Reds seek ACL redemption

Adelaide coach Aurelio Vidmar has called on his side to seek redemption in its upcoming Asian Champions League campaign after the Reds hopes of making the Hyundai A-League finals all but evaporated in a 2-0 loss to Melbourne on Saturday night.

Adelaide coach Aurelio Vidmar has called on his side to seek redemption in its upcoming Asian Champions League campaign after the Reds hopes of making the Hyundai A-League finals all but evaporated in a 2-0 loss to Melbourne on Saturday night.

Adelaide, which has finished top two in three of their four previous Hyundai A-League campaigns, sits rock bottom, eight points out of the top six with just three matches remaining. Nothing short of a miracle would see Adelaide make the playoffs and Vidmar said the Asian Champions League loomed as a chance for the team to make amends for its poor season.

"There's certainly a chance to get some redemption in terms of what's happened this year. It will be a different kettle of fish. Absolutely we need to get a lot stronger, a lot stronger in the ACL," Vidmar said.

The previous time Adelaide made the Asian Champions League was after season three, the only other time it failed to make the finals.

The Reds marched all the way to the ACL final in that campaign and that gives Vidmar some hope that things can turn around when the continental tournament gets underway in late February.

"We need to get both mentally and physically stronger. We've introduced (Argentine) Marcus Flores into the squad and hopefully here might be a possibility of getting one or two players, but that won't happen until later on," he said.

While he is keen to explore the options he might have at his disposal ahead of the Asian Champions League campaign, Vidmar is also keen on building confidence within the squad which means it is unlikely he will make wholesale changes in the final three matches of the Hyundai A-League campaign.

"At this point of time, my thinking is only playing the strongest possible team. There will be a time to blood youngsters and there will be a time to change your team, but I think we need as much cohesions as we possibly can going into the last few games and leading up to the Champions League," he said.

Adelaide's opening ACL match is against the Pohang Steelers on February 24 at Hindmarsh Stadium. The Reds' remaining Hyundai A-League matches are against Wellington (away), Brisbane (home) and Newcastle (away), leaving them just 10 days to prepare for the ACL.