City Head Coach Michael Valkanis has made a statement of intent for Thursday’s clash against the Central Coast Mariners, saying his side will only have three points on their mind as they look to continue their pursuit of the top two.*/
There is no doubt the string of below par result since the Westfield FFA Cup Final has frustrated City - who recorded their first win since the cup triumph in the new year against Western Sydney - and the Head Coach is confident his side are out of the self-proclaimed ‘lull’, saying last week’s result against Adelaide could have gone their way if things had fallen into place.
City have the chance to start consolidating their position in the top four against the Mariners at AAMI Park, and with a full strength squad named for the contest, Valkanis is confident his side can bounce back in front of the home crowd.
“We’re in a good spot, wave won the cup, we’re third on the ladder and we are coming out of a period where we’ve been on a lull and we’re working on things that are a part of the building blocks,” Valkanis said.
“To get from A to B then to C and D, it takes time and I think that the team are on their way. They are playing something we all should be liking. Now it’s the finishing.
“[That’s] the thing that lacked and we have been working on it all week. It’s our final third movement in the box or the final run into the box because we are in there enough to score more goals.
“We are very confident with our style and the way we are played and we’ll just keep working to improve our final third.”
It was only New Years Eve the sides went head to head in an entertaining contest in Gosford and that match, as well as last week’s loss to the Reds reminded Valkanis that three points on Thursday night is not a given in the league.
“We can’t disrespect the opposition, there is no easy game in the A-League, we can’t disrespect any team and that is part of our values and ethos here as well,” Valkanis said.
“[The Mariners] will have their moments with controlled possession and try to hit us with fast wingers but I still think they will try to play the game Paul Okon has implement this year.
“Central Coast are a good team, they play a good brand of football, they’ve been unlucky with some results this year but we are an attacking minded team and we are going for the three points, there’s no doubt about it.”
Valkanis and City take on the Central Coast Mariners on Thursday night at AAMI Park, kick-off 7.50pm. Click here to get your tickets for the match or sign up to our 3 Match Membership below!