Popovic's Wanderers ready to fire against Adelaide

The coach of the reigning premiers believes his team are on the verge of producing their deadliest best form ahead of the visit of Josep Gombau and his players to Parramatta
Western Sydney Wanderers coach Tony Popovic has put Adelaide on notice ahead of their clash on Friday night, warning them that his unbeaten side still have plenty of room for improvement.

The Wanderers have made a solid rather than spectacular start to the new A-League season but gave a good indication of their potential in last weekend's 2-0 drubbing of local rivals Sydney FC.

While happy with the way his side have begun the season, Popovic expects more and has seen signs at training this week a complete 90-minute performance is right around the corner.

If he's right, that could spell trouble for Adelaide, who head to Pirtek Stadium after their first loss and still trying to adapt to new coach Josep Gombau's new system.

"Our first half (against Sydney) was pleasing to see way we controlled the game in terms of decision making, but we dropped off a little in the second half," Popovic said on Thursday.

"There's certainly some things that we can improve on.

"We feel the periods are getting longer in each game where we're playing the way we want to play.

"The players are getting fitter, getting stronger and they are really concentrating on their job.

"If we can improve on that and do it for the whole 90 mins we'll give ourselves a good chance to get the three points."

The Wanderers have enjoyed taking on Adelaide in their short history, winning two of the three clashes last season including a 6-1 demolition at 'Wanderland' in December.

There's a feeling that was the match that proved the catalyst for the club's remarkable debut season, going all the way to winning the Premiers' Plate before a narrow grand final defeat.

But Popovic insists it's not the time to look back, especially with the Reds a totally different proposition this season.     

"We haven't spoken about those games at all," the Wanderers boss said.

"That's like us speaking about us winning the league last year. That's done, that's gone.

"It's a new season and a new challenge so we're just concentrating on this Adelaide team.

"We played them in pre-season and it was a tough game and we saw the new style they're playing with their new manager.

"But we've prepared well to make sure we can nullify the way they play."

Adelaide are set to be boosted by the return of leading scorer Jeronimo Neumann and chief playmaker Marcelo Carrusca.

The pair missed the loss to the Central Coast last weekend but have had a strong week on the training ground and are likely starters on Friday night.

The Reds also possess one of the Wanderers' first-ever signings in Tarek Elrich, who made the switch from Western Sydney to Adelaide in the hope of finding more regular game time.

"I'm sure he'll give them some information which is normal when players move but it's great to see him out there," Popovic said of Elrich.

"He did great for the club. We've got a good relationship with him and it will be good to see him tomorrow night."

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