Sydney FC boss Steve Corica felt his side could have gone on to take all three points after Adam Le Fondre equalised in their Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Season opening 1-1 draw at Adelaide United.
The reigning Hyundai A-League Premiers were largely frustrated in the first half of Friday night’s curtain raiser, going down to Scott Galloway’s strike in first half stoppage time, but produced an improved performance after the break to share the spoils.
The two sides will meet again, also at the Coopers Stadium, on October 30 in the FFA Cup Final, where Corica will be hoping his side can pick up where the left off.
He told his post-match press conference: “We almost got the win. I think we finished the stronger of the two teams, which was great.
“First half we defended very well. They went quite long early on and we dealt with that. Unfortunately they scored right on half-time, but other than that I thought second half we played pretty well.
"We expect to get better as the season goes along. They looked very fit and we ran over the top of them, especially in the second half, [and we were] maybe a little bit unlucky not to get the second goal that we were pushing for late on.
“They press very high and we came up with a plan at half-time to get around them and I think that it showed in the second half that we got forward a lot more.
“The game opened up a lot more because it’s difficult to press like that for 90 minutes and we took our chance very well.”
Adelaide United manager Marco Kurz echoed Corica’s view of the differing halves, admitting his side needed a second goal to kill off the visitors.
He said: “I think we played a very good first half, we had game control, good pressure on the ball, we didn't let Sydney have chances and we scored the first goal.
“In the second half, I think if you are going to beat Sydney you must score two goals and we missed maybe the last pass, the last consequence and the finishing.
“[Craig] Goodwin and [Ben] Halloran had good chances but it was not too bad and in the equaliser you saw the quality of Sydney. It’s a good team.
“If you play against Sydney you cannot drop back and go only in to defend. You must believe and trust and go in high press and we did this.
“From our side it was a very good game and we can improve for the next step.”