Adelaide United coach Marco Kurz says his side’s run to a second successive FFA Cup final has been perfect preparation for the A-League season.
Adelaide will have the opportunity to overturn last season’s final defeat – a 2-1 extra-time loss against Sydney FC – after overcoming Melbourne-based NPL side Bentleigh Greens on Friday evening.
The Reds turned in a professional performance to earn a confident 2-0 win over the competition’s giant-killers, who bested Wellington Phoenix in an earlier round.
Goals in each half from Ben Halloran and Jordan Elsey did the job, with Adelaide looking much improved on earlier showings in the competition.
Kurz says the cup has complemented his side’s pre-season regime before the opening round of the A-League in a fortnight, which sees Adelaide host champions Sydney FC in a blockbuster match-up.
” (The FFA Cup) has been important because the pre-season is very long in Australia and it is very good to have official games,” Kurz said.
“The job is done for the pre-season.
“Our aim was to reach another final and now we can start to focus on the first home game in two weeks.”
The Reds’ opponents for the October 31 final will be determined on Saturday (today) evening when Western Sydney Wanderers host Sydney FC.
Adelaide are showing signs they will be a significant force in this season’s A-League in what’s the German coach’s second year at the club.
Another cleansheet at Bentleigh means Adelaide are the first side to reach an FFA Cup final without conceding a goal.
Kurz will have the opportunity to lead the team to their first silverware since winning the A-League in 2016, having won the first edition of the cup two years earlier.
“It was a very professional showing from our side and we are happy to reach the final again,” he said.
“The only mistake we made was not scoring enough goals but that’s OK.
“It is not easy to play against an NPL team and Bentleigh are a very good team.”
The new defensive partnership between Elsey and off-season recruit Michael Jakobsen is shaping as a key feature for the Reds.
“It (defence) is something we work on very hard at training,” Elsey said.
“Going into the final, we are very confident of not conceding a goal.”