Reds raring for key Glory A-League clash

Adelaide interim coach Carl Veart says their clash with Perth is a must-win game in the Reds' bid to feature in the A-League finals.

Wanderers coach TONY POPOVIC.
Wanderers coach TONY POPOVIC. Picture: Matt King/Getty Images

In the midst of the A-League's mid-table logjam, Thursday night's clash with Perth shapes as a must-win challenge for Adelaide United at Sydney's Bankwest Stadium.

With three games to play, sixth-placed Adelaide are just a point ahead of Western United, who have two games in hand.

After beating Brisbane and drawing with Wellington, Reds interim coach Carl Veart said his side needed to deliver maximum points against the Glory before clashes with Sydney and Melbourne City.

"We knew coming in that we had the five top teams and we're not worried about what any of the other teams are doing," Veart told reporters on Wednesday.

"We just said it was important that we got off to a good start against Brisbane, and then build from that, and we knew that out of the five games, we have to win three-to-four of those games.

"So we can't afford to have another slip-up - we have to win tomorrow night to give ourselves the best chance.

"We don't want to rely on other teams - we just want to rely on ourselves."

Adelaide faded against the Phoenix and would have to be switched on all game against Perth, given the renowned fitness of Tony Popovic's team.

Perth are three points ahead of the Reds with a game in hand and are keen to bounce back after losing to Wellington.

Popovic said the Glory would be wary of Adelaide attacking in transition, but was confident his team could start turning dominant possession numbers into goals.

"We're creating good moments - it's a mixture of things where the team that we're playing has defended the action very well and, of course, we can do a little bit better with our final ball," he said.

"But we're certainly getting in the right areas and, although teams are deep, we're finding it easy at the moment to get in behind them.

"It's just the hardest part is scoring goals and, in our game, it always has been and always will be.

"But we're pleased with how our football's progressing."

Perth have their entire squad available for selection, while Al-Hassan Toure is the only hub-based Red sidelined.

STATS THAT MATTER:

* Perth are undefeated in their past four regular-season games against Adelaide

* Perth are the only team Riley McGree has played more than five A-League games against without scoring

* Adelaide striker Kristian Opseth is in form, scoring a goal in each of his past two games - after two in his previous 16.

Stats provided by Opta