Injuries force Corica juggling act
IT'S only round one but already Sydney FC is facing a test of attacking depth, with news Danny De Silva won't be risked for Friday night's opener against Adelaide United.
Days after Trent Buhagiar suffered a season-ending ACL tear, Far North junior and new coach Steve Corica confirmed fellow Central Coast recruit De Silva's troublesome hamstring wasn't quite recovered enough to make the trip south.
"He's maybe not ready for this week, but very close for the one after," Corica said at the Sky Blues' season launch on Wednesday.
"I'm looking forward to having him back. He's a quality player, we need players like that, a young talent as well.
"We want him fit and ready to go, especially with the FFA Cup final coming up as well."
It means skipper Alex Brosque, who's been rested in recent weeks with a calf issue and returned off the bench in the FFA Cup semi-final, is certain to start at Coopers Stadium.
"We've got Charles Lokolingoy as well who was probably a little bit behind Trent, but now it gives him an opportunity to step up and show what he's about," Corica said.
Buhagiar's absence is a cruel blow for the 20-year-old who'd very nearly cemented a regular starting berth with eight pre-season goals.
"It's just happened, so we've started to have a little look around and see what's available," Corica said.
"But there's a lot of depth in this squad and I believe in the boys and the staff.
"I'm gutted for Trent. He's been a new signing and he's been great in pre-season, it's just one of those things - unlucky in training."
Friday shapes as an intriguing test doubling as Corica's very first A-League match in charge since stepping into Graham Arnold's record-breaking shoes.
The 45-year-old admitted to feeling the obvious pressure of following such an act but, after an unbeaten pre-season, he was also confident.
"We've played 12 games in pre-season, 10 wins and two draws, so I believe in the boys," he said.
"They've fitted in really nicely, settled in well and there are no excuses.
"We know all the other teams will be hunting us down, it's up to us to be better".
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