Football 2 years ago

Wanderers peaking for grand final: Santalab

  • Wanderers peaking for grand final: Santalab

Western Sydney top-scorer Brendon Santalab has warned Adelaide United's staunch defence to expect a Wanderers outfit in peak finishing form at Sunday's A-League grand final.

Adelaide boast the best defence in the league and have lost just one of their past 20 games, winning 15 in that span.

But the Wanderers have netted 11 goals in their three most recent matches, including the weekend's epic 5-4 extra-time semi-final comeback triumph over Brisbane.

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Santalab himself is responsible for five of those, and foreshadowed an onslaught at Adelaide Oval.

"We've scored 11 goals in the last three games and we're very confident now in front of goal," the super-sub turned starter said.

"It indicates that we're on the right path at the right time.

"The grand final couldn't come at a better time and I think they'll be wary of our goal-scoring ability at the moment."

Little splits the two sides, each chasing a first title.

Fluidity and free-flowing attack is the order of the day at both Spanish-infused clubs, and perhaps tellingly their three meetings this season have all been draws - the past two scoreless.

"That's probably down to the great defensive structure of Adelaide, and our side as well," said Santalab, who has scored 11 goals this season.

"So it's going to be an intriguing match, that's for sure.

"We'll have to find ways to break them down."

Adelaide's consistency cannot be questioned.

The manner in which Guillermo Amor's squad demolished Melbourne City 4-1 in last Friday's first semi-final was a case in point.

The Wanderers, while demonstrating intense discipline and focus in their impressive but gruelling fightback against the Roar, were exposed defensively.

However, Santalab backed his team to tighten up, and also put to bed any suggestions they may have already played their grand final.

"That's great if people think that," he said.

"We know it was a tough game against Brisbane ... but we responded very well and we'll take that confidence into the grand final."

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