For Coach John Kosmina, the Reds’ win over Nagoya rekindled similar emotions to the club’s most memorable night of all.
For Coach John Kosmina, the Reds- win over Nagoya rekindled similar emotions and excitement to that of arguably the club-s most memorable night of all.
Having had a night and the morning to let it sink in, Kosmina stated the victory over Nagoya Grampus, which saw Adelaide United progress through to the AFC Champions League Quarter Finals, brought back memories of the Reds- first match of its inception in 2003.
The sizes of the crowd may have differed and the two occasions may have been held under differing circumstances and for different reasons, but for a usually measured Kosmina, watching what unfolded against Nagoya was not dissimilar to when he was in charge of the team for club-s first ever match.
Both results finished 1-0 in United-s favour and Kosmina could see a similarity between the players that ran out in the Round of 16 clash to the ones that took the field against the Brisbane Strikers back in 2003 in the passion they displayed for the shirt and the club.
“It-s really satisfying to say that we-re in the final eight in Asia. I don-t look at it from a personal point of view, for me it-s all about the game and doing things the right way and there-s almost a spiritual way I think about coaching, and to see the way the blokes fought for each other last night for me was special,” Kosmina said.
“Walking off the field last night reminded me of October 17, 2003 and Adelaide United-s first game here.”
“That was a special part about the whole evening for me on a personal level, but to see the players become as close as they have and to see guys putting in performances on an individual basis, last night there were 14 blokes that put individual efforts in.”
While the crowd figure against Nagoya may have been significantly smaller compared to the club-s first ever match, Kosmina could also draw parallels on how united and vocal the fans were, and the difference they made to help the Reds get over the line.
Understandably, crowd numbers at the Reds- home games during the latest Hyundai A-League season were down on previous years, but Kosmina is confident the players have gone some way to regaining respect for the United faithful for their efforts in the ACL.
“There is a warmth between the fans and the players that didn-t exist at Christmas time,” Kosmina said.
“Fans are easily disgruntled these days. You-ve got your fair share of fair weathered supporters and you-ve got your die-hards who will turn up week in week out, they-ll always support you, but they-re entitled to whinge.”
“The Red Army and the Red Terrace turn up week in week out and they pay their money and spend that kind of dough and they-re entitled to whinge if we don-t perform, so I-ve got no issue with that - that-s what supporters are there for.”