The Sky Blues required the assistance of the Australian Institute of Sport to field a team against Adelaide United on Saturday evening, as seven uncontracted teenagers took to the field in the 4-2 loss.
?Unfortunately don?t have enough players to be able to put together a team to play matches twice a week at present,? Sydney FC Coach Ian Crook said. ?We still have players in the final stages of rehabilitation from off season surgery and we also have a few niggly injuries.
?We?ve also got three boys away with the Australian U20s and it?s not right to be pushing the fit players in the squad to play twice a week at this stage of the pre season. That?s fine if you have 22 players to rotate but we?re not in a position to do that.
?It is unfortunate that we won?t be able to play APIA Leichhardt but we need to ensure we are ready to go when the competition starts on 6 October, which is only five weeks away. That is our primary focus and we?re on target for that.?
Sydney FC Chief Executive Officer Tony Pignata also apologised to APIA Leichhardt for the cancellation: ?We?re sorry to have to cancel the game but we?re not in a position to be able to play and unfortunately we can?t jeopardise the fitness of the players at this delicate stage of pre season.
?APIA Leichhardt has been very good about it and we will work with them to make sure their fans and junior players receive something special from Sydney FC.?
Sydney FC fans in the inner west will be able to watch the Sky Blues take on Newcastle Jets at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday (9 September). Kick off for the game is 2.00pm.
-Sydney FC press release