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Feb 11, 2012

Jets need more A-League consistency: coach

Full of confidence after three consecutive wins, Newcastle Jets A-League coach Gary van Egmond is enjoying his side's mid-season resurgence but believes greater consistency is the key if the team is to continue to improve.

"Picking up points on the road was a real confidence booster for us," van Egmond said.

"I think one thing we're starting to get is consistency. We want to get better, and there are plenty of things we can still work on."

After netting eight goals in just two matches, the Jets have hit a purple patch of attacking form, but it is their steely defence that has equally impressed their coach.

"Defence and attack go hand in hand. For us to have a clean sheet is always fantastic, but to be scoring that amount of goals is a positive.

"It is about performance, and it is about us trying to better that performance every week."

One player who is relishing the pure enjoyment of playing football is striker Michael Bridges.

The Englishman has been putting in the hard yards at training to make a success of his comeback, and a well-taken goal against Melbourne Heart - his first since coming out of retirement last November - was a just reward for the fan favourite.

"It's been damn hard work to get where I am at the moment, and it's even harder to stay there when you get there," said Bridges.

"I'm loving it at the moment, and it is credit to everyone at this football club for giving me the chance again."

The striker believes solid performances away from home in recent weeks have been the inspiration for their dominant victory over Melbourne Heart on Saturday.

"Going away and having the games away from home, and performing well in them was a bit of a relief," he said.

"We've been under the pump at home, and to come back and perform well here is obviously fantastic for the fans."

The Jets will be looking for a solid week at training as they search for the consistency that van Egmond is challenging his side to achieve.

Their next match is a tough road trip to Perth where they take on a Glory side desperate to bounce back from Saturday's 2-1 loss to Sydney FC.

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