Health concerns force three out for Adelaide

Adelaide United coach Aurelio Vidmar has some concerns heading into the FIFA Club World Cup play-off game against Waitakere United on Thursday night, with Cassio, Saso Ognenovski and Diego all ruled out of the match.

Adelaide United coach Aurelio Vidmar has some concerns heading into the FIFA Club World Cup play-off game against Waitakere United on Thursday night, with Cassio, Saso Ognenovski and Diego all ruled out of the match.

Vidmar confirmed at the official pre-game press conference that Cassio and Ognenovski have not recovered from the virus they picked up on the flight to Japan, while Diego has failed to recover from an injury picked up in last Friday nights 6-1 thrashing of Wellington Phoenix.

Goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic and defender Scott Jamieson however will play despite also being forced to travel and train away from the rest of the group for the past couple of days.

The loss of the trio is a major blow, as all have played important roles for the club and were in good form. Vidmar did not name who the replacements will be.

While their absence has proved a headache for Vidmar, one of his other concerns he has worked a lot on since arriving is the mental aspect of the match, especially with Adelaide being overwhelming favourites to win the match.

"A lot of people have already started thinking a little bit further than that first game, but they're going to be tough," Vidmar told AAP.

"They've had a fair bit of experience playing in that competition last year, this is the first time we're actually going into the tournament.

"Every team in our situation dreams of playing Manchester United, but our sole focus now is on playing Waitakere."

Reds captain Travis Dodd believes the hard slog the team went through to make it to the final of the AFC Champions League will keep their feet firmly on the ground and has them a very tight knit group.

"It's been a hectic couple of months, been a challenge for everyone, and the players have definitely grown closer," he said.

"We've spent a lot of time away and been in each other's back pockets for a while, so I think the team atmosphere has definitely brought the players together a lot more, and hopefully we can keep it going."

The winner will back up three days later to play Asian Champions Gamba Osaka, a clash which Adelaide is highly motivated for, after the Japanese side accounted for them easily in the two-legged final of the AFC Champions League last month. The winner of that match will then play Manchester United in the semi final of the tournament.

Thursday-s match against Waitakere can be seen live and exclusive on SBS from 9.15pm, with the network to show all Adelaide matches live if they advance further into the tournament.