Match Preview – Garcia looking to go back to the future ahead of Sydney FC clash

Richard Garcia in t-shirt

Richard Garcia believes his side need to revert to the mental approach they took during the early rounds of the season in order to get back to winning ways at the expense of Sydney FC on Wednesday.


Glory will face the reigning A-League Champions and Premiers at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium (kick-off at 5.05pm WST) looking to bounce back from a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Macarthur FC last time out.

And the Head Coach feels that a psychological rewind could enable them to do just that.

“This part of the season has been really challenging with the amount of time we’ve spent away from home and the amount of time we’ve spent in quarantine,” he said.

“But we knew those challenges were coming, so it’s about us getting our heads back to where they were at the start of the season and kicking on from here.

“You can tell that some of the guys are mentally fatiguing, so it’s about trying to refresh their mindsets as well as their bodies.

“The league [table] is a little bit deceiving with the games played, so you can end up being further down than you normally are and it can be a mental challenge at times.

“But we’re in and around the teams that have played the same amount of games as us, so if we continue along this path and continue to pick up points on the road, we’ve then got those five games at home in 16 days, which is a tall order, but at least we’re at home.”

Garcia went on to confirm that although Glory will face the Sky Blues without the services of Diego Castro who is set  to be sidelined for between two and four weeks by a knee injury, he is confident that the skipper’s absence can be compensated for.

“He picked up a knock towards the back end of the game and his knee swelled up a bit,” he said.

“So he flew back to Perth to get it checked out and now it’s just about getting that swelling down and getting him back out there.

“It’s a matter of waiting for the knee to settle down.

“We were without him at the start of the season and did very well.

“He’s an important part of the team and an important part of the squad, but so is everyone and the guys that come in and play need to add their talent to the game.

“We have plenty of options to be able to pick from – we have Carlo [Armiento] and Dane [Ingham] and Brammers [Ciaran Bramwell] and also Andy [Keogh] that can come in.

“We never change the way we play; the structure and the set-up is always the same.

“He [Diego] adds that little element of surprise, but it just means that we go back to our structure and how we started the season.

“We’re not about one person; we’re about the whole squad.”

Wednesday will mark the second time Glory have faced Sydney FC in the space of just 14 days and Garcia is quietly confident that his charges can build upon the performance which yielded a 1-1 draw at HBF Park.

“That first home game, we came in and made a bit of a nervy start because we’d conceded a few goals [in previous games] and I thought we dealt with that pretty well.

“It’s about us playing like we did in the second half and trying to get things right from the start rather than halfway through.”

In addition to Castro, Glory will also be without the services of Daniel Stynes (groin), Nick Sullivan (calf) and Nick D’Agostino (hamstring), but club record A-League goalscorer Andy Keogh returns to the selection mix having missed the Macarthur FC game due to Achilles soreness.

Keogh scored one of the goals in Glory’s most recent away victory over Sydney FC which came in February 2016.

Match Details

Wednesday, 7 April 2021

Sydney FC v Perth Glory

Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Kogarah

Kick-Off: 5:05pm (WST)(7:05pm (Local))

Referee: Adam Kersey

Assistant Referee 1: Lance Greenshields

Assistant Referee 2: Matthew McOrist

Fourth Official: Tim Danaskos

VAR: Kris Griffiths-Jones

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 506 from 5:00pm (WST), Sky Sport 7 (New Zealand), Kayo Sports (www.kayosports.com.au) and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers

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), 3.Ben WARLAND, 4.Alex WILKINSON (c), 5.Alex BAUMJOHANN, 6.Ryan McGOWAN, 8.Paulo RETRE, 9.BOBÔ, 10.Milos NINKOVIC, 11.Kosta BARBAROUSES, 16.Joel KING, 17.Anthony CACERES, 18.Luke IVANOVIC, 20.Tom HEWARD-BELLE (gk), 21.Harry VAN der SAAG, 23.Rhyan GRANT, 25.Callum TALBOT, 26.Luke BRATTAN, 27.Jordi SWIBEL, 28.Calem NIEUWENHOF, 33.Pat WOOD.

**2-4 to be omitted**

Ins:  25.Callum TALBOT (promoted), 27.Jordi SWIBEL (promoted)

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 7.Michael ZULLO (calf), 12.Trent BUHAGIAR (knee), 19.Chris ZUVELA (knee)

Perth Glory squad: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 2.Jason GERIA, 4.Sebastian LANGKAMP, 5.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, 6.Osama MALIK, 8.Kosuke OTA, 9.Bruno FORNAROLI, 10.Andy KEOGH, 13.Luke BODNAR, 15.Brandon WILSON, 19.Callum TIMMINS, 20.Carlo ARMIENTO, 22.Josh RAWLINS, 23.Dane INGHAM, 29.Darryl LACHMAN, 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 38.Ciaran BRAMWELL, 88.Neil KILKENNY

**0-2 to be omitted**

Ins: 5.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS (returns from suspension), 10.Andy KEOGH (returns from injury)

Outs: 17.Diego CASTRO (injury – 2-4 weeks), 24.Daniel STYNES (injury – 3 weeks)

Unavailable: 7.Chris IKONOMIDIS (knee – 1-2 weeks), 16.Nick SULLIVAN (calf – 1 week), 18.Nick D’AGOSTINO (hamstring – 1 week)