|By STEVE ORME
Newcastle coach Gary van Egmond has warned rivals his Jets are far from the finished product despite their strong start to the A-League season.
The Jets came from behind to defeat the Western Sydney Wanderers 2-1 in a hard-fought encounter at Parramatta Stadium on Saturday.
The victory was Newcastle's fourth in six matches this campaign to lift them temporarily into second spot on the table on equal points with Adelaide.
"I still see there's quite a bit of improvement in us," van Egmond said.
"James Brown's only just got back for his second game, we've got a couple out injured and the Young Socceroos are away.
"It's been a little bit disjointed this front part of the season but once we get everyone back and have some good competition for places it should be good."
Van Egmond conceded the Wanderers were the dominant side throughout but praised his team's improved defensive effort in the win.
"Even in the first half for the first 10 or 15 minutes we were on the back foot and they scored but then we changed things up a little bit and we got back on level terms and got our nose in front at half-time," he said.
"In the second there were very brief periods where we controlled it but for the main part it was one-way traffic.
"But from that the actual way that we defended our box and the way in which we really dug in and worked for each other and didn't concede was good."
Asked if the fact his side are yet to keep a clean sheet this season is a worry, the coach replied: "It is a concern but by the same token we look like we've always got goals in us.
"With the players that we have in the front third now there always seems to be the possibility of us scoring when we do have that period in the game of being in control and creating opportunities.
"From that point of view it's great but we still need to get better at controlling the game and eliminating challenges for the opposition."
Meanwhile, Western Sydney Wanderers coach Tony Popovic says his side's inability to convert their opportunities cost them a certain three points.
"You've got to put away your opportunities, that's how simple it is," Popovic said at the post-match press conference.
"We haven't been outplayed by anyone in this league so far. We've been in every single match.
"Today's probably some of the best football we've played this season and we came away with nothing from the game."
Marquee man Shinji Ono was a standout for the hosts in a losing cause, setting up his side's only goal and terrorising the Jets' defence throughout.
"He was good, especially early on was probably the best he's been at the start of the game," Popovic said of the Japanese superstar.
"His passing range and creativity was there for everyone to see and it's a shame he didn't get the goal in the second half because he certainly deserved a goal today."
Popovic confirmed skipper Michael Beauchamp was a late withdrawal due to a virus but is confident the veteran will be back to face the Glory in Perth next Sunday.