Newcastle Jets coach Gary van Egmond is quietly confident that his side can upstage the high-flying Brisbane Roar in Saturday night’s Hyundai A-League clash at Ausgrid Stadium.
Newcastle Jets coach Gary van Egmond is quietly confident that his side can upstage the high-flying Brisbane Roar in Saturday night-s Hyundai A-League clash at Ausgrid Stadium.
The Roar have been on an amazing unbeaten run that stretches back to the early rounds of last season and if they draw or win against the Jets they will equal the remarkable 35-game unbeaten streak of the Eastern Suburbs Rugby League team from the 1930s that currently stands as the all-time best in Australian sport.
However, the van Egmond believes the Jets, who are unbeaten at home this season, have the ability to defeat their highly credentialed opponents.
"Any team can be beaten. They come here with our respect but definitely not fear. There is a big difference in that," van Egmond said.
"You have to acknowledge how well they have done. They are in a position where they are playing away from home. We are playing at home and we will have a real Newcastle go."
Van Egmond said he had taken plenty of out the Roar-s past two matches a 2-2 draw with a nine-man Victory outfit and a 1-1 draw at home against the Wellington Phoenix. But he said the Jets game plan would not be solely based on defence.
"Even with the way Wellington played it made it very difficult for Wellington to score and even though they scored on the counter but it is difficult to win the game, so we are going to go with a bit more of a positive attitude," van Egmond said.
"We can play nine behind the ball and maybe we will get a goal on the counter but I just don-t see the longevity in that. I don-t see where you are then going to be able to change your team into a team that looks to dominate games."
"What we have been doing is looking to see how we can control the game and that means playing in the opposition half and part of that is ensuring that when we are in possession we are putting players into certain areas to know what we are going to do."
"Can we do that quick enough and consistently enough over 90minutes? I believe we can, and come Saturday I hope it comes to fruition."
And while the Jets boss said he would love to win the most important thing this Saturday is for his side to keep progressing with playing the game according to his game plan.
"It is about the performance. We have to ensure we are better than we were last week. We had a 20-minute period against Perth where we were exceptionally good and we scored two goals but we have to ensure that we turn those 20 minutes into 90 minutes. And that for us is the benchmark. We have to keep on bettering ourselves."
In team news, the Jets welcome back hard-working midfielder Ruben Zadkovich while Brazilian defender Tiago has also been included in the 18-man squad. Michael Bridges is still getting back to full fitness after a week-long virus and will most likely make his comeback next week.