Adelaide United's fast start to 2014-15 has come as no surprise to coach Josep Gombau, who says it's the inevitable result of his players' hard work and willingness to learn.The Reds endured a difficult beginning to life under their Spanish boss last term, before blasting their way into a top-six finish after clicking part-way through the campaign.
On Friday they go into a home match against reigning champions Brisbane Roar FC as heavy favourites, prompting one reporter to ask why Adelaide have been so much more consistent in the early month of this season.
"In the beginning we are starting a project, we need to learn, we make mistakes," Gombau said.
"When a kid goes to school, the first day he don't read, the teacher explains to him how he needs to read the book and (then) he can read. We are the same.
"The reason is this: (We needed) time for it to work, time for the players to learn, be patient. Make mistakes, from these mistakes we learn. Now we are better. It's a process."
Asked if the project to transform the Reds from inconsistent would-be contenders to a genuine title threat was ahead of schedule, Gombau said: "I think we go faster (than expected)."
"But the players are very good, they want to work, they want to learn, they concentrate.
"Here what I've found in Australia is the people are so good in this sport. They want to learn, they want to work."
Perth Glory are in town next Tuesday night for the inaugural Westfield FFA Cup final at Coopers Stadium, and the Reds could be forgiven for having one eye on that eagerly anticipated decider. Reds' psychological edge for Cup final: Kossie
But Gombau insisted Friday's Hyundai A-League game has been the club's sole focus.
"For us, every single game is important, every single competition is important," he said.
"We have five days between the matches. We think this is time enough to prepare for the game. After Saturday we will prepare for the final. "Until then, we are not speaking about the final."