van’t Schip: It’s a Derby, it’s a special game


City Head Coach John van’t Schip says Saturday’s Derby has the potential to give his side the spur it needs ahead of their run towards the Hyundai A-League Finals Series.

Not only is there Derby pride on the line but Saturday’s six pointer will see the winner bridge the gap to the leading pack and the Dutchman believes the match will be a matter of who wants it more.

“The game is going to be totally different from the first game and the second game,” van’t Schip said.

“We take away things of course (from the last game) but we know their strengths and we know their weaknesses, it’s exactly the same for them, so it’s just who really wants to want it tomorrow.

“I think that’s the main thing. I think it’s about preparing ourselves, making sure there is a good team spirit and at the end of the game you’ll see.”

The Head Coach was coy on whether Alex Wilkinson will start in the Derby but said he was impressed with the Socceroo’s progression in his first week at the Club.

“He’s shown a good physical apperance,” he said.

“He’s kept on training during the break and it was also good for him because he was playing for a long time and he made a good impression this week so he’s going to be in the squad.

“He’s been training this week and he’s been training the last few weeks so it’s not that he’s coming out of not doing anything, we will make a decision on what type of role he will have tomorrow.”

Wilkinson was one of five inclusions to the City roster during the January transfer period and van’t Schip believes his squad will be poised to make a big impact in the latter stages of the season.

“I think at this moment, we’re actually in a second building phase of this year compared to the team that we started with,” he said.

“I think it’s now building towards the end of this season and getting the team functioning stronger physically and with the way that we play.

“Looking at that, I’m happy. I’m happy with the players that have come in, I’m happy with the possibilities that we have now.

“(This weekend) is a game to show we can deliver and that has to do with getting players to the physical level they can be in the coming weeks towards the end of the league.

“I’m more than confident with the players that we have and the places we can go.”

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