Galekovic happy to be home at Hindmarsh

January 7, 2009
By Ian McCullough

Eugene Galekovic says a return to Hindmarsh Stadium can't come quickly enough for Adelaide United as Aurelio Vidmar's side try to regain top spot on the A-League ladder against Newcastle on Friday.

Galekovic, whose performances in goal have been a key factor in United's excellent season, said he is looking forward to a decent surface again after playing on a Telstra Dome pitch he said was the worst he'd ever seen.

"It was disgraceful the pitch in Melbourne," said Galekovic.

"There was still stuff stuck in the surface from the New Year's Eve party. They said it was better than when Queensland played there last week, but it was the worst pitch I have ever played on as a professional.

"It just showed a lack of respect for football, it would never have happened if there had been a footy (AFL) game on and that is wrong."

Prior to Tuesday's 1-0 defeat to Melbourne, Adelaide beat Sydney 2-0 at Adelaide Oval on a pitch Galekovic said was too hard and unsuitable for football, so a return to Hindmarsh is a welcome relief for the 27-year-old.

Adelaide's Club World Cup exploits have led to a backlog of fixtures and Friday's game will be the team's third in seven games.

They will then host Queensland Roar on Wednesday.

Coach Aurelio Vidmar refused to use fatigue as an excuse for a flat performance in the 1-0 defeat to Melbourne and Galekovic said the players have no issues with the number of games they have to play.

"We are match-fit and battle-hardened and the time we have spent together as a group in Asia has really bonded us," he said.

"This is the closest team I have ever played for and we have been through a lot together, but until we win something, we have nothing to show for our success and that drives us on."

Despite Newcastle being bottom of the table, Galekovic said the Jets are a better side than their position suggests.

"They won the A-League last year with pretty much the same group of players so there is plenty to be wary of," he said.

"They will be playing without pressure and that can sometimes bring out the best in teams, so we will not be underestimating Newcastle."

Galekovic's fine form since signing from Melbourne Victory last year earned him a recall to the Socceroos squad after a four-year absence and he's hopeful his form will help him be part of Pim Verbeek's Asian Cup plans later this month.

"It would be fantastic to be involved for the Indonesia game and it would cap off the perfect season to win the A-League and play for the Socceroos."