Malik: We are stronger as a group

He’s been one of the in-form men under Warren Joyce so far this season and midfielder Osama Malik says one of the hardest pre-season’s he’s had to undertake in the A-League has made his side stronger as a group.

Malik – who has played in his more natural role as a defensive midfielder – believes their perfect start hasn’t been a fluke, crediting the changes to the side’s style and the bond in the squad as the main reasons for their performances.

“I think that the fans and the players have to be happy with the changes,” Malik said.

“We said last week we probably didn’t play the best but in years past, we probably would have fallen and lost that game.

“The fact that we are stronger as a group, it goes a lot to the coach and playing group who have been working hard.”

With his side’s biggest test coming up against Adelaide United on Saturday night, the midfielder says he’s looking forward to the challenge from not only the opposition, but the intense competition for places in the squad.

“[Coopers Stadium} is a great place to go. Now we’ve got a bigger Adelaide connection, I think we’re going to be fighting for tickets before the game.,” he said.

“It’s going to be a great game and as we've said, they’ve had a good start and they’ll be confident so we have to be on our game.

“I like to play and to start but as the coach said, there is 22 guys in the squad who are all worthy of starting and they all want to play as well.

“I’m under no illusions, I need to keep performing to keep my spot because there are plenty of guys who can come and do the job if I don’t.”

City face the Reds this Saturday night at Coopers Stadium, kick-off 7.50pm. See the match on FOX Sports 501 or free-to-air on Ten’s ONE HD.

City then return home on Friday night to take on Champions Sydney FC at AAMI Park in a massive double header with our W-League side.

Opta Widget: OPTA MALIK