The Friendship Cup provided an accurate barometer for both the Melbourne Knights and Sydney United to evaluate their progress for the 2012 campaign.
For a club starved of silverware, United’s 2-1 win at Edensor Park on the weekend may have momentarily quenched the thirst for success, but Knights coach Paul Magdi? believes his side had no reason to feel downtrodden after the match, in the context of this season.
“All of these games are obviously in preparation for that first round against Hume. Regardless of the result, I’m happy with the boys and how they went out today.”
With first teamers in Ryan Filipovi? and Anthony Colosimo injured, aswell as the absences of recruits Jake Naki?, Marijan Cvitkovi? and Louis Fenton, the Knights side that played on Sunday is far from the finished product.
“These players are going to help us improve. Louis (Fenton) will giveus an extra dimension going forward, so I’m confident that we’ll go on to bigger and better things from here.”
United coach Jean-Paul de Marigny believes his side is in good shape for the upcoming season.
“Later on in the game fatigue and discipline became a factor, but we’ve still got a month to go. There are some very positive signs for us coming into round one.”
Knights president Andelko Cimera was also upbeat despite the result, due to the circumstances thrust upon the squad.
“I don’t think the score is all that relevant, it was a good opportunity to give a few of the boys we’ve got here a trial,” he said, moments before the flight back to Melbourne.
“The fact is we have a lot of injuries at the moment. We left about five starters at home, so I was happy with the game today. The game changed as it wore on and we made a few changes. A few of our younger players came on and did a good job, so we’ve got a lot to work with.”