Western Suburbs went from zero to 100 in a hurry in the FFA Cup fourth round.
Suburbs were not supposed to be so good this early in the competition after a raft of roadblocks were put in their way this off season, but they totally dismantled Westgate 6-0 at Castley Reserve on Saturday.
Even Suburbs coach Terry Antoniadis could not have envisaged such a commanding performance against a state league 1 rival.
“We were hoping to win the game and progress in the competition, which we were able to do, but the overall performance and the result was quite unexpected in regards to the scoreline,” he said.
“Generally there’s still a bit of rust going into the FFA Cup, but we seemed to perform quite well.”
What made the Western Suburbs performance all the more impressive was their sub-standard preparation.
Suburbs have been temporarily kicked off their home ground at Ralph Reserve due to re-surfacing works taking place.
Antoniadis and his players have not had the facilities they require to fully prepare for the season.
“We’ve been training at a venue where there’s no goals, no line markings or anything, so we haven’t been able to do a whole lot of tactical work,” Antoniadis said.
“We’ve done a little bit in the last week, so for the boys to take on all that and put it into practice in the game was really pleasing.”
The short term pain for Western Suburbs will be for the long term benefit of the players.
They could be back training at Ralph Reserve as soon as this week and their pitch will be first class.
“We’re all itching to get back there,” Antoniadis said.
“It’s the little things that you can take for granted.
“It’s our home pitch, our home ground, the familiar surroundings will be good once we get there.”
There were no weak links for Western Suburbs in the six-goal drubbing.
Striker Deng Aguek was stellar on the front line with a hat-trick in a game when four individuals hit the back of the net.
“He continued on his impressive pre-season form,” Antoniadis said.
“It was just one of those days where just about every opportunity we created, we capitalised.
“Other days you’re creating chances and it never goes in.
“But we were quite clinical and that was probably the biggest factor.”
Chol Mia shone like a beacon for his work rate across the midfield, while James Hammond was the chief organiser and communicator of an impenetrable defence.
“We got contributions right across the board,” Antoniadis said.
“All 14 players who played a part during the game did their job.”
Western Suburbs’ opening round clash with Essendon Royals in state league 1 is supposed to be this Saturday, but it has been postponed to April 15 due to the unavailability of the Royals home ground, Ormond Park.
“It’s a massive shame because we feel like we’ve got a bit of momentum on the back of the win over Westgate,” Antoniadis said.