Sydney FC’s #QuestToBeTheBest kicks off on Wednesday night at Sydney Football Stadium, and defender Michael Zullo is under no illusions that the Sky Blues can take out Asia’s top prize.
The fullback, embarking on his first ever AFC Champions League campaign, believes himself and the entire squad are prepared for their Group H opener, taking each game as it comes in their stride.
“I think we’re head and shoulders above the rest in Australia and it’s a fantastic opportunity for us to represent our country in Asia, do our club and our country proud,” Zullo said.
“Individually it’s just to keep the form going, play a part in a winning side, that’s the most important thing for me.
“The goal is to win the Champions League, that’s 100% the clear goal and what we are striving to do.
“I feel really good. I think all the hard work we’ve done in preseason and throughout the season leading up to this point has prepared us well,” he continued.
“I think all the boys are in great shape and ready to perform. It’s been building all season to tomorrow night. We’re really excited to kick it off.
“Asian football is very high quality and they’ve done well in their competition last season to qualify so we’re expecting a tough match but we’re up for the challenge.
“You just have to be prepared for everything. We’ve done our analysis but they’re new players and teams we don’t play against every week, so this is just very exciting.”
Zullo believes playing at home, in the Australian summer, will play in the Sky Blues’ favour on Wednesday night, as the Sky Blue star said the short turn around with mid-week games wouldn’t be an issue for the squad.
“I think it’s difficult to go from a cold temperature to a hot temperature, that’s something that’s going to be hard for them and something that we’re going to be looking to use to our advantage,” Zullo said.
“We’ve done some analysis and looked into Suwon’s players, they’ve got their way of playing that they’ll try and work on and we’re more concerned more about our game than them and doing the things we do well that have been so good for us in the A-League.
“There’s little tweaks to our game every single week depending on who we play against and tomorrow night is no different.
“Of course there’s little things we’ll do to get the edge against them but we’ll keep them a secret for now.
“You just need to spend time with all the staff here, the strength and conditioning and massage staff and physios,” he said of the short turn around between matches.
“They’re the people that help get your recovered from the weekend’s game and then once you’ve recovered get you back up and primed for the next game. Physio treatment, massage, ice bath and all the stuff we know works and help.”
Sydney FC kick off their AFC Champions League campaign against Suwon Bluewings on Wednesday night at Sydney Football Stadium (kick off 7:30pm AEDT). Be there to back your Sky Blues on their #QuestToBetheBest