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    Adelaide United Confident Of Victory In A-League Final

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    Ali Swaidan
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    Adelaide United Confident Of Victory In A-League Final

    Post by Ali Swaidan on Thu Feb 26, 2009 6:03 pm





    Melbourne Victory may be the clear favourites heading into the Hyundai A-League Grand Final, but Adelaide United midfielder Paul Reid says the Reds are just as confident as their rivals heading into Saturday’s championship decider.

    Reid, who has missed just three games this season and been an integral part of United’s midfield make-up, believes The Reds have what it takes to clinch the club’s first Hyundai A-League championship and stun the parochial Telstra Dome crowd.

    “We know we’re going to go in as the underdogs, we had two disappointing performances against them [Melbourne] in the semi-final and they probably played the best they’ve played all season, so they can go in as confident as they like because we’re definitely going in confident as well,” Reid said.

    “We’ve got nothing to lose, we’re going there not expected to win and if we can play to our capabilities then we’ll definitely give them a real shake.”

    Reid’s remarks come as United look to score their first win over Melbourne in six attempts, and he identified Melbourne duo Archie Thompson and Carlos Hernandez as players The Reds need to contain to achieve the result on Saturday.

    “Archie Thompson is a really confident guy so he’s a real danger for us so the less time he has on the ball, his confidence is going to go down and if we can get in his ear a bit and give him a shake up, then it’s going to go a way to winning it,” he said.

    Reid combined with Jonas Salley and Fabian Barbiero to effectively close down Queensland Roar’s potent midfield in the Preliminary Final, and while Melbourne’s creative players boast the same capabilities to cut open a game, the 29-year-old believes The Reds can come out on top if they match it with the Victory in the middle of the park.

    “We know how much of a threat Melbourne are going forward so if we can limit the amount of time they have on the ball and then break forward as quickly as possible then that’s going to be our best chance of beating them,” Reid said.

    “We definitely have to close [Carlos] Hernandez down and every Melbourne player all over the park. If we can stop the ball getting into players like Hernandez then it will certainly stand us in good stead of winning the final.”

    If anyone knows what it takes to win against the odds, Reid certainly does.

    Back in the NSL (National Soccer League) Grand Final of the 1999-2000 season, Wollongong Wolves were 3-0 down to Perth Glory at half time, before the Wolves staged a remarkable fight back, with Reid scoring the equalising goal in the 89th minute to send the game into extra time before Wollongong eventually won the match.

    “You’ve just got to believe you can do it. The more they [Melbourne] win the more times we’re going to have the chance of beating them, so it has been five times this year but apart from the last two games we’ve put in really positive performances against them,” Reid said.

    “It’s 11 versus 11, men against men and basically it’s 90 minutes…so we’ve just got to go out there with the belief that we can do it.”

    The former Brighton & Hove Albion player also believes the selection of six of United’s players, in which he is one, into the Qantas Socceroos squad and Sasa Ognenovski’s call up to the Macedonian national team has given the playing group further belief for the Grand Final.

    “I think it boosts the confidence, it’s a great thing for the club and the players. But we’ve got our mind fully set on the Grand Final so we want to end on a high note for Adelaide and then we can concentrate on the Socceroos after that,” he said.

    “We’ve got a big job on Saturday in the Grand Final and want to end the season on a really positive note so that’s what we’re looking to do and then the six players can concentrate on the game on Thursday night.”

    A day out from The Reds departing for Melbourne to finalise preparations, Reid also had a message for all of the club’s fans ahead of Saturday’s season finale.

    “Keep supporting us, I know our luck is going to change and we’re definitely going to be trying to bring the silverware back to Adelaide,” Reid said.

    “This is the last chance to get silverware this season, the boys know that and it’s a really big incentive for us.”

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