We need to be the better side – Talay

Ufuk Talay has admitted that his goal is to not just win matches but consistently be the better side.

Last weekend his side travelled down to Melbourne and were defeated 3-0, despite creating some good chances in front of goal.

This week, they welcome a struggling Western United to Allianz Stadium and he will be hoping to get the gift of three points as an early Christmas present.

“We need to turn the games we have played into results.

“In the last game we had plenty of possession and shots at goal but only three of them hit the target, so we are getting into the opposition box and creating those chances, we just need to be more clinical.

Fabio had a goal ruled out via a tight offside call

“With these next two home games [Wellington Phoenix on the 29th of December], we need to win and get six points on the board which starts with Western United,” Talay said.

“It’s about making the players understand their roles and where we want them to be to create more scoring moments.

“We are getting into areas where we should be scoring but we’re not effective with that final pass and that’s something we are trying to improve.”

One issue along with not taking chances that the Head Coach has highlighted is individual errors which he laments is costing them.

“Last week we had two errors which led to goals in transition moments and the game probably could have been different if Jakey [Girdwood-Reich] had scored that goal but the reality of it is, we didn’t.

Talay driving the players in training

“There has been progression and I think you can see that within the games. You can see the intensity that the boys want to go out and play with,” he added.

The intention is not to just beat the opponent. It’s to be the better team.

Talay also took some time to acknowledge the efforts of Rhyan Grant who celebrated 15 years with Sydney FC this week, an achievement which he thinks should be very highly regarded.

“He [Rhyan] is a fantastic person, fantastic human being first and foremost.

“15 years at a club is a massive achievement anywhere in the world.

“He may be getting a bit older now but he still has the same desire and ambition to be successful and that’s what we want from our players,” Talay said.

In terms of changes this week, Talay is keeping most of his cards close to his chest but hinted at the return of a creative midfielder.

“We want competition for spots and we will make the decision closer to the game [on who starts in goal].

“I thought Pava [Pavlesic] did nothing wrong and had a good game at the end of the day,” the Head Coach added.

“Maxxy [Burgess] had his second week with the group so he’s been training well so I think he’ll be involved with the team on the weekend.”

Catch Ufuk Talay’s side in action at Allianz Stadium this Saturday in their last match before Christmas including Macca’s Families on the Field.

Match Details

Sydney FC v Western United
Isuzu UTE A-League Round Nine
Saturday 23rd December 2023
Allianz Stadium, Sydney, NSW
Kick Off: 5:30pm AEDT
Gates Open: 4:30pm AEDT
Broadcast Live: Paramount+
Tickets: Click Here