Coolen: Van Dijk drove Reds' win

Coach Rini Coolen was impressed with Sergio van Dijk's effort and hunger to win against Melbourne Victory on Friday night.

Coach Rini Coolen was impressed with Sergio van Dijk's effort and hunger to win against Melbourne Victory on Friday night.

The Reds secured a vital 1-0 win at Hindmarsh Stadium against their rivals thanks to Dutch striker's 52nd minute-goal.

It wasn't all easy going for United though as they were made to work for their win by a resilient Victory.

The visitors dominated proceedings in the first-half and looked the more likely of the two sides to score first.

However Adelaide came out a different side in the second and were rewarded shortly after the interval for their intense pressure with van Dijk's goal.

Coolen said his players were hungry to win and was pleased with the effort and performance they produced.

"I think the boys showed a few very important things today ... the effort, which is what you need to win a game like that, and the way we tried to play ... they were hungry to win," Coolen said.

"Not everything was perfect ... you can't ask for a very high level of playing in the first weeks of the competition."

"We still have a lot of things to improve, but the way we played today and the effort ... it was there from the players."

"We can mention a lot of players who did well, but I think the team (performance as a whole) was the winner today."

Following the disappointing display in the 1-0 loss to Perth last week, Coolen knew that his side could not afford to drop another three points.

"It's very important in the first few weeks of the competition to collect some points and build confidence, which you only get if you win games," Coolen said.

"After a game like last week, we spent a lot time fixing a few problems, and all knew what we had to do (this week)."

"It's fantastic if you can play such a game like last week, and then do something like we did tonight ... we have to be happy with that."

The Dutch coach said it was even more important that the Reds recorded their first win of the season at home against their derby opponents.

"Everybody knows it's a very important game against Melbourne victory, it's a special game and only one result is important - to win," Coolen said.

"We've now beaten them a few times in a row, which is fantastic ... it's good for our supporters and we know we are going to make them very happy with that."

"But for us it's more important that at this stage of the competition we collect some points ... and want to work hard to create and make things better."

After a dismal start, Adelaide had a number of key performers in the second-half, with Dario Vidosic and captain Jon McKain being the standouts.

McKain in particular was solid at the back and played a vital role in shackling the impact of Victory star Harry Kewell.

The 29-year-old was rewarded for his performance, winning the second-ever Kosmina/Muscat Medal for being judged the best player of the game.

McKain said himself and the players took upon themselves to make sure their performance and most importantly their attitude was better than last week.

"Obviously the first half last week and the end of the game (against Perth) was terrible, we are not hiding away from that," McKain said.

"We knew this week was a short turnaround and we spoke about it ... and at the end of the day it came down to our attitudes."

"I thought we went on the field with a good attitude today and we were determined to win... and I think it was a very good performance by us."

"It's easy to say we want to win, but to actually go out on the field and every player show that they are here and ready to play (is not easy to do) ... and I think Melbourne felt that today."

"Obviously we can work on a lot but we are going to enjoy the win tonight and tomorrow look back on it, although Monday we will start looking to Sydney (next Saturday)."

"It's three points, we are not getting too excited, but we are very happy with it."