Match Preview – Popa lauds squad strength ahead of Sydney FC test


Tony Popovic has highlighted the strength in depth of his Glory squad ahead of Thursday’s clash with Sydney FC at Netsrata Jubilee Stadium.


With the Premiers’ Plate having been secured last weekend, the Head Coach has the option to juggle his personnel for the Round 26 fixture should he choose to do so.

And he insisted that he would have no qualms whatsoever in turning to players who have not featured on a regular basis in recent weeks.

“We are on top because of the strength of the squad and that makes us proud as a club, having a strong squad of players that can step in,” he said.

“We had Jake Brimmer, a young talent, come on very early for Juande in a very important game for our football club on Sunday and the boy was outstanding.

“Now, if he wasn’t training as well as he can and not at the level required, he couldn’t do that.

“There are many like Jake here at the club that are waiting for their opportunity and we just want to have them prepared and ready so that if the chance comes, they can showcase their talent.

“We are playing a big club [on Thursday], a big opponent and we want to put in a good performance.

“We are just concentrating on that.

“Some players that haven’t had a lot of minutes will possibly get a chance to travel.

“Everyone wants to be a part of it and the whole squad has participated so far, some with more minutes than others, obviously.

“But they’ve all contributed to our success and I’m sure they will continue to do so moving forward.”

Jason Davidson (knee) and Juande (groin) are among those not expected to make the trip east, but Chris Ikonomidis could be in contention to return after recovering well from his shoulder injury.

Sydney FC, meanwhile, will head into the game eight points behind Glory in second spot and requiring a win to keep third-placed Melbourne Victory at arm’s length.

The Sky Blues have won eight of their 12 home games thus far this term and lost just one of their last seven games.

Match Details

Thursday, 18 April 2019

Sydney FC v Perth Glory

Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Kogarah

Kick-Off: 5:50PM (WST) (7:50PM (Local))

Referee: Chris Beath

Assistant Referee 1: Andrew Lindsay

Assistant Referee 2: Andrej Giev

Fourth Official: Kurt Ams

VAR: Kris Griffiths-Jones

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 5.30pm (WST), Sky Sport 4 (New Zealand) and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers

Radio Broadcast: myfootballnation.com (SEN+). ABC News on Radio, Grandstand Digital, Online & via the ABC Listen App – A-League Live.

Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash tag #SYDvPER

To purchase tickets visit www.a-league.com.au/tickets

Sydney FC squad: 1.Andrew REDMAYNE (gk), 2.Aaron CALVER, 4.Alex WILKINSON, 5.Jop van der LINDEN, 6.Josh BRILLANTE, 8.Paulo RETRE, 9.Adam LE FONDRE, 10.Milos NINKOVIC, 11.Danny DE SILVA, 13.Brandon O’NEILL, 14.Alex BROSQUE, 16.Reza GHOOCHANNEJHAD, 17.Anthony CACERES, 18. Jacob TRATT, 20.Alex CISAK (gk), 21. Mitch AUSTIN, 22.Siem DE JONG, 23.Rhyan GRANT

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 5.Jop van der LINDEN (promoted), 21. Mitch AUSTIN (promoted)

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 3.Ben WARLAND (ACL – indefinite), 7. Michael ZULLO (hamstring – 1 week), 12. Trent BUHAGIAR (ACL – indefinite), 19. Chris ZUVELA (ACL – indefinite)

Perth Glory squad: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 2. Alex GRANT, 4.Shane LOWRY, 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 7.Joel CHIANESE, 11.Brendon SANTALAB, 13.Matthew SPIRANOVIC, 14.Chris HAROLD, 15.Brandon WILSON, 16.Tomislav MRCELA, 17.Diego CASTRO, 20.Jake BRIMMER, 21.Jacob ITALIANO, 22.Fabio FERREIRA, 23.Scott NEVILLE, 29.Kristian POPOVIC, 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 88.Neil KILKENNY

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 2.Alex GRANT (promoted), 14.Chris HAROLD (promoted), 15.Brandon WILSON (promoted), 16.Tomislav MRCELA (promoted), 21.Jacob ITALIANO (promoted), 29.Kristian POPOVIC (promoted)

Outs: 3.Jason DAVIDSON (knee injury – 1 week), 6.Dino DJULBIC (omitted), 9.Andy KEOGH (omitted), 27.JUANDE (groin injury – 1 week)

Unavailable: 19.Chris IKONOMIDIS (shoulder injury – 1 week)