Wanderers aim to punish Sydney FC in derby

October 15, 2012
By Angela Habashy

Western Sydney say they have no fear of Alessandro Del Piero's Sydney FC and plan to exploit the glamour club's injury-hit defence to win Saturday's historic A-League derby clash.

Far from intimidated, the league newcomers sense the chance to sink the boot into a Sydney FC team who have leaked five goals in losing their first two matches and must rejig their central defence again after Adam Griffiths (hamstring) joined Pascal Bosschaart on the sidelines.

"We'll have a few video sessions later in the week and see where we can punish them," said Wanderers goalkeeper Ante Covic on Tuesday.

"They've leaked in a few goals in the last few games and they've got a few injuries out back.

"So we're not scared of them at all and we're going to go out there looking for three points."

The Wanderers host the Sky Blues on Saturday night in a sell-out at the 22,000-seater Parramatta Stadium for the first Sydney derby.

With Wanderers also seeking their first win after a draw and loss, an air of desperation will add to a clash which features Del Piero and Wanderers star import Shinji Ono.

"Obviously there's the hype with the marquee players," Covic said.

"It's such a big game for us to really stamp our authority on the derby and get back up there in the league."

Covic, a former Melbourne Victory gloveman, has been part of the always heated tribal atmosphere of the Melbourne derbies and predicted Saturday's clash would match them.

"The Melbourne derbies, they were fantastic. The atmosphere was unbelievable.

"But I think the passion and the atmosphere here is going to be just as big.

"There's a different feel to derbies there's a different passion, you go out there with a bit more fire in the belly."

As for how to combat Del Piero, who scored from a sensational free-kick just outside of the box in Sydney's loss to the Jets, Covic said he just has to make sure "I catch the ball."

"Yeah it was a nice little free-kick he took there," he said.

"From that kind of position and that quality of player, what do you do?

"We just don't want to give away unnecessary fouls in and around the box in any game and come this weekend probably even more so."