February 18th, 2014
Melbourne Victory will be taking on Muangthong United in the Asian Champions League playoff at Geelong. Ahead of the match, Melbourne Victory have received a warning from Brisbane Roar Mike Mulvey, who has said that the Australian club needs to expect the worst from the Thai champions. Brisbane Roar have already faced a Thai outfit last season and they came out second best in all areas of the pitch. Even though Melbourne Victory will be heading into this contest as the clear favourites to win it, Mike Mulvey says that the contest is not as straightforward as people think.
Brisbane Roar were beaten by Buriram United in the qualifying stage last season. Buriram United went on to reach the quarter-finals of the competition. Mulvey has said that if Melbourne Victory are not at their best in this match, then there is a good chance that they could be overrun by the underdogs. The Australian outfit Melbourne Victory will be heading into the competition on the back of a poor run of form, which only recently came to an end following a 3-1 win over Central Coast. Prior to that, they lost two matches in successive 5-0 scores.
As a result, the club finds itself fourth in the table with just 27 points on board.
“You cannot underestimate these guys. These Thai clubs are usually backed by businesses or very wealthy individuals, and they can throw as much money as they need to at it. We got smashed for the fact that we lost to a ‘no-name’ team, but that was very disrespectful towards Thai football. They played very good football against us, Buriram. What people didn’t really appreciate was the quality of the opponent,” said Mulvey.
“One thing that will be fascinating to watch is whether Muangthong is going to play counter-attacking football or whether they’re going to come and pressure.
January 28th, 2014
Is there any chance, whatsoever, of the Socceroos progressing to the second round of the World Cup in Brazil next June?
On paper, even the most ardent Aussie soccer nationalist would probably have to say no. In a group featuring both the 2010 World Cup finalists and a South American team that many expert pundits see as something of a dark horse for the whole tournament in the shape of Chile – we would seem to have virtually zero chance of progressing. Read the rest of this entry »
January 7th, 2014
Fortunes change very quickly in football and Melbourne Victory FC is a prime example of it. Before Christmas, they were in a decent position in the A-League with 12 points in 8 games, but, in the last couple of weeks, their performance has come down considerably. They have managed to secure just 7 points from their last 5 games and 6 of those points have come against comparatively weaker teams like Perth Glory and Melbourne Heart.
However, the situation hasn’t got panicky for Melbourne Victory yet. They are still one of the top 4 sides in the A-League points table and their chances of qualifying for the finals are still very good. But, they have lost the momentum for sure.
At this point of time, the points’ tally of Melbourne Victory shows 19; that is 11 less than the no. of points secured by the table toppers Brisbane Roar.
The main reason behind the deterioration of Victory’s performance is Mitch Nichols’ sudden loss of form. The Queensland midfielder had been a stand out performer for the Navy Blues for the first 2 and half months of the season, but, in the last few matches, he has looked completely lost. His concentration level on the ground hasn’t been that high.
There have been talks about Cerezo Osaka being interested in him and planning to place a bid for him during the mid season transfer window. That might also be affecting his concentration a little bit.
Nichols had made his way to AAMI Park at the start of the ongoing season. He has so far made 13 league appearances for the Navy Blues and has found the back of the net on 3 occasions.
It’s very important from Victory’s point of view that he regains his form.
December 16th, 2013
Sydney FC star, Alessandro Del Piero, has once again dismissed rumours he plans to leave the A-League club in the January transfer window.
The 39-year-old’s future with the Sky Blues has been under the media spotlight of late, with a number of clubs back in Europe believed to be interested in acquiring the veteran Italian’s services next month.
Del Piero has missed two of Sydney’s nine games in the campaign so far but has insisted any frustration he has at the club at the moment is to do with his injury set-backs and not to do with his overall future happiness at the Sydney Football Stadium. Read the rest of this entry »
December 16th, 2013
After injury delayed the start of his return to Australia, Harry Kewell has admitted he still feels he has “unfinished business” with the A-League. The Socceroos star has spent the majority of the time since signing with the Melbourne Heart as a frustrated spectator, watching on helpless as his new side failed to register a win in their opening eight games of the A-League season.
Kewell made his long-awaited comeback in the 1-1 draw with the high-flying Western Sydney Wanderers, and the former Leeds and Liverpool forward will now be looking to get an extended run in the team over the Christmas period. Read the rest of this entry »
November 12th, 2013
Melbourne Victory have found a replacement for their former manager Ange Postecoglou, as they have appointed Kevin Muscat in the role for the next two years. Postecoglou recently took over the job as the national team manager of Australia. Muscat has the experience of working under Postecoglou as an assistant for four years. The first match for Muscat as the Melbourne Victory manager will see him take on Wellington Phoenix. The club chairman Anthony Di Pietro has expressed his confidence that Muscat will remain as the manager even after two years.
Di Pietro did admit that Muscat will undoubtedly be considered for the national team manager position in the next four years. Australia have done extremely poorly in recent friendly and competitive matches, which led to the appointment of Postecoglou. Postecoglou is one of the highly rated coaches in Australia. He arrived only recently to Melbourne Victory with the hope of leading them to the title after having done the same with Brisbane Roar for two consecutive seasons. Muscat has said that he has learnt a lot from Postecoglou and he will not be trying to deviate from what is predecessor has taught him.
Melbourne Victory can be expected to play in a similar way to that under Postecoglou.
“As head coach, it’s not about being a favourite son, it’s about being a father figure. And we’ve given him the opportunity to write that [history] and we look forward to that and hope that this is a long-term relationship. In fact, dare I say, I hope he’s in contention for the next Socceroos job, that would be a demonstration of what has been achieved,” said Di Pietro. “My ego doesn’t tell me that I need to fracture what’s happened in the last 18 months and rebuild it,” said Muscat after taking over the reigns from Postecoglou.
August 29th, 2013
Melbourne Victory will be taking on Liverpool in front of almost 100,000 people at the MCG in a friendly match. Manager Ange Postecoglou has said that playing against the European giants is certainly a daunting prospect, but that does not mean Melbourne Victory have to be extremely defensive in the match. There have been suggestions that the club will ‘park the bus’ in order to limit the damage against a team, who have been in imperious form in the pre-season so far. Liverpool only finished in the seventh position of the Premier league last season.
However, they have some of the best players in the world like Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez. They will have the capability to hurt any opposition if they are not careful. Midfielder Leigh Broxham has said that the team will be adopting a cautious approach to the match, but that will not mean a very defensive match. They expect to stick to their normal causing style of football with the addition of extra cautiousness. Melbourne Victory will be hoping that a good result from this match will be a precursor to the A-League that will begin in October.
Manager Postecoglou will have the ability to field Billy Celeski in addition to the usual players.
“It was a step in the right direction. We tweaked our game plan slightly for the game against Liverpool and we obviously need to do that with the personnel we’ve got with the boys being away with the national team. We changed a few things which seemed to work well. Our game plan will be similar in terms of attacking the way that we want to, it’ll just be tweaked a little bit defensively, to be a bit more compact. We’ve just got to pick our times about when is best to press and things like that,” said Broxham.
July 1st, 2013
Australian midfielder Mark Milligan has been linked with a move away from Melbourne Victory in the last few weeks, but he has rejected speculation by saying that it would take something special to take him away from the club.
The 27-year-old has been one of the best players for the national team in the recent World Cup qualifying matches. His stunning form has been one of the reasons behind Australia making it into the 2014 FIFA World Cup without any troubles. Now, it has been reported that several Championship clubs are looking at his signature. Read the rest of this entry »