Perth Glory's backline has taken another blow as coach Tony Popovic admits his side needs to improve before the season slips away.
Defender Osama Malik has been ruled out of Perth Glory's A-League fixture against Newcastle Jets on Saturday because of a hamstring injury.
Malik reported hamstring tightness in Perth's shock home loss to Central Coast Mariners last weekend.
Glory coach Popovic says Malik will be sidelined for up to three weeks but is relieved the injury isn't more serious.
The experienced Malik will miss Perth's away trip to Newcastle which Popovic rates as a danger game despite the Jets' winless status.
"There will be a lot of desperation involved with their team," Popovic tsaid today.
"I think we will get a very aggressive start from Newcastle ... we are expecting a real tough encounter which you always get in Newcastle.
"They're a team that always look dangerous. Unfortunately they haven't got the results they want so far but a very dangerous team going forward.
"We have to be aware of that but also know that we can cause problems to any team and we have got to put the package together in defence and attack."
Perth's complete package was missing in a rare home loss to Central Coast last week - the Mariners won 2-1 to bank their first win of the season.
"We have just got to improve," Popovic said. "It's our first poor first half of football, we have been very good in every (other) first half.
"In the end we were a goal down (at half-time) and we reacted very well but unfortunately it wasn't enough.
"We have just got to try and complete the game and get that 90 minutes in terms of a performance that will give us a better chance of getting a result when things aren't quite going for you on the day."