Adelaide’s statement win clouded by mixed feelings

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The A-League’s age old rivalry between Adelaide United and Melbourne Victory brought the City of Churches to life on Friday night.

In a city known for being mild-mannered and tame, the Coopers Stadium crowd was growing and starting to find its voice.

Gone is the polite applause; in its place stands a more raucous growl, collective amongst the 12,000 in attendance, which greets every switch of play, tackle and save, energising players and intoxicating fans.

Friday night wasn’t like most others given Victory were in town. Unlike some other ‘rivalries’ mentioned in the A-League, this is an actual rivalry, with a loyal following and travelling support. It creates one hell of an atmosphere.

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“It is fantastic, to play in front of our fantastic fans, the whole stadium was packed more red than blue, also I like when the supporters of the opponents also have a lot of support in the away [end], it’s not normal and it was a good atmosphere,” said Adelaide boss Marco Kurz.

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“When you score the winner at the end of the game it is fantastic, and a wake-up for the crowd. They support us always as good as they can.

Friday evening was the most passionate Adelaide and Coopers Stadium has been all season. Set against the backdrop of a developing city skyline, there is a sense that Coopers, the Red Army and United are all growing together.

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Which is why it is odd to know that it will be over soon when Kurz departs. There is the possibility of a home final in the first week of finals dependent on Adelaide’s results but that isn’t certain, at least not yet.

Just as this team and the fans start to gain an appreciation for the other and Adelaide starts to explore the potential and of its squad, it will be rebuilt, tweaked or even demolished during the post-season as a new regime is instilled.

“I am not important, for me it’s important that we get a result for our fantastic supporters, for the city, and the home final. It can be a fantastic night again but there’s a way to go,” Kurz said.

“It’s not done.”

 

Feature image: Phil Radoslovich

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Adam Daunt
A student at University of South Australia who hopes his writing disguises his lack of sporting prowess and a fan who masquerades his choice in mediocre teams as being hipster