Graham Arnold wants to use learnings from Sydney FC’s two home Asian Champions League defeats in their final game of the group stage against Shanghai Shenhua.
The Sky Blues face the Chinese giants at Allianz Stadium on Tuesday night vying for a spot in the Round of 16, something that appeared an unlikely feat scarcely a month ago.
Sydney had just one point from three matches, losing twice at home, but a 4-1 away drubbing of Suwon Bluewings has thrown them right back in the mix.
Should Suwon fail to defeat Kashima Antlers in the other group game, the Sky Blues will go through on a head to head basis if they can down Shenhua.
Already eliminated, the Chinese side ventures to Sydney minus stars Obefami Martins and Fredy Guarin.
“If anything, it was a great time for us because we learned a lot of lessons and we learned a lot of one percenters that we’ve changed,” Arnold told a prematch media conference.
“The first game, if you reflect a bit on that, we were playing a little bit against the unknown because they hadn’t played a game.
“You saw how, tactically, we changed that last time so we now have two or three systems ready to go and we can adjust during games and make ourselves even greater than what we are.”
Shot-stopper Andrew Redmayne echoed his manager’s thoughts, hopeful Sydney could put into practice what they have learned.
“Facing different oppositions – I’ve been in the A-League for 12 years now – you kind of get used to the different teams playing different styles, but you come up against different players of a very high quality and playing in different systems,”
“There is other things that you have to be weary of and like Arnie said, we’ve learned from our first few games and we’re looking forward to implementing the one percenters that we have learned from at home.”
When the teams met in China, Sydney drew 2-2 having fought back from a 1-0 deficit.