Head coach Carl Robinson on how the team has been tracking and Friday night’s familiar foe.
The Red & Black are back in action on Friday night to face Newcastle Jets, a side they got one over two weeks ago at McDonald Jones Stadium.
The Wanderers have had plenty of time to prepare for the fixture and will be flying high after putting in some resilient performances against both Sydney FC and league-leaders Central Coast Mariners.
The break in the lead-up has given head coach Carl Robinson and his men ample time to prepare for another tough meeting.
“(The lead-up) has been fine, we took a couple of days off after the second game to get refreshed again, we did a little bit of training and we built up to a normal Friday night game this week,” said Robinson.
“It’s nothing different, it’s important that the players are rested as well because two games in three days is not ideal but that’s part and parcel of the A-League this season.”
It’s been an interesting start to the A-League season with the Mariners doing a 180 degree flip on where they finished last season, now sitting on the top of the table.
With only one point separating the Top Four clubs from the Top Six on the ladder, it’s been a tighter start to the competition than in previous seasons.
“What you’ve had in previous years is Sydney or one or two of the other teams flying away at the start,” explained Robinson.
“I think this season what’s happened and it’s shown in the first four rounds that any team can be any team on their day.
“What is says to me, it shows a mentality of players and it shows that if you don’t turn up one day and you think you’re just going to win a game of football, that you’ll be mistaken because the league is so close.
“That’s what you want, that’s what supporters want and that’s what players want with all these games to be competitive. It’s very hard to predict who is going to win each weekend.”
Robinson will be hoping that his side head into Friday night’s clash against the Jets with the right mentality, looking to repeat the feats of their victory in enemy territory.
The Jets have had some solid performances recently and have had little to show for it until their most recent match against Wellington Phoenix.
But points on the ladder and off field talking points aside, Robinson has prepared his men for what will be another difficult meeting with the Jets.
“They’re a difficult team, they’re a good team but so are we,” said Robinson.
“We’ve got good players, we’ve got a really good squad at the moment.
“It’s making my job difficult to pick a team which is what gives me plenty of options.
“So we look forward to the game, it’s going to be a good game of football which is what I want every week and it’s going to come down to who performs on the day.”
Robinson earned his first three points as Wanderers head coach against his former side and has been building momentum ever since.
But for the Red & black this is only the start of Robinson’s project and task to bring success back to the club.
Reflecting on some of the team’s recent performances and how the side has been tracking, Robinson still believes the Wanderers can get better.
“If you don’t get results, people are like well it’s not quite worked or been a slow start,” said Robinson.
“If you do get results, people say you fast-tracked.
“I know where we are as a club. I’ve brought in a couple of players through that door since I’ve walked in that have helped that group get to a level that I think they can.
“I still think we’re not performing to our maximum levels at the moment, I still want to try to bring in one or two more in, and I’ll continue to give opportunities for young players.
“So are we where I thought we would be right now? Probably a little bit ahead of where I thought we would be and that’s credit to the players that have bought into what I want and they understand their roles and responsibilities within the tactical framework.
“But I want them to play with enjoyment, freedom and a smile on their face.”
Western Sydney Wanderers v Newcastle Jets
Friday 29 January, 7:05pm