With 10 matches left in the Hyundai A-League season, Perth Glory FC defender Marc Warren and midfield general Gyorgy Sandor say the best is yet to come.
After signing five new players during the January transfer window, including the return of home-grown Socceroos Shane Lowry and Adam Taggart, the team is determined to make the play-offs.
With the team sitting in 7th spot, Warren said there was no room for excuses.
“I don’t think there’s any time for the new players to come in and get used to anyone. They have to come in firing which they have done. Shane Lowry done brilliant (against Victory) and the new boys coming in so they didn’t have much time and they’ve gelled” he said.
“Training’s gotten better. We’ve got a lot of depth in the squad, with players competing for spots and it’s kind of boosted everyone’s will to win.”
After a 12-month hiatus, Warren returned to football with a mission to break into Glory’s starting 11. He said this season had been his best and surpassed all his expectations.
“I didn’t expect to come and play as much as I did. I came in with all intentions of getting into the first 11. I got myself into the 11 and am doing everything I can to stay in. The gaffer put faith in me and Richie Garcia pulled me aside and told me this is the year to knuckle down. I don’t want to let them down, I don’t want to let the staff down and I don’t want to let the club down”.
He said the way he prepared for games this season was also different and was paying dividends.
“Preparation for games and mentally being in a good place, that’s my main thing which I didn’t do in the past” the former Sydney FC player said.
“I took a year off and found myself as a person and as a footballer so that’s kind of a major thing for me”.
“I am young but I am a leader in what I do. Everything’s perfection in what I do and I do like to help the younger boys too” Warren said.
“We’ve been told that it doesn’t matter how old you are as long as you’re a leader everyone should take charge, there’s 11 players on the field not just one.”
Sandor also echoed Warren’s sense of positivity.
After returning from an ankle injury which kept him out for several weeks the Hungarian international is getting back to form which he showed in the opening rounds of the season.
He praised his new teammate and compatriot Kristzian Vadocz who he played with for Hungary’s U-21.
“He’s mentally, technically and physically strong. I’m so happy because we play the next ten gams with a strong squad” he said.
“I didn’t know (Vadocz was coming) until he texted me a message and told me see you on the training session” he joked.
Sandor said he and the whole team would be disappointed if a finals berth slipped away.
“As a professional player you cannot be happy with 10th or 9th place. You always want to win the league but at least you want to be in the finals and we will be disappointed if this does not happen.”
Glory travels to Wellington this weekend to face its New Zealand rivals in the second leg of the Long Distance Derby Cup.
Glory then travels to Sydney to face the Sky Blues before returning to Perth to host Brisbane Roar on February 20.