Players are relishing prospect of packed schedule – Popa


Tony Popovic is adamant that his Glory squad are relishing the prospect of a busy fixture schedule when the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season resumes next month.


With six regular-season games to complete, the men in purple are likely to be in action every three or four days in what is shaping up to be a thrilling sprint towards the finals.

And speaking ahead of Thursday’s return to full training, the Head Coach asserted that the games coming thick and fast will be welcome news for his players.

“This is what they’ve [the players] always dreamed of,” he said.

“They always tell us that they’d love to play three games a week and experience that European culture of playing 40 to 50 games a year and they’ll experience it now in a short period.

“I think if you asked all the players, they’d be excited by that.

“Playing games one after the other is something that all footballers enjoy.

“We’ll do whatever we can as a football club to best prepared on and off the park to give ourselves a chance of competing with the best and winning games.

“We have six games remaining, so along with three other clubs, we have the most games to play.

“The whole squad will be important, but the squad’s always been important for us and it’ll probably come to the fore in this period.

“We certainly won’t be match-fit going into Round One, but neither will our opponent, so we’ll just be the best prepared we can be and go out there with the mindset of winning a game of football.”

Popovic went on to express his delight at seeing the squad assemble at Glory HQ to begin their preparations for the season resumption in earnest.

“Three months is a long time not to see the players and have a training session,” he said, “but we all understand that COVID was something which affected the world and we have to be grateful that we’ve come out the other side where we can start moving forward.

“We’re all happy and relived that we’re now at this point where we can back to what we love doing.

“Being back here today is a happy feeling for everyone.

“We’ll enjoy working hard together and look forward to an exciting month ahead in Sydney.”

The Head Coach confirmed that James Meredith will return to training shortly after completing his quarantine and that fellow-defender Osama Malik has recovered from injury.