Holland tips big goal-haul for Spanish striker Guardiola

Spanish striker Sergi Guardiola's early-season efforts in difficult circumstances prove that he has the potential to be a 15-goal man for Adelaide United this campaign, according to teammate James Holland.

Sergi Guardiola

Adelaide United's Sergi Guardiola, left, contests the ball with Perth Glory's Josh Risdon Source: Getty Images

The A-League Premiers' Plate and championship-defending Reds have not won a game in the opening seven rounds and are at the bottom of the table with just two points.

They were missing several players from the start through injury and several others have been injured in the early rounds, plus they are still getting over the loss of a quartet of star players, who left for other clubs after last season.

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But new signing Guardiola, despite having to try to fit into this scenario and with his limited English, has scored three of the total seven goals Adelaide have come up with so far.

Holland, capped 15-times for the Socceroos and has spent seven years playing in Europe before returning to the A-League this season, told The World Game that Guardiola had the potential for a big year on the goal-scoring front.

"Oh, 100 per cent. I think, from what I've seen in training and the games, there's a lot of potential there," Holland said.

"He's a fantastic footballer and he's really intelligent and makes good runs and he's strong on the ball. He can hold it up, he can dribble, he's got all the attributes.

"Obviously we've got to provide him with the service and I think we will. I think we're starting to do that better, particularly with Marcelo Carrusca back from injury, and that we'll keep going in the right direction with it."



Asked if Guardiola was the player who could reach a double-figure goal tally and maybe stretch it out to 15, Holland replied: "I believe so. Having to go through the transitional period of coming to a new club and adjusting to a team that's also gelling with other new players, that's a big challenge.

"Take all those things into account and he's already got three goals, so it's looking really good for him. Reaching double figures and more from there, I wouldn't put it past him at all.

"I think it's going to happen. It's only a matter of time."

While Guardiola didn't score in Adelaide's first three games, he found the back of the net in the ensuing three matches, including one from the penalty spot. 


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3 min read
Published 17 November 2016 at 9:19am
By Greg Prichard