United ready for hectic schedule

Adelaide United's squad will be close to full strength heading into its busy September, despite some setbacks on the training track earlier this week.

Adelaide United's squad will be close to full strength heading into its busy September, despite some setbacks on the training track earlier this week.

The Reds play five games in 16 days - which includes its home and away AFC Champions League quarter final clashes with the Kashima Antlers, and they'll need all hands on deck to make an impact.

There was some concern about the availability of Kristian Sarkies and Robbie Cornthwaite who rolled their ankles on Tuesday. But it's expected the duo will be cleared for training on Friday and pushing for selection next week.

It has been better news for Diego who is in his second week of training after recovering from a hamstring strain.

United coach Aurelio Vidmar said the 28-year-old was progressing well but hinted the midfielder might be an impact player, rather than a starter, against Melbourne Victory in Round 4.

"He needs match fitness obviously but he can only get in the small sided (practice) games that we are playing at the moment. He just needs to wait and get the opportunity," he said.

Vidmar was also pleased to see Cassio involved in the team's activities after struggling with a calf strain.

"Good to see him out today, he joined us for the second part of the session, very, very eager. It's pleasing that we are slowly getting bodies back," he said.

The A-League takes a break this weekend but it didn't stop the Reds from completing a fiercely competitive training session on Thursday. The session got heated at times which was a plus, according to Vidmar.

"That's an absolute positive because it's going to happen in a game, the good thing is once they finish training or a game and they come off the pitch it's all forgotten and that's how it should be," he said.

"It's been really interesting because generally you get five or six of the senior boys calling the shots but at the moment the boys who have been quiet in the past, they're the ones that are stepping up as well which is a really good sign."

Meanwhile Vidmar said he would've liked the team's September schedule to be more spread out but admitted the club could gain a lot from the challenging experience.

"It probably has its good points and its bad points, it's something that we are not used to, playing two games in week, and certainly five games in 16 days that's going to be a tough ask," he said.

"The J-League side, the Antlers, they are in recession at the moment so they don't go back until the 13th (of September), the day after we play the Melbourne game …so in a way we are in a very similar situation."