Rudan fires shot at flailing Wanderers after derby loss

Marko Rudan doubts if Socceroos forward Brandon Borrello will play again this A-League Men season after putting his Wanderers squad on notice following a Sydney derby defeat.

Sydney FC claimed a 2-1 win on Saturday to leave the sixth-placed Wanderers facing a potential do-or-die meeting with Melbourne City next week which will go a long way to deciding if Rudan’s squad will play finals.

And Rudan faces the prospect of tackling City without Borrello (hamstring) and centre back Tom Beadling (quad), both of whom failed to finish the derby and are at long odds to return this season.

“I think his season is done, he won’t come off the park unless it’s pretty bad,” Rudan said of Borrello.

“Beadling is another one, so that’s two soft-tissue injuries.

“That’s been the story of our season, we’ve had a real chequered season and it’s hard. It’s our job to put a new team together every week.”

Rudan was visibly frustrated by his side’s failure to close out a draw after the Wanderers’ 96th minute equaliser was cancelled out by Jaiden Kurcharski less than 90 seconds later to give Sydney the win. 

The Wanderers boss singled out 18-year-old winger Marcus Younis for criticism over his defensive positioning in the lead-up to Kurcharski’s goal.

“Marcus Younis knows he has to pick up at the far post when we're in the back third, you’ve got to stay with your man,” Rudan said.

“It’s learning for us. It was the same situation against Western United - they overloaded and they got a lot of width, he had this track back.

“He knows, it’s a learning curve. These players have to understand what their roles and responsibilities are.”

Rudan also revealed he substituted experienced leftback Jack Clisby at halftime because he was failing to deal with the threat of Joe Lolley.

“He just wasn’t good enough, he knows that, I told him that. We worked all week on defending Lolley,” Rudan said. 

Saturday’s pivotal clash with seventh-placed City could lead to the sides swapping places in the top six.

The match shapes as Milos Ninkovic’s last home game for the Wanderers after signalling he will retire at the end of this season.

But Rudan is refusing to draw on that emotion to get the Wanderers over the line.

“It’s not about Milos, he’ll say the same thing,” Rudan said.

“There is no room for sentiment, I want to talk about the game and not individuals.”

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