Thursday, January 10, 2013
Next two home games vital: Del Piero
By Angela Habashy
He admits losing so often is a foreign experience but, far from being frustrated, Alessandro Del Piero says Sydney's next two home games are the perfect chance to resurrect their A-League season.A World Cup and UEFA Champions League winner, Del Piero also led his former club Juventus to no less than six domestic titles.So you can understand why being in a bottom-placed team that has lost nine times in 15 matches might feel unusual for the 38-year-old Italian legend.The Sky Blues have desperately lacked consistency this season but the one stable feature so far has been Del Piero's dazzling skill.He has every reason to be frustrated but the marquee star is intent on focusing only on the positive."I don't want to think about frustration," he said after training on Friday."Usually I don't lose too much during the season but this is what's happened."But I don't want to think about the wrong thing at the moment - I want to concentrate on what we can do."We have a chance to do something and get to the playoffs (finals)."We need to use the two home games to create not only a win but to start us (on a roll) to get more wins."The Sky Blues face Melbourne Heart at Allianz stadium on Sunday before hosting Wellington next week.The Heart have had a similarly inconsistent season.They too sat on the foot of the ladder but, after two wins on the trot, sit in sixth place.Coach Frank Farina's first match at Sydney's helm was the round-nine stalemate against the Heart.Sitting only four points adrift of a finals spot, Farina is all too aware how crucial the next two games are."It's been a bit of a rollercoaster ride since then (round nine)," Farina said."There's been quite a lot of changes each week forced on us because of injuries and suspensions."But we've only got 12 games to go, so this game against Heart and the next one against Wellington are very important for us."In that round-nine encounter, Del Piero was fouled numerous times.The Italian playmaker has unsurprisingly become one of the most-fouled players in the league as rival teams attempt to nullify his impact.But while joking he was going to put a call in to Heart coach John Aloisi before the game, Del Piero said "what happens on the field stays on the field."When asked if he thought he was being fouled too much, he said: "Sometimes my legs say that but I don't know."It's happened all my career. It's like that and it's not a problem for me."Del Piero wouldn't be drawn on whether he plans to stay on next season."I don't want to talk too much about the future," he said."The only target for me right now is winning Sunday's game."