Facing the long wait for the MacArthur ground fix

MacArthur coach Ante Milikic said his team could not set a date for the A-League men’s game at home.

Sunday’s season-opener game against Wellington had to be played at the McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle when a pitch inspection on Friday found the surface of Campbelltown Stadium unfit for play.

Campbelltown City Council has blamed low temperatures and high rainfall for many of the patches of freshly laid grass on the beds and increased failure.

There are now fears that the entire pitch may have to be rebuilt, forcing the Bulls to move many home games elsewhere.

Speaking after his team’s 1-1 draw with Phoenix, Milicic said the situation poses an additional challenge to him to ensure that his game group is focused.

“I didn’t know how long it would take, but all I can say is that I was there on Friday and it looked very far away,” Milick said.

“When we get back there, it’s about working for the stadium and the club.

“I’ve obviously got a big job with my staff to focus on the playing team and the performances ahead of us.”

The Bulls will play their next scheduled home game against Central Coast on December 5 to play Sydney FC at the Netstrata Jubilee Stadium on Saturday.

The game is unlikely to be played in Campbelltown, which is the latest blow to MacArthur after a difficult pre-season.

The club lost four games to A-League men’s opponents in the pre-season and retired goalkeeper and captain Adam Federici last month, just days after assistant coach and former captain Mark Milligan left his post.

“Wherever we play, at home or away, regardless of the opposition, we need to make sure we are as well prepared as we can,” Milick said.

“I think we got the situation right (Sunday).”

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