Adelaide looking for A-League turnaround

Nov 15, 2017 - 6:30 AM The topsy-turvy nature of this season's A-League is underlined by the extraordinary turnaround in the fortunes of Central Coast and Adelaide United, who clash on Thursday.

Unbeaten Adelaide gathered five points from their first three games, while the winless Mariners picked up just one.

Fast forward three rounds and the Mariners have jumped above the Reds on the ladder.

Central Coast logged two draws followed by a confidence-boosting 2-0 home win over previously unbeaten league leaders Sydney FC.

Conversely, injury-hit Adelaide have lost three straight going into Thursday's game in Gosford.

"Tomorrow, it's important to make a good game and to get our confidence back," Adelaide's German midfielder Daniel Adlung said.

"I hope we've learnt from our mistakes and start to win again.

"It's very important for us tomorrow, this game, and also for the (FFA) Cup final on (next) Tuesday to get a better feeling.

"We have to stay compact first. That's our aim for tomorrow and we've trained this the whole week."

Mariners coach Paul Okon isn't paying any attention to ladder positions.

"It's going to be a difficult game," Okon said.

"Every game presents a new challenge, but we're playing at home.

"We're playing some good football, full of confidence, so hopefully we can get another win."

If the Mariners avoid defeat, it will be the first time in Okon's tenure they have gone unbeaten for four league games.

With captain Alan Baro suspended, Dutch midfielder Tom Hiariej will lead the Mariners.

"He was one of our best players last Friday night and I'm sure Tom will enjoy the responsibility of wearing the armband," Okon said.

Hiariej is one of only three Mariners to play every minute of their A-League campaign to date.

Adelaide regain one key player from injury, with central defender Ersan Gulum missing the three losses with a punctured lung.

"He's a very important player for us; we've lost a lot of experienced players," Adlung said.


* The last time there was an A-League draw between the Mariners and Reds was in August 2010, with 21 games being played since

* Central Coast have kept a clean sheet in their past two games. The last time they went longer without conceding a goal was a three-game stretch in 2011/12

* Adelaide have scored just one first-half goal in theirplast 13 games away from home.

Stats supplied by Opta

Source: AAP

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