Ben Garuccio believes there is still plenty to play for in Adelaide United’s season, starting with a victory over Brisbane Roar at Coopers Stadium on Sunday.
Following the Reds’ spirited 3-3 draw against Jeju United in the AFC Champions League on Wednesday night, Garuccio admits Adelaide must consolidate their recent performances.
Baba Diawara opened the scoring for the hosts, before Sergio Cirio and Mark Ochieng immediately replied after twice falling behind to restore parity.
Garuccio believes the squad have competed well against Asia’s premier sides and stressed the importance of carrying momentum from the Jeju clash into United’s next encounter with Brisbane.
“I think in the two past games in the ACL (Asian Champions League) we’ve been very good,” Garuccio said.
“And maybe unlucky not to have come away with a win.
“Obviously the first game against Gamba (Osaka) was very tough at home and I think that was a little bit of reality check.
“Now we’re really matching it with those teams so we’ve to take it into the A-League this weekend.”
Garuccio said the Reds will continue to fight until the end of the season in a bid to win as many matches as possible.
“The coach (Guillermo Amor) said this morning we’ve got eight games to go,” he said.
“Three in the ACL and five in the league and our aim is to win all of them.
“We don’t want to finish the season with losses, we want to win and want to finish the season strongly.”
The 21-year-old further insisted the Reds have also not given up hope of reaching the top six of the Hyundai A-League and the Champions League knockout stage.
“While it’s mathematically possible it can happen,” Garuccio admitted.
“But for us it’s not so much, win and then we’re going to make finals.
“Let’s just win each game as it comes, obviously the ACL is very important and the next game we really need to get three points against Jeju.”
Garuccio, who has been one of Adelaide’s most reliable players, attributed his solid season to playing regularly.
The dynamic full-back has been a mainstay in the starting XI this campaign, marauding up and down the left flank with aplomb.
“I’ve been very happy just to play so many games,” he said.
“I think that’s been very important for me and I’ve said it time and time again with a long run of games comes better performances.
“So for me I’ve been thankful for the run of games that I’ve had.
“When I play I just try to repay the faith and just give everything I can for the team.”
Adelaide United host Brisbane Roar in Round 23 of the Hyundai A-League 2016/17 season on Sunday, 19 March at Coopers Stadium. Kick-off is at 4.30pm ACDT.