Football 3 years ago

I don't need Wanderers vindication: Popa

  • I don't need Wanderers vindication: Popa

For months Tony Popovic has said Western Sydney would get their mojo back, but he was never seeking vindication over the club's change of tack that would get them there.

Popovic's Wanderers stormed to their fourth A-League win on the trot on Saturday when goals to Mark Bridge and Federico Piovaccari dispatched Wellington Phoenix 2-1.

It's the first time since November 2013 that the team has achieved an equal run, following their forgettable 2014/15 season when they managed only four victories the entire campaign.

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The Wanderers' thrilling play spoke volumes in favour of the coach and club's evolution that started with a major off-season cleanout and followed with the arrival of Spanish players and assistant coach Andres Carrasco, brought in to infuse a more possession-based style than their previous defensive outlook.

This season's opening three rounds were like Groundhog Day, as each loss echoed with Popovic's steadfast insistence that results would come once his myriad new recruits bedded in.

With Western Sydney wallowing at the bottom of the table, some believed him - others didn't.

Now sitting pretty in third thanks to some pretty play, the headstrong manager said was never trying to prove a point.

"I don't need vindication or seek that," Popovic said.

"As a club we know where we're heading. The chairman, the CEO, the board - everyone's on the same page.

"We know where we want to be and the vision we have for the club, and we'll be rightly judged at the end of the year.

"Where we finish then is where we deserve to be, and if we've shown improvements in what we've been working on to evolve this club then we'll be delighted."

Refinements are needed, according to Popovic, who said the team's fluency on the ball was not up to par and warned they will only become more dangerous.

"As a coach you're never satisfied," he said.

"If I say today probably wasn't our best with the ball, then we still are a fair bit off where we want to be.

"In terms of fitness as well. You've got players coming back from injury, you've got Alberto who hasn't played for a few weeks.

"It's just his second completed game out of seven. You envisage he will get even stronger and the communication at the back will improve.

"There's a lot of room for improvement but you have to be happy when you win at home and its four in a row."

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