Wanderers coach Josep Gombau during the Western Sydney Wanderers v Brisbane Roar A-League match at ANZ Stadium, Sydney. Picture: Brett Costello
Wanderers coach Josep Gombau during the Western Sydney Wanderers v Brisbane Roar A-League match at ANZ Stadium, Sydney. Picture: Brett Costello

Gombau: We need killer instinct

WANDERERS boss Josep Gombau has called on his players to find the ruthlessness to "kill the game", after his side gave up another lead to draw 1-1 with Wellington.

Western Sydney remain in sixth spot after failing to build on a first-half lead for the ­second week in a row.

Gombau's men missed chances to extend their advantage before the break but were penned back in the second half and in the end were glad to ­escape with a draw.

The Wanderers host fourth-placed Melbourne Victory on Friday night, and Gombau is certain to re-­emphasise to his players the need to capitalise on periods of domination.

Brendon Santalab had given his side the lead in the first half in Wellington, only for Matijia Ljujic to strike an equaliser with 15 minutes to go.

It means Western Sydney haven't scored a second-half goal in almost a month, but Gombau denied it was due his players' fitness.

"I don't think so," he said. "It's true we're not scoring goals at the end of the game, but I don't think it's because of a phy­sical reason.

"Sometimes in football it's just like this.

Brendan Hamill and Jerrad Tyson celebrate Brendan Santalab’s goal against Wellington.
Brendan Hamill and Jerrad Tyson celebrate Brendan Santalab’s goal against Wellington.

"The good thing is we are scoring, and we have the chances to score more. The last two games I think we've had the chances to win both games but we haven't taken them, and that's something we need to improve on.

"If we want to be in a good way in the league and the season, we need to take those chances and kill the games.

"(Against Wellington) we had the chance to go into halftime winning by more than one goal. But the second half changed; Wellington took more opportunities, they had more of the ball and more chances to score. In the end, it was a result that was fair."

Gombau hopes to welcome back Josh Risdon, Jaushua Sotirio and Alvaro Cejudo from injury against Victory, as well as the return from suspension of Robbie Cornthwaite and Chris Herd.

Despite the result against Wellington, Gombau insisted he saw more evidence the players were adapting to his methods after heavy defeats in the run-up to Christmas had cast an early cloud over his tenure.

"It's the mentality of the players," he said. "The very beginning when I came it was difficult. Whenever you have a big change like this, a change of coach, it is a difficult situation for the players. But they changed their mentality, they are open and I am so happy with them. They are putting 120 per cent in for every single game."



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