Sydney’s star midfielder Adrian Mierzejewski made his case for inclusion in the team’s Asian Champions League squad with a sublime  performance against Perth last night – which may mean Milos Ninkovic misses out.

The Polish international has been Sydney’s best player this season and head coach Graham Arnold believes that he still has an extra gear to come.

“From what I saw on footage, video and research on Adrian he’s still got so much more,” said Arnold.

“He even tells me ‘I’ve got so much more to give’ and I do believe that from what I have seen.

“He’s still trying to get used to the physicality of the league, he’s still trying to get used to the pace of the league.”

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That’s a daunting prospect for opposition defenders who haven’t been able to slow down the Polish international yet. Mierzejewski has seven goals in the last eight games and is dismantling teams with his passing and movement.

It also puts Arnold in an interesting conundrum as Sydney need to whittle down their squad to just three non-confederation visa players ahead of the Asian Champions League next year.

That means the Sky Blues will have to leave out either Mierzejewski, in form striker Bobo, defensive stalwart Jordy Buijs or marquee Milos Ninkovic

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Ninkovic and Mierzejewski are arguably two of the best players the club has ever employed but the shallowness of the Sydney front and back line mean that replacing Bobo or Buijs leaves Sydney in a worse spot than losing one of their play-making superstars.

On current form Mierzejewski seems the clear choice.

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Arnold for his part has yet to indicate what his final decision is going to be and heaped praise on Ninkovic for his role in Sydney’s 6-0 demolition of Perth on Saturday night.

“I thought Ninkovic tonight was outstanding as well,” offered Arnold. “When those two together start linking up together with the front line we’ve got it’s pretty frightening.”

What’s frightening is which ever decision Arnold makes will leave him with a hungry and rested play-making superstar at his disposal for domestic competitions which will help the Sky Blues overcome the usual fatigue teams face when playing in Asia. 

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Football fan, writer, and post-grad journalism student at the University of Technology Sydney. Joined the team in 2017 to cover Sydney FC and the Central Coast Mariners.