Brebner proud of Victory after Champions League win

Melbourne Victory

Melbourne Victory head coach Grant Brebner was proud of the club after reaching the last 16 in the AFC Champions League.

Victory progressed from Group E after recording a 2-1 win over Seoul in Doha on Friday morning (AEDT).

After Marco Rojas’ opener, Jake Brimmer netted a first-half penalty, Victory holding on to reach the Round of 16 for the second time in its history despite Hwang Hyun-soo’s 64th-minute header.

Brebner hailed the club’s progression after a difficult preparation amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s a fantastic achievement. We’ve had a few challenges this year as everybody has across the world, but particularly in Melbourne it’s been quite difficult,” he told Fox Sports News.

“It’s a nice way to put a little bit of a smile on our members and fans back in Melbourne.”

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Brebner added: “I’m really, really proud (of the team) and it extends further than that.

“Our CEO, Trent Jacobs, has worked tirelessly, there’s been a lot of work behind the scenes to put this squad together, put the staff together before we even got here to Doha.

“It’s been a big few weeks, but there’s been a lot of people who have worked tirelessly to get us to where we are and I hope they’re all enjoying the result as well to get out of the group.”

A new-look Victory has gelled during its time in Doha, and it will face Ulsan Hyundai in the Round of 16 on Monday morning (AEDT).

Brebner said the win over Seoul was a boost for his players, but he always believed in his squad.

“In all honestly, I always believe that the group of players I put together are going to be good enough to win games regardless of the opposition,” he said.

“Of course we’re not at a stage fitness-wise that we’d like to be at so for want of a better phrase there’s still a lot under the bonnet once we get fitter and we start playing more matches together, but this has come as a nice little lift to the group.

“We only welcomed some of the players 10 days ago, three players met us here in Doha, so we’ve been quickly trying to gel on and off the park and this result will go a long way to moving us forward.”