Mike Mulvey says there will be no favourite when his Brisbane Roar side meet Adelaide United in their A-League elimination final on Sunday.
Comments coming out of the Adelaide camp earlier in the week suggested the team which finished one place above Brisbane in the ladder were happy to claim the underdogs tag for this sudden-death fixture, due to the Roar’s superior recent form and big-game experience.
Brisbane’s preparation has been near-perfect, admitted Mulvey, but there would be no room for complacency against the Reds.
“This is finals football,” he said.
“All I know is, and all I care about is, that our preparation is good.
“The opposition will turn up on the day, we’ll turn up on the day, and it’s 11 v 11 and see what happens from there.
“What you’ve got to concentrate on is your own preparation. If you do that well, then you’re half a chance.”
Adelaide United are too good a side for the Roar to claim to be favourites, according to the Brisbane coach.
“They’ve got some very, very good players,” Mulvey said.
“I’m not into underdogs or overdogs, whichever way you want to look at it.
“The situation is it’s a game of football, it’s finals football.”
The Roar will likely name an unchanged line-up for the clash at Hindmarsh Stadium, meaning five of the XI are players who did not start in last year’s A-League Grand Final win.
This blend of experienced veterans and hungry youngsters is resulting in a highly-focused Roar team, Mulvey said.
“If you look at the people we’ve brought in, Jade North for example, he’s actually won an A-League title before as well, so he brings that added experience from a different dimension,” he said.
“Then there’s some young lads like Jack Hingert, James Donachie, Luke Brattan, Steven Lustica. These are young boys who are very, very hungry.
“But the important factor is you’ve got to appreciate what it’s like to have won something as well, and I think that’s what we’ve got in this group, they appreciate that.”