Owusu in line for debut

Prized recruit Lloyd Owusu is set to make his Hyundai A-League debut ahead of schedule when Adelaide United plays the Gold Coast at Hindmarsh Stadium on Friday.

Prized recruit Lloyd Owusu is set to make his Hyundai A-League debut ahead of schedule when Adelaide United plays the Gold Coast at Hindmarsh Stadium on Friday.

Owusu had an unhealthy preseason with a bout of swine flu and pneumonia limiting his time on the training track. It was predicted the 32-year-old wouldn't be available for action until Round 4 but has impressed the Reds with his progress in the past few weeks.

United coach Aurelio Vidmar said the Ghana international was a 50-50 chance of getting some game time.

"He played about 45 minutes with the youth team on Tuesday night and he pulled up fine yesterday," he said.

Cassio, who missed last week's game against Sydney with the flu, is lacking match fitness but will also play on Friday while Daniel Mullen is also a chance of being named in United's final squad.

The big blow for the Reds is the injury to steady midfielder Paul Reid. He'll miss the game after complaining of adductor soreness after the loss to the Sky Blues.

Other first-choice players are slowly regaining fitness with Fabian Barbiero playing in a National Youth League game this week after battling osteitis pubis during the off-season while Kristian Sarkies is still a fortnight away with a calf injury.

Adelaide will go into its clash with the Gold Coast as slight underdogs but that's not worrying Vidmar.

He said the Reds might not have the firepower of their opponents but have the belief they can collect the three points at Hindmarsh Stadium.

"We are a little bit different so we'll play to our strengths and I'm very confident in our team and our group," he said.

"Everyone wants to play a nice attacking brand of football but you also need the players. They've certainly got those types of players who can do that."

"I think we are flying under the radar this season anyway, not too many people have given us much hope of having a successful season which is fine by us."