Despotovic to fill Del Piero void

Sunday, 1 December 2013 10:12 AM

Substitute striker Ranko Despotovic – the man who cannot stop scoring – is set to start his first match for Sydney FC as replacement for marquee man Alessandro Del Piero.

Del Piero is in doubt for next weekend’s trip to Gosford to meet defending champions Central Coast after suffering a ‘tingling sensation’ in his left leg and leaving the field midway through the Sky Blues’ 2-0 win over Newcastle on Saturday night.

It could mean an elevation to the starting XI for Despotovic, who came off the bench for Del Piero and scored his second goal in as many weeks.

Asked if the Serb was a chance to be there from the kick-off next game, Sydney coach Frank Farina replied: “Yeah, definitely.

“We always planned to give him more time this week and it just happened he got a bit more than we were going to give him when Alessandro came off.

“He’s good and he’s in good condition in terms of shape. He may even start next week but we’ll see what happens.”

Most pleasing for Farina was the fact the wheels did not fall off once the influential Del Piero left the field.

Sydney continued to try and play football and finished by far the stringer side to make it four wins on the bounce.

Their fans are now daring to dream big after seeing their side move into second spot, but Farina is not getting carried away.

“I’ve always maintained that if you can string two, three, four wins in a row you’re going to rocket up the ladder,” Farina said.

“It’s nice to get four in a row but we’re only eight rounds in and we’ve got to keep going.

“We know within the dressing room and football department what we want to achieve and we know what we have to do to achieve that.

“But there’s absolutely no talk about anything else except what’s coming next.

“It’s nice to be winning though. Winning always breeds confidence.”Football Federation Australia

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