Adelaide United coach John Kosmina described Sydney's victory over his Reds as 'highway robbery' after the Sky Blues grabbed a late winner against his side on Sunday.
Adelaide United coach John Kosmina described Sydney's 2-1 victory over his Reds as 'highway robbery' after the Sky Blues grabbed a late winner against his side on Sunday.
Following a cagey first half that saw Sydney seize the lead just before the break through Joel Chianese, Adelaide returned fire to dominate the second half.
The Reds were menacing going forward and found an equaliser almost immediately after the break when midfielder Fabian Barbiero poked home team-mate Sergio van Dijk's downward header.
Adelaide continued to threaten Sydney's goalmouth with chance after chance but could not find a way through an in-form Ivan Necevski in goals for the Sky Blues.
The failure to break down the visitors resulted in a goal against the run play via substitute Mitchell Mallia who finished coolly 10 minutes from time to give Sydney an unlikely victory.
Despite a sloppy first half Kosmina felt his team deserved to win given an 'unbelievable' second half performance.
"I think we deserved all three points and I don't think anyone at the ground including the Sydney people thought we didn't ... even (Sydney FC Football Director) Gary Cole felt it was highway robbery," Kosmina said.
"We changed the shape and didn't really have a lot of time to practice it this week, but I thought we did really well for the first 20 minutes ... we had some great opportunities to create goal scoring chances."
"But then we dropped off a little bit too much and let them back in the game so we talked about engaging them and getting a little bit higher up in the second half."
"Our finishing was better this week but we can't buy a goal at the moment."
"I can't complain about the performance. The performance in the second half was unbelievable."
Reds captain and goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic shared a similar view.
"The first half we knew our pressing probably wasn't great but our second half was a brilliant 45 minutes," Galekovic said.
"Obviously we were down one nil but we could have easily have made it 2-1 in our favour if Ivan (Necevski) hadn't of have had a great game and kept them in it."
The loss has condemned Adelaide to ninth spot on the table, five points off Sydney in sixth and all but quashed their hopes of a finals berth.
Despite needing to win all of their last five games to have any chance of finishing in the top six, Kosmina is refusing to throw in the towel.
"You don't ever pack it in, ever," Kosmina said.
"It's going to be tough ... we've got five games left with 15 points available which could give us 38 points, so we might get in."