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'No ceiling to what they can do' says Papas after Jets grab first win

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10th December, 2021
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Arthur Papas won’t revel in the glory of his first win as Newcastle coach and says there is no ceiling to what the Jets can achieve this season.

The Jets brushed Wellington aside in a 4-0 demolition at McDonald Jones Stadium on Friday.

Usually disciplined and workmanlike, the Phoenix were unable to stop the Jets’ march towards victory as Dylan Murnane, Daniel Penha and a Beka Mikeltadze double got Newcastle home.

Valentino Yuel and Olivier Boumal both failed to find the target but the wide duo were vital in Newcastle’s win with their movement and quick interplay.

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“It’s still one game,” said Papas. “Tomorrow’s a new day and we start again.

“Knowing football, tonight’s finished and I want them to understand there is no ceiling to what they can do.

“It’s good to see it come off in the match. I see it daily in training and some of those goals were excellent.

“They were brave and to play that type of football you have to have something in your DNA and your person to want to play because, for me, the satisfying thing is we have been 1-0 in front and we haven’t run on with it.

“The message at halftime was that we didn’t want to settle for 1-0 and I believed we had more in us.”

Arthur Papas

Can Arthur Papas take the Newcastle Jets back to the top of the A-League table? (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Mikeltadze’s double saw him move level with Yuel on the goal-scoring charts, having notched a penalty in the draw against Western Sydney earlier in the season.

The passionate Georgian forward grabbed a goal either side of halftime but also led the line brilliantly.

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And Papas, whose side face the table-topping Macarthur FC next Sunday, said the 24-year-old would continue to improve.

“I’m proud of Beka and his mentality to overcome some pretty difficult weeks,” he said.

“He’s been playing well every week and he got his goals tonight, but he does more than just score goals.

“Defensively he sets up how we want to press and plays well in tight areas, and hopefully the goals will give him confidence as to how good he can be in this league.

“He understands space extremely well and he can give you a threat behind.

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“We want someone moving into space, there were times he combined well. He can get better and they are hungry for more.”

© AAP

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