Kruse talks up Hoogland importance


Robbie Kruse talked up the importance of Tim Hoogland after the defender made his first Melbourne Victory start in the Derby win over City.

Hoogland returned from injury and impressed in the centre of defence in Saturday’s 2-1 win at AAMI Park.

The German and Kruse played together at Bochum in the past two seasons and Kruse said the 34-year-old was a key for Victory.

“You don’t get to the level he got to without being a really good footballer so he’s played Champions League and in Germany for 12, 13 years so he knows what he’s doing,” Kruse said.

“You could see the experience he brought to the team and for an older guy he’s really fast as well which is vital.

“It was a really good game from him and you could see how much he really shored up that back line and it’s also his talk that helps the boys around him and you saw ‘Donks’ (James Donachie) put in an excellent performance as well so I think he helped him a lot.”

Ola Toivonen’s brace saw Victory past City and Marco Kurz’s side squandered several other chances in a strong performance.

Kruse hopes Victory can use the win as a platform ahead of its next game – hosting the Newcastle Jets at AAMI Park on January 5.

“It’s massive. We thought that was the case against Perth too so obviously we don’t want to get carried away,” he said.

“But being Christmas now and a bye going into that with another loss would’ve been quite demoralising so the win has lifted everyone. You can see the mood’s changed a lot but more so obviously gives us a bit more confidence and probably takes the pressure off a little bit more which is really good for some of the younger players as well.

“I’m just really happy for the club on a whole and obviously for the gaffer and his staff because the pressure has been on him a lot which is probably our own doing so, really positive.”

Elvis Kamsoba, playing mostly as a number 10, produced a fine display and the attacker praised his more experienced team-mates – Toivonen, Kruse and Andrew Nabbout – for their guidance.

“Ola always coaches because obviously he’s in front of me all the time so he’s always telling me go left, go right and that helps me a lot so he’s coaching me every game and even at training as well, he’s always coaching me,” he said.

“Nabbout, also Krusey, all the players are always coaching me which is good so that helps me a lot.”

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