By Peter Desira
(Herald Sun, Monday 13 November 2000)
Melbourne Knights coach Vlado Vanis last night admitted he would be the first to feel the pressure after his side’s collapse in yesterday’s derby.
Vanis did not attend the aftermatch press conference, but answered a knock on the side’s dressing room door after he had spoken to the players for 15 minutes at the end of the 4-1 drubbing.
“We were outclassed,” Vanis said.
“We’ve now got the worst defensive record in the league and it’s all the harder to take because I was a defender all my life.
“We’re making basic silly mistakes and that’s killing us.
“No one is going to wear the excuse that this is a young inexperienced side for ever … everyone is going to say, ‘you’ve got the opportunity and the chance to prove yourself: take it or leave it’.”
Asked whether he would seek an experienced defender to add to the squad, Vanis hinted that his position would be the first to come under scrutiny and he needed something more urgent than waiting for an experienced defender.
“One thing that I know is that I will bring Adrian Cervinski into the side for next week’s clash against Sydney United,” Vanis said.
Knights supporters were up in arms about the two penalties awarded to South in the clash, but Vanis refused to use the refereeing as an excuse.
“I want to see the game again on video.
The second penalty may have been a bit harsh.
Sasha (Ognenovski) said afterwards that he didn’t touch the player,” Vanis said.
“With the first one, Jason (Vukadin) really should’ve cleared the ball well before he was forced into the challenge.”
The Knights have now sunk into the lower reaches of the table after five rounds and the biggest problem will be to lift morale in a team that was so soundly beaten yesterday.