Head Coach John van’t Schip had mixed emotions after City’s Westfield FFA Cup win over Floreat Athena on Tuesday night, admitting his side’s output did not live up to his expectations.
The challenging surface at Dorrien Gardens and the physicality and defensive structure of Floreat made it difficult for City.
However van’t Schip wasn’t making any excuses for his side’s inability to put the result beyond doubt during the 90 minutes.
“It was a hard game,” van’t Schip said.
“We didn’t want to play the game that we wanted but look, it’s good that we got to the next round.
“The pitch didn’t make it easy for the game we wanted to play but still, there were a lot of things that we have to improve what we were doing well in the last two games.
“Today, we didn’t get the ball out quick enough and of course they defended well. They kept five or six players in the line behind and to get through, you need to play quick and you need to move the ball quickly from one side to another and we didn’t do that too much and not quick enough.
“When they made it 1-1, they started to believe again and lucky for us, Anthony (Caceres) had a great shot so we were happy with the win but that’s it.”
After two pre-season friendlies that saw City come away with dominant performances in second gear, the nature of competition football proved to be the ideal wake up call van’t Schip’s men were after at this stage of the pre-season.
“We got the lead again and still could have created a third goal but they had some dangerous moments as well,” he said.
“Credit to Athena, they made it very hard for us and we are just happy we are into the next round.
“I think it’s good (to have a game like this) because we had two games before and we played a different style in those games so there was a little bit more at stake.
“You saw we forgot a few things that we were doing the last two games very well so we just have to pick it up again after a few days off, start our second part of the pre-season and get those things better and better.”
The group will return to Melbourne on Wednesday before taking a four day break after the completion of the side’s first block of pre-season training.
Stay tuned to melbournecityfc.com.au for more pre-season friendly announcements and the draw for the Round of 16 for the FFA Cup.