5 March 2013 06:16

Western Sydney Wanderers coach Tony Popovic expects his young side to improve even more next season.

The A-League newcomers have had a dream debut season that sees them sitting on top of table with the Premiers’ Plate firmly in their sights.

Saturday’s 1-0 win over the Central Coast Mariners saw them extend their winning streak to a record-equalling eight matches and there’s every chance they will go on and break that record this weekend when they host bottom-placed Wellington Phoenix.

But while the Wanderers have set the benchmark this season, Popovic believes they will be an even stronger side next season.

“I think there’s still a lot more improvement,” Popovic said on Tuesday.

“Certainly we can improve and I believe this group, once they’ve been together a little longer in a full pre-season together, our football should improve next year.”

With just four games to go, Popovic believes his side can remain on top.

“We’re focused – we’re obviously not looking too far ahead, we’re just looking ahead to Wellington and if we can get the result we desire that day, then we move ahead to the next challenge,” Popovic said.

Wellington may be the last-placed team, but Popovic insists that doesn’t lessen the challenge.

“Of course we’re not playing the league leaders this week, but we’re playing a team that’s changed their management and had a fantastic result against Melbourne Heart,” he said.

“We’re at home, we’ll have a great crowd once again supporting us and we’ve got to look forward to it, but we’ve got to make sure that we keep our recent good form going.

“If we play to our capabilities and perform well we’ve got to be confident enough to get the three points.”