Newcastle Jets assistant coach Clayton Zane has challenged the squad’s young players to deliver more following Saturday night’s heavy 4-0 defeat to Melbourne City.
Standing in for suspended boss Mark Jones, Zane oversaw a disappointing setback at AAMI Park in what was a ‘must-win’ match for Newcastle’s top six hopes.
“I think it was a big wake-up call for some of the younger boys in the team,” Zane told Fox Sports.
“We came out of the blocks okay and had a great chance with Andrew Nabbout early in the piece.
“For the next 20-25 minutes we really struggled to get in the game. We got pinned back.
“It took us a while to settle and you can’t afford that at this time of year.
“With five games left a win was a must for us tonight.”
Newcastle were trailing by a single Tim Cahill goal at half-time when they removed starting striker Aleksandr Kokko in what Zane explained was a tactical switch.
“We didn’t get much penetration from the wingers and one thing Morten [Nordstrand] offers is he makes good little runs in between centre-halves and on the shoulders,” the former Caltex Socceroos forward said.
“For us he’s just a different style of player and we didn’t look like scoring through wingers or getting in behind too much.”