North: We are still strong

Newcastle captain Jade North believes the recent controversies surrounding the club have only served to galvanise the side ahead of Sunday’s Hyundai A-League clash with the Adelaide Reds at EnergyAustralia Stadium.

Newcastle captain Jade North believes the recent controversies surrounding the club have only served to galvanise the side ahead of Sunday-s Hyundai A-League clash with the Adelaide Reds at EnergyAustralia Stadium.

The Jets go into the match without key players Joel Griffiths and Mark Milligan after both received a two-match suspension following red-card incidents in the 2-0 loss to the Wellington Phoenix last weekend.

In addition, Newcastle-s head coach Gary van Egmond will be relegated to the stands for a second successive week as part of his two-match suspension following his involvement in a post-match fracas in the club-s recent 2-2 draw with Perth Glory.

But North said the setbacks had brought the Jets players together and they are primed for a big match against the inform Reds.

"It was a little bit disappointing what happened on the weekend," he said.

"But we can take a lot of positives out of holding them (Wellington) out for such a long time with only nine men."

"We played well without them (Griffiths and Milligan). We were cruising with 10 men and could have even taken something out of the game with nine men."

"I thought defensively I thought we did really, really well. It was a little bit unfortunate that they got by us in the end but that happens in football sometimes."

"But I can feel there is some momentum going from that and things have been really positive at training."

North brushed off claims that the club was under closer scrutiny due to its recent run of ill-discipline and indicated the players will still be going into every tackle giving 100 per cent.

"I don-t look at it like that at all, " he said

"I just think everyone wants to beat us because we are the regaining champions and that has happened with everyone else who has won the title, they have struggled to get back into the four."

"I don-t think we are being unfairly targeted at all. We just have to control 11 v 11 on the field and just concentrate on our actions and what we do."

"We have everything to play for. And it is good to be back at home - we haven-t been here for a while and we are looking forward to it."

"We feel we only have to get a couple of wins and we are back into it. I know we keep saying ‘only a couple of wins and we are back into it- but I really feel that we can play well at home this weekend and get what we deserve."