Scott Neville says the Jets paid the price for a sluggish start in their 2-0 loss to Adelaide United at Hunter Stadium on Sunday.
Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets defender Scott Neville says the Jets paid the price for a sluggish start in their 2-0 loss to Adelaide United at Hunter Stadium on Sunday.
Neville said that allowing Adelaide to get on the score board with less than a minute gone was the worst possible scenario for the Jets.
They early goal allowed the travel-weary Reds to sit back and absorb the pressure applied by the Jets, while remaining a threat on the counter-attack.
“Obviously conceding after two minutes put us on the back foot a little bit and I think we went into our shells a little bit at the start,” Neville said.
“It took us a little while to get out of that and finally play our own game.
“We try to play a high-pressing, up tempo game and conceding after two minutes definitely affected that because it meant Adelaide were able to sit in and play on the counter, which worked well for them.”
Making matters worse, Mark Birighitti-s send off in the 58th minute left the Jets with only 10-men on the park, effectively killing off their hopes of a comeback.
“We just wanted to control the tempo of the game by getting up in their face and winning the ball high up the park to try and create some chances,” Neville explained.
“Obviously the sending off killed us a little bit as well because we went down to 10 men and being a man down makes it hard to press high as well.”
The Jets have elected not to appeal the red card given to Birighitti by referee Shaun Evans, meaning the goalkeeper will miss Saturday-s blockbuster clash with Sydney FC at Allianz Stadium.
Neville said the Jets will be looking to bounce back from their opening round loss to Adelaide with a strong showing against the Sky Blues.
“Hopefully there will be a big crowd there next week with Del Piero and Heskey both there on the same pitch,” he said.
“I think the boys will just have to knuckle down, train hard this week and just focus on what we have to do next week.”