Sydney FC boss Steve Corica singled out midfield playmaker Milos Ninkovic for special praise after his star turn in Saturday night’s Sydney Derby.
Ninkovic was at the heart of Sydney FC’s impressive performance and set up Alex Brosque’s second-half goal in the 2-0 win at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
The Serbian won the Johnny Warren Medal in 2016/17 as Sydney FC stormed to the Hyundai A-League double and Corica said his midfield maestro was back to his best.
“He’s a quality player,” Corica said with a smile.
“‘Ninko’ is, I think, the best in the league - one of the best in the league.
"He’s a fantastic player, he’s great for the club, he’s enjoying his football.
“He was good for us, very good for us when he won the Player of the Year two years ago.
“Last year he was still good but we had other people performing really well as well last year.
“But ‘Ninko’ is a very, very good player. Quality.”
Corica was delighted with the performance from his Sky Blues, who took a fourth-minute lead through English import Adam Le Fondre.
“The performance was very good,” he added.
“It’s a derby, we won 2-0, [got a] clean sheet, defended really well in the second half … they put us under a lot of pressure.
“But I think the first half, we dominated and we played really well.”
Western Sydney Wanderers manager Markus Babbel was happy with the progression his side has shown since taking the top job.
And while he acknowledged refining his side’s skill in the final third would take time, he insisted the Wanderers were going “in the right way”.
“It’s a process … at the moment we have not so many players on the pitch who they know, if they get a chance, they can score a goal,” he said.
“We have not so many players [like that] and we have to work with them to [be] more confident.
“At the moment, we have a problem with this and we have to keep going.
“For me, if I see where we started to now, big improve. We have to keep going. If the boys … make this mentality every week, then we go in definitely in the right way.”