Football 2 years ago

Arnold hoses down A-League record

  • Arnold hoses down A-League record

Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold says last season's unbeaten record away from home counts for nothing when they go on the road for the first time on Saturday.

If the Sky Blues leave Newcastle with at least one point, they will become the first A-League side to avoid defeat in 16 straight regular season away games.

And while Arnold praised their record-breaking season last year, he hosed down the excitement of their latest opportunity to create history.

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"We created history last year at this club with scoring the most goals ever and most points ever for Sydney FC," he said on Friday.

"(But) it's a new season. Last season means nothing anymore for anybody.

"It's all about moving forward this year and trying to replicate what we did last year away from home."

Sydney will drive up to the Hunter on Friday with almost an entire squad at Arnold's disposal, however marquee Filip Holosko is doubtful of playing after aggravating a hamstring in last week's draw with Melbourne City.

An MRI scan earlier in the week cleared the Slovakian international, who was Sydney's lone goalscorer last week, of any serious injury but he has been limited to light training duties for the entire week.

Arnold said he would be a game-time decision.

"Filip is a 50-50 chance at the moment," Arnold said.

"As to whether I risk him this week and potentially push him out on the field and if it doesn't go well, he could be missing for six weeks.

"It's one of those situations with a hamstring that sometimes is better to be safe than sorry."

The loss of Holosko would be a huge blow for an attacking combination that Arnold said found form in the second half against Melbourne City.

His likely omission could open the door for vice-captain Shane Smeltz or the returning Christopher Naumoff to slot into the side.

Arnold said their attacking third needed to improve on converting the numerous chances their midfield created last week.

"We got into their penalty box, I think the stats were 33 times in the 90 minutes, and we didn't take advantage of that," he said.

"So we've had a good look at the runs from the strikers in the box, and the delivery off the crosses."

Newcastle will be without skipper Nigel Boogaard, who is suspended for one match after receiving two yellow cards last week.

New signing Themba Muata-Marlow is expected to take his place.

STATS THAT MATTER

* Newcastle are winless in their past seven matches against Sydney FC.

* Sydney have kept a clean sheet in three of their past five away games.

* Newcastle haven't won at home and Sydney haven't lost away from home in 2015.

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