Post Match Reaction: Ruben Zadkovich on Newcastle Defeat

Ruben Zadkovich fronted the media following Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at the hands of Newcastle Jets in Isuzu UTE A-League Round 24 action at Suncorp Stadium.

Despite Roar enjoying 65% of possession and fashioning 23 shots to the Jets eight, second half strikes from Clayton Taylor and Apostolos Stamatelopoulos sealed the points for the visitors as Roar tasted defeat at Suncorp for the first time under Zadkovich.

Saturday’s defeat leaves Roar in eighth, five points outside of the top six with two rounds remaining in regular season.

Zadkovich discussed Saturday’s match, the outlook for the remainder of the season and Keegan Jelacic’s Olyroos Call-up with the media that was present.

ALM R24 MATCH REPORT: Brisbane Roar 0-2 Newcastle Jets

Zadkovich on the match:

“It was pretty clear, how it played out, I thought first half, we played some really nice stuff. It looked exactly like I wanted it to look except for the finishing touch in the box, which is something that we’ve been working on and you know, the execution wasn’t quite there. So a lot of positives from the first half. But obviously second half, we gave a very soft first goal and then a pretty soft second goal if I’m honest, so disappointed with that.

I think in terms of actually controlling the game with the ball in the style of football that we’re playing, I certainly think it’s much more advanced now than where it was earlier. I think at the start of the year, I was watching from the outside obviously wasn’t a part of it. But there was a real intensity to the way the team pressed and defended and I think at times we look a little bit tired.”

Zadkovich on Burke-Gilroy’s more advanced role in Saturday’s match:

“I thought he did really well to be honest with you, a new role for him obviously, you know, we’re without Keegan Jelacic without Marco Rojas. Two very big players for us. It’s kind of like taking Stamatelopoulos and Clayton Taylor out for them, that’d be definitely without. So for us to lose on two of our best attacking plays in the front third is obviously a loss and we look to fill the hole with Burkey and he’s done a really good job before actually scored goals at A-League level playing right wing so I thought he was he was good without being fantastic.”

Zadkovich on his side becoming more clinical in front of goal:

It’s pretty obvious I’ve been here now for however many weeks. Now every time we score first we’ve won. It’s pretty clear the way we play. It’s pretty clear the intent to control the game with the ball and their game plan to be honest, goes out the window the moment we score and take one of those chances which we needed to in the first half. When you don’t take them chances obviously goals change games and then you know they get a moment, a pretty soft goal. Didn’t really do much to get it to be honest, they played a long ball into our box, Kai Trewin header fell to Clayton Taylor, he took probably 10 to 13 touches came back inside and shot unopposed. So, it’s a very weak goal for us to give away and now the situation becomes a lot more difficult, they get more numbers behind the ball, they defend their box even more, and it makes it even harder to break down. So I think for us, it’s being a little bit more clever in those moments when they have stacked their box. But at the end of the day, it comes down to execution and quality in the front third and in both boxes we weren’t good enough.

Zadkovich on the outlook for the remainder of the season:

“I don’t think it’s too settled. If I’m honest, we’ve had to go without Marco and without Keegan and had to make some changes there and bring Taras (Gomulka) in, in the last two weeks. So there may be changes, there may be other people that get opportunity. But for now, we have to stay very focused on the positives out of the game. Let’s call it for what it is, we’ve had 65% of the ball, probably more, probably double the amount of passes, double the amount of final third entries, 12 corners to two. I mean in every key marker, our model looks pretty good at the moment. We need some quality to turn that that model and that possession  and that dominance into results.”

On Keegan Jelacic’s Olyroos call-up:

I’ve said it before I’ll say it again, I think Keegan Jelacic is one of the best prospects and talents in Australian football. His work ethic, his meters per minute, his high speed meters, everything about the kid. He’s very good, very technical player. So yes, it’s a massive loss for us. But I must stress as a club, we’re very supportive of our young ones international teams and we  were very happy for him that he got called up. I personally thought he probably should have been there from the start but for him to get that opportunity that’s Tony Vidmar’s call and I’m glad that he’s in that squad and I hope he goes and represents  him, his family and certainly our club well and I’m sure he will.”

Isuzu UTE A-League Men 2023/24 – Round 24: Brisbane Roar v Newcastle Jets
Suncorp Stadium, Milton
Saturday, 13 April

Brisbane Roar – 0
Newcastle Jets – 2 (Clayton TAYLOR 53’, Apostolos STAMATELOPOULOS 63’)