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Reds making history in ACL quarter finals

 Adelaide United

Adelaide United will make history tonight when they take on Japan’s most successful J-League side Kashima Antlers in the first leg of the AFC Champions League quarter finals.

Based in a port city on the Pacific Ocean in Ibaraki, Japan, Kashima Antlers have won the J-League a record five times including last season and currently sit in second place in the Japanese national competition with ten matches remaining.

Kashima have won a total of ten domestic trophies however, aside from the A3 Champions Cup title in 2003, that success has not yet been matched at the Continental level.

It’s all new for Adelaide United, being the first A-League side to make it to this stage of the AFC Champions League.

The Reds faced Melbourne Victory in Melbourne in the A-League last Friday and travel to Japan for this mid-week fixture and, while it is a demanding schedule, Adelaide Coach Aurelio Vidmar is confident his players will rise to the occasion.

“I’ve got a lot of faith in this team,” Vidmar said.

“There are a lot of players who love playing with their backs against the wall and this is the perfect set up for them, they thrive on it.”

Kashima scored 28 goals in its six Champions League group stage matches and are likely to be on the attack against United right from kick off. However Vidmar says his team is not planning to sit back for 90 minutes.

“It’s over two legs but it doesn’t mean we’re going to sit back and defend,” Vidmar said.

Kashima Antlers (Japan) vs Adelaide United (Australia)
Wednesday, September 17 2008, Kick-Off 7.30pm (ACST)
Kashima City Stadium, Japan
Referee: Lee Gi Young (Korea Republic)

Adelaide United FC Squad: 4. Angelo Costanzo, 5. Michael Valkanis, 6. Cassio, 7. Lucas Pantelis, 8. Kristian Sarkies, 9. Paul Agostino, 10. Cristiano, 13. Travis Dodd, 14. Scott Jamieson, 16. Daniel Mullen, 18. Robert Cornthwaite, 19. Sasa Ognenovski, 20. Mark Birighitti (Gk), 21. Jason Spagnuolo, 22. Diego, 24. Paul Reid, 25. Robert Younis, 26. Fabian Barbiero, 30. Eugene Galekovic (Gk)

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Real Football

Published on September 17, 2008

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