AAP Soccer

Mombaerts’ City impact impresses Bouzanis

By AAP Newswire

Melbourne City goalkeeper Dean Bouzanis has praised the impact of Erick Mombaerts as they set the pace in the A-League.

City have won four games in a row, after they started their campaign with a derby draw, to be the only unbeaten team in Mombaert's maiden campaign as an A-League coach.

Bouzanis, who spent last season on loan at Dutch Eredivisie side PEC Zwolle before his return to City, said the change under the Frenchman had been stark.

"I've noticed a manager that's come in and the respect for him is very, very high," he said.

"He's a very good man and tactically his football knowledge is second-to-none.

"I can't speak highly enough of Erick."

Mombaerts has a lengthy and impressive resume which includes spells in charge of Paris Saint-Germain and France's U-18 and U-21 teams, before a more recent three-year stint at the helm of Yokohama F. Marinos - succeeded at the Japanese club by former Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglou.

Bouzanis said the 64-year-old has boosted the club in numerous aspects of the game.

"There's a real sense of unity in the changing room... we fight and we'll fight for each other," he said.

"And the gaffer, he's done that, he's brought that in because he knows his football, he knows his structure, he knows what he wants and he's a good person and he demands respect from everybody at the football club."

City have scored freely under Mombaerts but managed just one clean sheet - 0-0 against Melbourne Victory in round one - and Bouzanis said they need to tighten up in defence, starting against Brisbane on Sunday at Dolphin Stadium.

"People say that they haven't scored many goals but the thing for me is that they're creating chances...," Bouzanis said of the Roar, who have only scored once in four games.

City conceded late goals against both Wellington and Central Coast and Bouzanis emphasised the need to maintain concentration.

"At the end of the day, clean sheets win you games and they can win you leagues," he said.

"Yes, we have been scoring goals but we don't want to be one of those teams that has to score three because we concede two or has to score two every week and concede one.

"I think the lads have been working hard to nullify that but hopefully with the hard work comes clean sheets."