'Friday is all business': Delbridge preparing for tense Fornaroli tussle

Melbourne City defender Harrison Delbridge says he won’t be exchanging on-field pleasantries with his friend and former teammate Bruno Fornaroli when City host Perth Glory tonight.

City return to action this weekend after a bye in Round 8 and face a Glory outfit rooted to the bottom of the Hyundai A-League table.

It hasn’t been a dream start to life in Perth for Fornaroli, but Delbridge knows from the time he spent marking the Uruguayan in City training that he’ll be more than a handful for when the pair face off at AAMI Park.

Read how Delbridge plans to shut down Glory’s star-studded attack, Neil Kilkenny’s assessment of how Glory can turn their form around, Markus Babbel’s call for calm and more in our ‘wrap of the pressers’ ahead of Round 9.

‘Friday is all business’: how Delbridge plans to limit Fornaroli’s threat

Harrison Delbridge is preparing to give former teammate Bruno Fornaroli a baptism of fire when the two go head-to-head in at AAMI Park tonight (7:30pm AEDT).

Bruno Fornaroli
Fornaroli will face his former side for the first time tonight

The City defender has plenty of fond memories playing alongside the Uruguayan, but when he locks horns with Glory’s star striker he’ll be looking to use all of those memories to help him limit Fornaroli’s impact on the game.

“He’s obviously played a big role for the club and a lot of us are still mates with him,” Delbridge said in a Melbourne City club statement.

“But Friday is all business.

“I’ve played against him heaps in training as well so I know what to expect, but they have a range of dangerous players we need to be ready for.

“We're aware of (Glory’s) attacking threats and know the importance of shutting down their players.

“This team has the confidence to battle through results despite having our backs against the wall.

“We've shown that on a couple of occasions this season already.”

Melbourne City FC v Perth Glory
Friday, 6 December 2019
AAMI Park, Melbourne
Kick-Off: 7:30pm AEDT

MATCH PREVEW: Melbourne City v Perth Glory

Kilkenny reveals key to Glory form turnaround

Neil Kilkenny is confident an uplift in Glory’s disappointing form is just around the corner.

The Premiers sit bottom of the table and have often struggled to break down compact opposition offering little to no room in the front third for Glory’s star-studded attack to penetrate.

But Kilkenny says the key to bucking that trend is to score early, lure the opposition out of their shape and punish them on the counter attack.

“Like I keep saying, we dominate with possession and we dominate with the ball,” Kilkenny said.

“But maybe things aren’t breaking for us in the right areas.

“If we go up and score the first goal we’ll go on, and teams will have to open up and come at us a bit more, then there’s obviously a few more holes.

“We all know what’s expected of us, the expectation of the group and individuals of what the manager wants from us.

“We’re working really hard on the training ground.

“We just try our hardest and hopefully we can start picking up results

“We’ve got to concentrate on ourselves and keep on improving, and that’s what we’ll do.”

‘The good thing is now it’s December’: Babbel confident Wanderers form will change with the seasons

As we head into the summer months, Western Sydney boss Markus Babbel hopes his side are headed out of their horrid stretch of form.

The Wanderers have gained just one point from a possible 12 in their last four games but still miraculously sit in the top four.

Markus Babbel
After a fast start, Babbel and the Wanderers are on a poor run of form

Babbel is optimistic his side can build on what was a fantastic start to the campaign and put their horrible November form behind them with a win against Wellington Phoenix tomorrow afternoon.

“The whole of November was really bad for us,” Babbel said.

“The good thing is now it’s December, so now we have the chance to bring us in a better position.

“This is football, you can’t win every single game, you’re not always on the top.

“A season is like waves, sometimes it’s getting a bit better, a bit easier and sometimes there’s a period there, you have to fight to get out of this situation

I trust every single player and I hope the team can show a reaction now because we are not happy with the last games especially with the last month
“It’s all about us, no one else... (only we) can put the critics away.”

Wellington Phoenix v Western Sydney Wanderers FC
Saturday, 7 December 2019
Eden Park, Auckland
Kick-Off: 7:00pm Local, 5:00pm AEDT

MATCH PREVEW: Wellington Phoenix v Western Sydney Wanderers

‘It’s totally different’: Baumjohann dismisses FFA Cup loss to Brisbane

Brisbane Roar have already tasted victory over Sydney FC under Robbie Fowler after eliminating them from the FFA Cup in pre-season, but Sky Blues midfielder Alex Baumjohann says his side will be a completely different prospect for the Roar this weekend.

“I think it’s totally different, at this stage when we played them in the FFA Cup was before the season started,” Baumjohann said.

FFA Cup Highlights: Sydney FC vs Brisbane Roar

“Everything was new, and I think maybe nine out of ten games we would have won this game, but they scored straight before half time and straight after.

“We have to do what we did the last weeks and I think we have a big chance to win this game.

“I think the atmosphere at our home games is amazing, and hopefully lots of fans will show up for the next games.

“I think we need all the supporters behind us and they can hopefully be our 12th man.”

Sydney FC v Brisbane Roar FC
Saturday, 7 December 2019
Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Kogarah
Kick-Off: 7:30pm AEDT

MATCH PREVEW: Sydney FC v Brisbane Roar
HOW TO WATCH: Catch all the action from Round 9

‘We didn’t play to our level’: Izzo confident Reds can bounce back from minor setback

They’re impressed for most of the 2019/20 Hyundai A-League campaign, but a shock home loss to Wellington Phoenix last weekend gave Adelaide United a wake up call.

And Reds goalkeeper Paul Izzo says that’s exactly what they needed.

“We’re all extremely disappointed with how things went last weekend,” Izzo said.

“We’re aware of how good our recent run was, but I think at the same it was a good little wake-up call to say the season is still a very long way to go.

“So we start again and look to get the three points this weekend.”

Adelaide now face the prospect of another game at Coopers Stadium against Newcastle Jets who are high on confidence after beating the Wanderers last weekend, but Izzo sees the clash as the perfect game to kick his side back into gear.  

“I think it would be a great way to bounce back,” Izzo said.

“For us to get better we’ve to be honest with ourselves and we were very honest with ourselves this weekend, knowing that we didn’t play to our level.”

Adelaide United v Newcastle Jets
Sunday, 8 December 2019
Coopers Stadium, Adelaide
Kick-Off: 5:30pm local, 6:00pm AEDT

MATCH PREVIEW: Adelaide United v Newcastle Jets