Gombau’s ruthless plea after another fall away
WANDERERS boss Josep Gombau has called on his players to find the ruthlessness to “kill the game”, after his side gave up another lead to draw 1-1 with Wellington.
Western Sydney remains in sixth spot, after failing to build on a first-half lead for the second week in a row. Gombau’s side missed chances to extend its advantage before the break but was penned back in the second half and in the end were glad to escape with a draw.
The Wanderers host fourth-placed Melbourne Victory on Friday night, with Gombau certain to re-emphasise to his players the need to capitalise on periods of domination.
Brendon Santalab had given his side the lead in the first half in Wellington, only for Matijia Ljujic to strike an equaliser with 15 minutes to go.
It means Western Sydney haven’t scored a second-half goal in almost a month, but Gombau denied it was due to his players’ fitness.
“I don’t think so,” he said. “It’s true we’re not scoring goals at the end of the game, but I don’t think it’s because of a physical reason. Sometimes in football it’s just like this.
“The good thing is we are scoring, and we have the chances to score more. The last two games I think we’ve had the chances to win both games but we haven’t taken them, and that’s something we need to improve on.
“If we want to be in a good way in the league and in the season, we need to take those chances and kill the games in the moment.
“(Against Wellington) we had the chance to go into halftime winning by more than one goal.
“But the second half changed; Wellington took more opportunities, they had more of the ball and more chances to score. In the end it was a result that was fair.”
The Wanderers boss hopes to welcome back Josh
Risdon, Jaushua Sotirio and Alvaro Cejudo from injury against Victory, as well as the return from suspension of Robbie Cornthwaite and
Despite the result against Wellington, Gombau insisted he saw more evidence that the players were adapting to his methods, after heavy defeats in the run up to Christmas had cast an early cloud over his tenure.
“It’s the mentality of the players,” he said. “The very beginning when I came it was difficult, whenever you have a big change like this it is a difficult situation for the players. But they changed their mentality, they are open and I am so happy with them. They are putting 120% in for every single game and I am very happy with this.”