Sydney FC coach Frank Farina lamented he could have donned an Adelaide United strip and made an impact, such was the extent of his own team's inadequacy.
Sydney FC coach Frank Farina lamented he could have donned an Adelaide United strip and made an impact, such was the extent of his own team's inadequacy at Hindmarsh Stadium on Monday.
The former Qantas Socceroo player and coach made the boast with tongue firmly in cheek after watching Sydney's comprehensive 3-0 defeat.
The visitors were fortunate not to have lost by an even greater margin, with four Adelaide attempts hitting the woodwork.
"I think I could have played out there with a red shirt on," 48-year-old Farina said.
"We fell into that hole initially and then they got the penalty.
"It was a battle from then on.
"The third one (goal) was just a bad mistake from us and it became virtually a training run for them."
Facing a Reds' team in their own backyard - one which was desperate to arrest a two-game slide - was never going to be an easy task for Farina's youthful team, comprising of almost half a dozen teenagers and missing several senior players.
Italian veteran Alessandro Del Piero headlined the list of sidelined Sky Blues, including Jason Culina, Paul Reid, Ivan Necevski, Fabio, Pascal Bosschaart and Krunoslav Lovrek.
"To be brutally honest, we were outplayed," Farina said.
"We were out-experienced.
"We only had Brett (Emerton) and (captain) Terry (McFlynn) on the park who you would call experienced players.
"When the 16-year-olds start to be your better players, it shows we're lacking players at the moment and lacking experience.
"As we know in football, when a team gets a goal, their intensity and adrenalin rises and yours goes a bit flat.
"When you've got a lot of young players, it's hard for them to rally and get going.
"It's giving young players an opportunity but at the same time a lesson in the brutality of football and how it can be, because we could have lost by seven or eight."
Adding injury to insult, one of Sydney's few experienced hands on Monday, midfielder Adam Griffiths, suffered a recurrence of a knee injury in the opening 10 minutes before hobbling to the bench for treatment in the 12th minute.
And he is likely to sit out at least the first part of 2013 as a consequence.
"Against Central Coast (on Thursday) he had a medial ligament strain," Farina said.
"But he trained Sunday and said he was okay.
"It was strapped but 10 minutes in, it wasn't happening.
"It's something that will linger on for the next 2-3 weeks
"If he couldn't play there he'll definitely be out for Perth (this Saturday), I would imagine."