Reds not giving up on second

Adelaide United coach Rini Coolen denied second spot is completely lost with Central Coast holding a four-point lead over the third placed Reds after Saturday night's 2-1 home defeat to the Mariners.

Adelaide United coach Rini Coolen denied second spot is completely lost with Central Coast holding a four-point lead over the third placed Reds after Saturday night's 2-1 home defeat to the Mariners.

Coolen accepted United's fate was out of their hands after they coughed up a chance to leapfrog the Mariners and claim a two-point lead in second place with three games remaining.

The Reds travel to face Gold Coast United on Wednesday night in another finals-defining encounter, with GCU snapping at Adelaide's heels - four points behind with a game in hand.

The Dutchman admitted snatching second spot might be a long shot with the Reds needing to win their remaining three fixtures and hoping for a Central Coast slip-up.

"I think you have to give everything until the last day to find out if you can get second spot back," he said.

"I think you always have to be positive, there's always a chance. If you start winning games you never know what happens. It's not easy because it's not in our hands. But to have a chance you have to win your games."

"I think a draw could be a good result (on Wednesday), but then you accept you won't be second anymore. But, that isn-t professional enough."

Coolen is set to unveil fellow Dutchman Andy Slory for his first game after his debut had been pushed back due to injury since his arrival in December.

Coolen hinted he will be unleashing the lightening quick attacking quartet of Slory, captain Travis Dodd, Matthew Leckie and Iain Ramsay for the must-win clash against Gold Coast.

Slory is rumoured to be even quicker than Young Socceroo Leckie and Coolen admitted it would be a perfect opportunity for the speedster to clock up some valuable game time heading into the finals.

"We have four attacking players for the wingers available at the moment," he said.

"Leckie, Slory, Ramsay and Dodd and we're going to start with at least two of them. They're all strong, they're all fit and two of them will be on the bench and come in during the game."

"That's why I'm taking Slory with us. He can do something at the end of the game. He's fit enough for that. He's trained hard for it. It's also good enough to have some play time for him, maybe for the week after."

United's newest signing, defender Dario Bodrusic will remain in Adelaide, with Coolen looking to debut the Croatian against Wellington at Hindmarsh Stadium on Saturday.

"Dario needs a couple more training sessions. We want him to stay here and not miss any training sessions and then he's available for the squad against Wellington," he said.

Eugene Galekovic and Robert Cornthwaite will both play their 100th A-League match against Gold Coast and become only the second pair to do so after Melbourne Victory's Kevin Muscat and Tom Pondeljak achieved the milestone in on March 7 last year.

United vice-captain Lucas Pantelis could have been the third player as he is also sitting on 99 appearances, but the diminutive midfielder won't be a part of the Reds travelling party.

Coolen said the decision was not based on form but more flexibility for the bench.

"Lucas is normally in the squad because you can use him at any moment during the game," he said.

"But we had to take a decision and you can't have three of the same players on the bench. He's not in the squad tomorrow. It has nothing to do with how he trained or played because that was good enough."