Match Preview: “We’re in a good place to move forward” – Garcia

Glory v Phoenix 2021 - Richard Garcia on the bench

Richard Garcia believes that his squad is continuing to grow and develop ahead of Sunday’s A-League clash with in-form Brisbane Roar at Moreton Daily Stadium (kick-off at 12.05pm).


Glory will head to the Sunshine State looking to bounce back from last weekend’s defeat at the hands of Wellington by completing a double over Warren Moon’s men who were beaten at HBF Park in February.

And while acknowledging that the Phoenix scoreline was disappointing, Garcia feels that there was plenty of evidence within his side’s display to indicate that progress is being made.

“The result wasn’t what we wanted,” he said, “but the performance for the majority of the game was where it needs to be.

“Part of rebuilding is trying to implement the things we want to implement and making people aware of where we’re going as a group and as a club.

“I feel that when we have time to actually put things in place, the guys really take it on board and put it into practice.

“It’s always going to be a difficult year when you’re in the middle of a rebuild and I feel that the boys have really stood up.

“I don’t think the table really reflects the majority of the performances that we’ve put in this year.

“It’s been a hectic time and with new players coming in, it takes them a little bit longer because you’re going from game to game to game rather than getting the training in in-between.

“That’s part of what we’re trying to improve and that’s going to take a little bit of time.

“There are also the younger guys who have  taken a step up to a level that they’ve never played at all.

“When you take these things into consideration, these guys will be stronger and better for that next year and the year after that.

“When you look at that, we’re in a good place to then move forward.”

Garcia went on to reveal that retaining defensive focus when on the attack has formed a key part of training this week.

“We spoke to the boys about where we sit within the league and where we sit within our play,” he said.

“We went in-depth about the fact that we’re keeping a lot of possession and dominating teams, but not quite taking advantage of that good possession and dominating form.

“And on the other hand, the lack of concentration in those moments when we go forward.

“So it’s just about re-jigging a few things and making sure that players understand their roles and responsibilities a bit clearer.

“During those long, dominant spells of possession, players switch off and at the moment, we’re doing that quite often.

“So we need to make sure that the guys are just as focused about our defence when we’re going forward as they are when we’re under attack.”

In terms of early team news, meanwhile, the Head Coach confirmed that Sebastian Langkamp will return to the selection mix and Diego Castro is a chance to start against an in-form Roar side looking to chalk up a third successive victory.

“Sebastian’s looking fit again, which is great and he’ll be involved in the squad,” he said.

“Cas [Diego Castro] has had another week under his belt, so that’s good.

“They [Brisbane] are going to be confident coming off a run of good form and we know their strengths and we’ve got to deal with those strengths and look for the weaknesses that we need to exploit.”

Sunday will mark the second time in as many seasons that Glory have visited Moreton Daily Stadium, with last year’s meeting ending in a 1-1 draw.

The men in purple will be out to extend a six-game unbeaten run against the Queenslanders which has yielded four wins and two draws.