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Fitness the key to Sydney FC form: Arnold

AAP logoAAP 11/11/2016 Matt Encarnacion

Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold believes his undefeated A-League ladder leaders are playing nowhere near their true potential.

Arnold is adamant only a superior fitness base has his team on the cusp of six-straight wins to kick-off their campaign, and predicts there are higher gears to come.

"Our fitness levels when I watch all the games across the A-League, I think we're the fittest team in the country," Arnold said on Friday.

"We can run teams off their legs, we've done that the first five weeks.

"Once we get fitter, I think we'll evolve as a football team in possession because it takes time for players to gel together."

"That will take time, we'll evolve as the season goes. Overall I think we're playing at about sixty per cent of where we'll end up. It's exciting to see where we will end up."

Arnold's comments will reverberate around a league that has watched a healthy roster last week beat rivals Melbourne Victory 2-1.

However the two-time A-League championship-winning coach has no concerns about what the rest of the competition think about his team.

"I don't think about the other teams. I just think about ourselves," he said.

"I asked (the players) the question after the game, 'is there anyone here performing at the best of their ability individually?' And not one hand went up.

"So they know that there's a lot of improvement individually to go, which obviously then as a team, we'll get better."

Arnold is again expected to stick with the same line-up that defeated Victory.

However he could opt to start match-winner David Carney over captain Alex Brosque in the midfield.

Another victory would bring Sydney FC a step closer to a club-record 10 wins in succession, set when they made the final of the inaugural 2005-06 season.

But Arnold is certain their early-season form hasn't placed undue pressure on his outfit.

"I keep driving to the players, it means nothing. There's still 22 rounds to go," he said.

"The main thing is that we train hard every day, we get better at every training sessions, and our performance gets better in matches.

"Overall I wasn't that happy with last week's performance. I thought the victory, the character, the mentality was great, (but) our fitness got us over the line, not our football."

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