A match-winning performance against Adelaide could see Tomi Juric earn a Socceroos recall, but Wanderers coach Tony Popovic says the young striker must not get complacent.
Western Sydney Wanderers striker Tomi Juric is set to be rewarded for his strong start to the A-League season when Ange Postecoglou names his first Socceroos squad next week.
Juric put a compelling case forward for selection on Friday night, dragging his side off the canvas as he netted twice to lead the Wanderers to an impressive 2-1 win over Adelaide at Pirtek Stadium.
The 22-year-old's brace showcased all his talents, first hitting a rasping low drive from 22 yards out before shrugging off his marker to head home Jerome Polenz's cross.
After getting a taste of international football at the East Asian Cup earlier this year, the former Reds frontman has done all he can to win a spot in the squad for the upcoming friendly with Costa Rica.
Wanderers' boss Tony Popovic was reluctant to talk up his star striker for a Socceroos call-up and insists the youngster can deal with the growing hype over his talent.
"It won't be difficult (to keep him grounded). He'll be the same as the rest of the group," Popovic said.
"The players will take care of him and at our next session he'll start preparing for the next game. He's fitted in nicely and he understands the way we work.
"I think he's still got a long way to go but you can see the boy can score.
"I wouldn't say he had a good game but he got two goals which is his job."
Juric was involved in a number of talking points throughout the match and was perhaps lucky to escape with just a yellow card for a first-half tackle on Isaias Sanchez.
While denying the youngster was fortunate to stay on the field, Popovic concedes Juric does have to work on his temperament and tackling technique after a couple of questionable challenges in recent weeks.
"You can't change that overnight," the Wanderers boss said.
"We love his enthusiasm but it's not going to change quickly, that will happen with maturity.
"He's still a young boy. He's a quality player and it's up to us to get him through that part of his game but there's a lot going for the boy."
After going behind to Marcelo Carrusca's goal nine minutes after the break, Popovic praised his side's character for turning the result around.
"When you go behind to a deflection, the players could easily have crumbled under the weight of pressure and expectation but they came back and I'm very happy for the players," he said.
"It was a tough game but in end I think we certainly got a deserved victory.
"I'm very pleased to have come back from a goal behind at home and win the game."
Popovic said midfielder Mateo Poljak, who missed the win due to a quad problem, would be right to return for next Friday's away clash with the Melbourne Heart.
He was hopeful winger Youssouf Hersi would also be able to shrug off his foot injury and also be available.
Meanwhile, Adelaide coach Josep Gombau has put the spotlight on his own team's deficiencies, refusing to blame a couple of controversial incidents for the Reds' 2-1 loss to Western Sydney Wanderers on Friday night.
The Reds took the lead nine minutes into the second half but couldn't hold out the home side, with a brace from former Adelaide striker Tomi Juric handing the Wanderers victory.
But the visitors had every reason to feel aggrieved over a couple of tough calls from referee Jared Gillett.
Both Juric and Wanderers defender Jerome Polenz were lucky not to have been shown straight red cards for nasty looking tackles, while Gombau feels Aaron Mooy handled the ball in the lead-up to the equalising goal.
"For me it was handball because I was close but again the same...I don't want to talk about the referee," he said when asked about the Mooy incident.
"It doesn't matter now....you can talk a lot about these things but there's more important things.
"It's not easy being referee. He did what he can. On one day you can win by a mistake from a referee and on another day not.
"I don't want to speak about this. I'm satisfied with the work we did, I thought we played good football. We're improving week by week.
"I'm unhappy with the score because I think we had the chance to win but I'm happy with the way we played. We're improving."
Asked about the couple of nasty challenges – including Polenz' studs up clash to the knee of youngster Awer Mabil - which only produced yellow cards, Gombau said: "Of course you are worried (about those tackles).
"But this is football. When you keep the ball and when try to have possession of the ball you have more chance of the other team making more fouls on you.
"This is something the referees need to check and see and make right. I can't do nothing."