Adelaide United coach John Kosmina believes his side's trip to Tashkent earlier in the year will prepare it for Wednesday’s AFC Champions League return quarter-final leg against Bunyodkor.
With the aggregate score at 2-2 after last week’s first-leg at Hindmarsh Stadium, the Reds venture to the Uzbekistan capital with a strong grasp of what to expect at Jar Stadium.
"I think it helps," Kosmina said on whether his side’s previous experience would give it any added benefit.
"The majority of the squad that will be travelling this time around will have been there before."
Kosmina also declared that any lingering disappointment from the first-leg, which saw the Reds have Bunyodkor on the ropes before settling for a draw, was now out of the players' systems.
Instead, the squad is jumping out of its skin to prove its first 30 minutes, when it totally outplayed Bunyodkor, was no flash in the pan and that a place in the semi-finals in very much achievable.
"I said to the players in the dressing room after the first-leg: 'Don't drop your heads about this, these things happen.' It was our first competitive match and we probably went too well in the first 30 minutes.
"It was like we’d gone straight from the training paddock into the game and it almost became fun … and when the axe fell we weren’t quite ready to deal with it," Kosmina said.
United will take a squad of 17 players to Tashkent, with the biggest question mark over who comes in to partner Iain Fyfe in the centre of defence in place of the suspended Nigel Boogaard.
Kosmina is tossing up between Jon McKain, who missed the first-leg because of a knee injury, and Antony Golec.
The Reds will depart for Uzbekistan on Sunday morning as it continues to fly the flag for Australia and aim to reach the ACL semi-finals for the second time.
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