Sydney FC are sweating on the relaying of a new turf at Allianz Stadium ahead of their home semi-final next week, after slating the state of the pitch following their 0-0 draw with Shanghai Shenhua.
Sydney FC players claimed they had to take extra touches just to control the ball while the poor state of the playing surface slowed the the pace of the game on Tuesday night in the last match to be played before the new turf is laid. Sydney FC controlled possession with a 71 per cent share against Shanghai, mustered 22 shots on target to the Chinese clubs none, but couldnt find a breakthrough in what was their last game of the tournament. Midfielder Adrian Mierzejewski said the condition of the field detracted from his teams playing style but did not use it as an excuse for the result.
“Everyone can see what kind of pitch it was today. Its not an excuse of course because last week was the exact same and we won against Victory. But with our offensive style we need to play on a good pitch. Its April, everyday its 30 degrees so I think its not difficult to make a good pitch. We have very important games, semi and of course a grand final so we expect and I believe that we will play on a good pitch,” he said.
Captain Alex Brosque echoed his teammate's sentiments on the pitch, suggesting it hampered their ability to control the ball.
“[Mierzejewski] is right. Its not up to scratch. Every time we come to this time of year it seems to happen. Its frustrating especially for players like him,” Brosque said. “Hes that good he doesnt have to look down, his touch as well is that good, but on that pitch you have to take a lot more care, a lot more touches, it slows the game down, it slows a lot of passes down. But from what I heard they are going to relay it so it should be fine for the semis.”