Perth Glory boss Kenny Lowe has shrugged off the pressure of being league leaders and insisted: “I’m not bothered. We’ll just go out and do what we do. We’ll end up where we end up…”
Glory have stunned the A-League by coming off a disappointing 2013/14 season to lead this season from the very first round, smashing the double title holders Brisbane Roar and Asian Champions Western Sydney Wanderers along the way.
The only hiccup came when they played Adelaide United and went down 2-0 at Hindmarsh for their only loss of the season, and the only game where they have failed to score.
They have also fought their way to the FFA Cup final later this month where they will again face Adelaide United for a chance at revenge – and their first bit of silverware since the A-League began.
But the side has yet to be tested against the A-League’s two other big guns this season, Melbourne Victory and Sydney FC – and some have predicted the wheels may fall off the Glory bandwagon when they do.
Glory face Sydney tonight at Allianz Stadium – but laid-back Lowe was undaunted by the challenge ahead…and was happy to fly under the radar, overshadowed by the focus on their big city east coast rivals.
“They are massive clubs, They’ve got huge resources and big players and spend a hell of a lot of money,” said Lowe. “We’re just little Perth. We just get on with our job.
“We’re not so much the underdog – we just go about our business. If we go north or we go south, it doesn’t matter. We’ve got a way about doing things.”
Sydney's unbeaten record so far this season risks being dented by key injuries but Lowe was under no illusion about thr task ahead tonight.
"They've got that much money and that many big players, it wouldn't matter if they put the youth side out, they'd still be a decent team," he said. "They're highly organised, they've got a very charismatic guy at the head running the show, so it's going to be really difficult for us.
"They're probably one of the best in the league obviously. You've got the best centre forward, the best mdifield player, the best centre halves, one of the best keepers – they're good side."
Glory's impressive record in front of goal so far this season has been helped hugely by the recruitment of Irish hitman Andy Keogh and the mid-season signing of Nebo Marinkovic.
But Lowe said they were just one part of an overhaul of the way the club was being run on the pitch, saying "everything" had changed since last season.
"The way we go about our business, the characters we've brought into the team," he said. "I don't think it is one thing. I think it is a culmination of things.
"The players have been fantastic. They've bought into everything that we are trying to implement and they've brought some of their own stuff in there too which is fantastic as well.
"Everyone is feeding off everyone. The coaches are hungry, we've got a new sports science guy, he's hungry, the players look like they're hungry, so everybody in the team is together and really focused on just trying to have a good year."
Despite the apparent indifference, Lowe still believes his side has yet to show their full potential.
“There’s a hell of a lot of improvement left,” he said. “You always want to be the best you can be and the best you can be is number one.
“Whether we finish that way… we have aspirations for that, that’s the reason everyone’s in the league, not to finish in the six but to win it. Whether we can or not, I haven’t got a clue.
“But that’s the focus for everyone. If you haven’t got that focus then you’re in the wrong game.”