Ade­laide shows it’s ca­pa­ble – next up is con­sis­tency

Sunday Mail - - SPORT - JOHN KOSMINA

ADE­LAIDE’s best 45 min­utes of foot­ball for the sea­son!

So said coach Marco Kurz in his post-match in­ter­view after de­feat­ing Vic­tory mid­week. Why was it the best? Be­cause they scored – twice.

And should have had a cou­ple more. The game could have/should have been over by half­time. But it wasn’t, and the Reds bat­tled well in the second half to hang on to the two-goal lead that set them on their way.

It was a clas­sic Reds-Vic­tory en­counter and sit­ting in the stand watch­ing, the hair on the back of my neck was up … just like the old days. Coop­ers with a crowd is fan­tas­tic – there was a real buzz about the place and Vic­tory, with their trav­el­ling “ac­tive sup­port”, just added to the at­mos­phere – but back to the foot­ball.

There was plenty of talk the last cou­ple of weeks about strik­ers be­ing pur­sued to boost the Reds’ stocks. Bobo, Tommy Juric, Bruno Fornaroli, Andy Keogh – a $1 mil­lion war chest for Marco Kurz to get one.

Or was it just pa­per talk – click­bait. Gets a head­line, gets some chat­ter and is for­got­ten in 24 hours, if not sooner.

Get­ting one of these guys would be a quick fix. But what do you do with the guys that are there now if you bring an­other striker in? Craig Good­win, Nikola Mileusnic, Ryan Kitto, Ge­orge Black­wood, Ben Hal­lo­ran, Apos­to­los Sta­matelopou­los and Carlo Ar­miento.

They can do a job – we’ve seen that.

They are ca­pa­ble – they’re just not con­sis­tent, which is symp­to­matic of younger, lo­cal play­ers these days. Ken Ilso, who has a great pedi­gree, isn’t so young and he’s not lo­cal – he just needs to work more con­sis­tently.

But he is a class player with a great touch – and he’s smart. I en­joy watch­ing him play, al­beit with a lit­tle frus­tra­tion at times be­cause of his fluc­tu­at­ing in­ten­sity.

I also en­joy watch­ing United play with sim­i­lar frus­tra­tion, although not from a lack of in­ten­sity in this case.

It comes from the num­ber of good op­por­tu­ni­ties the Reds squan­der in the fi­nal ac­tion – a heavy touch or wrong­ly­weighted or timed pass – an in­cor­rect decision. Maybe that’s just foot­ball, par­tic­u­larly in Aus­tralia. United aren’t the only team guilty of this.

I saw Melbourne City nar­rowly defeat the Roar on Fri­day night and they have the same prob­lem, be­cause they have a num­ber of younger play­ers as well. As do a few other A-League clubs.

The kids need time – train­ing time, and more im­por­tantly, game time.

Now to the ele­phant in the room so to speak – the fu­ture of Marco Kurz at United.

It came out this week that there are “philo­soph­i­cal dif­fer­ences” be­tween Kurz and foot­ball di­rec­tor Aure­lio Vid­mar.

I got the feel­ing talk­ing to dif­fer­ent peo­ple weeks ago, that it was more than likely go­ing to come to this point.

There have been ru­mours around for a while that his train­ing regime is too hard and caus­ing soft tis­sue in­juries to the play­ers – a com­mon com­plaint when coaches and man­age­ment have dif­fer­ences of opin­ion or other agen­das are in play.

It may be true, it may not, but now it is in the me­dia it has a life of its own and it gen­er­ally means the end is nigh.

Mark Ru­dan has been linked to the job, but I tend to think it may go to some­one a lit­tle closer to home.

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