City Head Coach Michael Valkanis has expressed his disappointment in Sunday’s Elimination Final exit, saying his side were “just not good enough” against Perth in the winner-takes-all contest.
The side’s 2016/17 campaign came to an end with a 2-0 defeat at the hands of the Glory with goals to Diego Castro and Joel Chianese sealing City’s fate in the opening stanza.
Valkanis and his team will have an extended period to look back and reflect on not only the performance but the season as a whole and the Head Coach felt there were plenty of points in the match where his side have let themselves down throughout season.
“[I’m] very disappointed. I thought the first half an hour we didn’t turn up,” Valkanis said.
“We were impotent going forward and defensively, we did not defend those two goals well. There has been a lot of work into it and it’s the same problem week in week out. We’re going to take a little time to look back at it and review everything and see what we have to do as a club to be better next year.
“We’re already looking at planning for the future. It’s not going to take a final to realise there is a problem but there is not much you can change at the moment and you keep working.
City’s record against Perth this season doesn’t make for good reading, only picking up a draw in the four contests between the sides and conceding a total of 13 goals.
With a Semi Final spot on the line, redemption for last season’s Elimination Final loss seemed to have driven the Glory as they eased their way into the next stage of the competition.
“I think Perth has been a problem for us all season,” Valkanis said.
“It’s something we spoke about, in regards to their physically and our 1v1 battles. They are strong team and they have troubled us all season with their strength. Sometimes you can play as much as you like but you have to win your battles and you have to be desperate like they were.
“We have to improve. Were we desperate enough to block Castro’s goal? No. Djublic prides himself on blocking goals. We probably didn’t have any shots on target because he probably blocked three or four so that was the difference [on the night].”
The Melbourne City squad will shortly depart for the off-season as they will look to return to prepare for the 2017/18 season in June.
Before that, join the Club in recognising the Melbourne City Player of Year on Saturday 29 April. Click here to secure your place at City’s night of nights.