ALM Match Preview: Staj and co seeking more Glory in Sydney’s west

Glory Head Coach Alen Stajcic believes that his squad has what it takes to build upon last week’s morale-boosting away win over Western Sydney Wanderers when they visit Macarthur FC on Sunday (kick-off at 2:00pm WST).

View his full pre-match media conference HERE.

The visitors showed enormous character to ignore a difficult week off the field to go toe-to-toe with high-flying Wanderers and chalk up a first victory on the road this season.

And Stajcic feels that his charges are more than capable of enjoying more success in Sydney’s west at the expense of a Bulls side currently sitting fifth in the table.

“Everyone who played last week is available this week,” he said.

“It was a good performance last week and I thought we deserved the win, so it’s great that we can carry that momentum forward with those players that played last week.

“At the end of the day, there are lots of players in our squad who are all fighting for positions and we might have had reduced numbers in the last couple of weeks, but there are still plenty of boys there fighting for spots and it’s their lives and their careers on the line, so it’s an opportunity for other people to step up.

“I think the positive from this year, has been that even in the last four or five weeks, regardless of who’s come into the squad when we’ve had red card suspensions, injuries and what have you, we’ve kept that same level.

“We haven’t really dropped at all regardless of the difficulties we’ve been given and that’s going back four or five weeks before we even lost some players.

“So that’s really been a pleasing part, showing that we’re unified at training and everyone’s all aligned [so that] when they do have to fill a roll, they can come in and do it.

“These are still desperate times and we need to win a lot of matches to start threatening the Finals race.

“So we’re certainly not resting on our laurels and thinking that’s enough.

“Of course we want to go there and compete and win again.”

Glory downed the Bulls at HBF Park a month ago, overturning a 2-0 half-time deficit to do so, but the Head Coach believes that Mile Sterjovski’s side will be better prepared this time around.

“Macarthur have come off their first win in a long time last weekend,” he said, “so they’re finding form again and [Ulises] Davila looks like in the last two weeks that he’s hit his old levels of being exceptional, so they’re definitely a good team.

“I think they were a little bit disadvantaged that day [the defeat to Glory at HBF Park], to be honest.

“They were coming off a long run of games and some long-haul trips as well in the AFC Cup and I think we caught them at a good time.
I sensed a little bit of fatigue in them halfway through the first half and they won’t have that this time.

“They’re playing at home, they’ll be fresh having not played for eight or nine days, so I think they’ll be a different proposition.”

But while aware of Macarthur’s strengths, Stajcic remains adamant that there is actually little to separate all 12 teams in the A-League this year.

“What I have been saying for a long time is that the competitions is so close,” he said.

“I actually truly believe Western United are a good team in this competition and have competed well every week and been unlucky on numerous occasions and they’re rooted to the bottom of the ladder.

“Some teams at the top have scored less goals than us, for example, so it’s really on the day.

“The teams that are on the top have been more consistent throughout each game and throughout the comp, but it’s not a gap, there’s not a big gap week to week, game to game, between any team.

“This competition is so tight and I think anything can happen right down to the wire.”

Glory will travel east seeking a first ever way win over Macarthur having lost on each of their three previous visits to Campbelltown Stadium.

The men in white have been beaten just once at home this term, going down 3-0 to Wellington in Round 8 while also recording four draws and two wins (over Western United and Adelaide United).

French import Valere Germain has made a strong start to his maiden A-League season, scoring six goals, while the talismanic Davila has also found the net on six occasions and provided three assists and
Filip Kurto has made the most saves in the league with 64.

Match Details

Isuzu UTE A-League 2023/24 Season Round 14

Macarthur FC v Perth Glory

Campbelltown Stadium

Sunday 28 January 2024

Kick-off: 2:00pm WST

Referee: Daniel Elder

Macarthur FC squad: 1. Danijel NIZIC, 4. Matthew JURMAN, 6. Tomi USKOK, 8. Jake HOLLMAN, 10. Ulises DAVILA, 12. Filip KURTO, 13. Ivan VUJICA, 14. Kristian POPOVIC, 15Kearyn BACCUS , 16. Oliver Jones, 17. RAPHAEL, , 20. Kealey Adamson, 21. Bernardo Oliveira, 22. Yianni NICOLAOU, 23. Clayton LEWIS , 27. Jerry SKOTADIS, 31. Lachlan ROSE, 36. Ali AUGLAH, 37. Jed DREW, 98. Valere GERMAIN

Ins: Nil

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 2. Jake McGING, 7. Danny DE SILVA, 19. Jesper WEBBER, 24. Charles M’MOMBWA (INTERNATIONAL Commitment), 44. Matt MILLAR, 32. Isaac HOVAR (injury)

Perth Glory squad: 1.Oli SAIL (gk), 2.Johnny KOUTROUMBIS, 3.Jacob MUIR, 4.Luke BODNAR, 7.Stefan COLAKOVSKI, 8.Mustafa AMINI, 9.David WILLIAMS, 12.Luke IVANOVIC, 13.Cameron COOK (gk), 14.Riley WARLAND, 15.Aleksandar SUSNJAR, 17.Jarrod CARLUCCIO, 19.Trent OSTLER, 20.Giordano COLLI, 22.Adam TAGGART (co-c), 23.Daniel BENNIE, 27.Jayden GORMAN, 34.Andriano LEBIB. 29.Darryl LACHMAN, 77.Bruce KAMAU

Two to be omitted

Ins: 17.Jarrod CARLUCCIO, 28.Kaelan MAJEKODUNMI, 34.Andriano LEBIB

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 5.Mark BEEVERS (co-c) (injured), 21.Antonis MARTIS (injured)