'We have a lot of work to do': Kurz urges goal-shy Adelaide to be more clinical
Scoring goals has at times been a difficult talking point for Marco Kurz during his two-year tenure at Adelaide United.
Indeed, a run of just two goals scored in their last three matches has Reds fans nervous that the wheels could fall off just seven rounds out from the Hyundai A-League Finals Series.
With United's never-ending search for a consistent striker adding fuel to the fire, the question on the tip of every journalist's lips at Marco Kurz's pre-game presser on Thursday was how he would go about solving their offensive woes.
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"Sometimes [the issue is] the quality of the crosses but also the box position. We need players in the box, that means first post, second post and the edge of the box," Kurz said.
"We have a lot of work to do but not only with crosses, also after pressing we had a couple of good counter chances but we didn’t find the target and that’s one our issues, we can do much better."
Adelaide's most recent result - a 0-0 result against the Jets at McDonald Jones Stadium - saw the Reds take more shots and attempt more crosses than Newcastle, a familiar sight for Kurz's sore eyes.
"We saw that we had a lot of good chances, but we didn’t score," Kurz said.
"That is one thing we need to improve for our next games, that we can find an easy way to finish, that we must finish and that we score goals."
With Nikola Mileusnic's return indefinite and Apostolos Stamatelopoulos yet to feature since his injury layoff, pressure remains on George Blackwood and recent signing Jordy Thomassen to put the ball in the back of the net, something the latter has failed to do since his signature on loan from De Graafschap.
However Kurz leapt to the defence of his strikers, and suggested the goal scoring burden should not solely rest with the Dutch import.
"Each minute he plays he is closer [to scoring], but its not only Jordy.
"It’s allowed for every player to score a goal, we have 10 field players on the pitch and every player’s welcome to score.
"George and Jordy have played two or three times together, and to find a rhythm takes time.
"I saw a couple of good chances in the last game and now we must find the right solution in the right situation, I’m positive that we can score goals in the next game."
A difficult encounter pits the fourth-placed United against the second-placed Sydney FC, a side who have also struggled to find the net freely in recent times.
But despite the question marks over Adelaide's offensive output, the German tactician pointed out the importance of stopping the Sky Blues.
"We have to control their offensive players.
"Le Fondre, Ninkovic, also their attacking full-backs, if you control them and you play disciplined and finish the counter chances you get for sure in Sydney, then you have a good chance of getting a result there."