Muscat: It wasn’t easy to pick ACL squad


Melbourne Victory’s AFC Champions League campaign gets underway on Tuesday night when South Korea’s Ulsan Hyundai come to town for Match Day 1.

Head Coach Kevin Muscat has named a 23-man squad for the Group Stages and recently had the unenviable task of deciding which of his four-pronged foreign contingent to leave out.

”It wasn’t an easy decision but given the depth we have in the middle of the park, unfortunately Mati Sanchez was the unlucky one,” Muscat said.

“Mati was obviously disappointed. He’s worked ever so hard since he’s arrived and has made a really solid contribution whenever he’s been called upon – but unfortunately four doesn’t go into three.

“Besart (Berisha), Leroy (George) and Kosta (Barbarouses) will be our three visa players, while we have also named some promising youngsters from our youth system who will benefit enormously from the experience.”

Melbourne Victory is drawn in Group F alongside Ulsan Hyundai, Kawasaki Frontale and Shanghai SIPG and is looking to progress to the knockout stages again, following its Round of 16 elimination to eventual champions Jeonbuk Motors in 2016.