A sense of fate after being drawn against Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors in the AFC Champions League Round of 16 has not been lost on Melbourne Victory players.
As if it needed any more motivation to reach the Quarter Finals of Asia’s premier club competition, Victory faces the team which denied it access through the group stage in 2014.
On that occasion, a 0-0 draw against Jeonbuk on Match Day 6 saw Victory finish third in the group and miss out on the Round of 16 to the South Korean side on goal difference.
“We played there two years ago and I think we should’ve had a penalty near the end there to put ourselves through, which we didn’t get,” Victory goalkeeper Lawrence Thomas told the Daily Football Show.
“I haven’t forgotten that, even though I wasn’t playing in that game.
“They’re a very solid team, so I’m looking forward to playing here and then getting over there.”
Victory created history this week by making the last 16 for the first time in five attempts, thanks to a 2-1 win over Gamba Osaka.
Its sole focus now is preparing for the two-legged tie against Jeonbuk, which begins with a home fixture on Tuesday, May 17.
“Being part of this club, every game we’re expected to win, regardless of who we play. That’s the goal,” Thomas said.
“For the team in general, the domestic season didn’t go as well as we wanted, so this is a step to sway things back the way they should be at this club.”
Tickets for Victory’s Round of 16 home game are on sale now. Click here for ticketing information.