Crook encouraged by Del Piero bow

09 October 2012 18:51:06 GMTPlus11

Sydney FC coach Ian Crook says there were plenty of positive signs that Alessandro Del Piero can gel with the rest of the team, despite the Sky Blues losing 2-0 to Wellington in his first match.

Alessandro Del Piero was praised for his display on his losing Sydney FC bow.

The Italian superstar worked tirelessly to try to lift Sydney at Westpac Stadium, but his A-League debut did not go to plan.

The Sky Blues produced a listless display, and Crook says Del Piero will take some time to adjust to the competition. He was happy with the Italian's performance, however, and says if he gets better service he will be able to exploit it.

Sydney play Newcastle at Allianz Stadium on Saturday, where they are expected to be without midfielder Terry Antonis, who suffered concussion against the Phoenix.

Crook says Del Piero will need help to find the back of the net.

If he can do that in a poor performance then I think that's a good sign. If we perform well, you'll see more chances from him.

Ian Crook

"All good players need good service too, especially players in the front third," Crook said.

"We've got the players to provide it. Things just didn't work out for us."

The coach added: "He's never really played just in the box.

"We feel that we need to have some rotation in there. If he comes short, somebody else goes long and that type of thing."

"He just felt he needed to drop back on the weekend because we weren't getting enough quality to him," Crook said.

"He had two opportunities at goal in a poor performance from the team.

"If he can do that in a poor performance then I think that's a good sign. If we perform well, you'll see more chances from him."

Sydney FC are 23/20 to beat Newcastle, who are 12/5. A 1-0 Sydney FC win is priced at 7/1.

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