Melbourne Victory head coach Kevin Muscat said his side’s tight loss to Adelaide United on Friday was similar to a final.
George Blackwood’s 81st-minute header was all that separated the teams during a tough encounter at Coopers Stadium.
It came just moments after James Donachie had a header ruled out for Victory for an apparent foul from a corner.
Speaking at a post-match news conference, Muscat discussed the game and James Troisi’s fitness after the midfielder came off in the first half.
on the game…
“It is what it is. We’ve conceded a goal and didn’t score so you get what you deserve. Performance is totally different. We were getting the ball down, we were trying and did play some really good stuff. In the game, based on almost a Semi Final if you like, where there was quite a bit at stake and that’s how the game seemed. It was edgy, a lot of fouls, I didn’t think there was a bad foul all night but there was a lot of stopping the game, I thought the game could’ve been allowed to breathe a little bit more. It would’ve been better for everyone, it would’ve been more entertaining, it would’ve been more exciting. And then, on the flip side, we had to deal with not too much build up, we couldn’t really press them, it was long balls into the corners and playing for second balls and for the main we handled that quite well so it was a little bit different what we had to deal with and we’ll keep persisting in what we believe or how the game should be played and the game’s turned on its head in one decision because there wasn’t too many chances and then when we score it’s incorrectly ruled out in my view.”
“He felt some tightness in his hamstring. It wasn’t an incident where he just felt it go, he just felt some tightening over the minute or two prior to his coming off so we’ll assess that and find out more tomorrow.”
“In that final third, there was a bit at stake for both teams and it was clear we were going for three points and at times it felt like we were the home team, with Adelaide sitting off and dropping deep. The atmosphere here is very good, it’s great, our fans come across in numbers and having said that I think for the main the biggest indication was how quiet it was up until Adelaide scored and I think that gave a true indication of how the game was being played and where it was being played. In that final third, at this end of the season, you’re not going to get five, six, seven clear-cut opportunities. Ola (Toivonen) goes through, he’s on an angle, it’s a very good chance for him. We actually do score a legitimate goal as well so you’re not going to get too many chances so as a performance, reviewing the performance I’m sure there’ll be some areas where we were good tonight, but the result clearly then means we’ve got to get better.”