Rojas ready for Champions League challenge

Marco Rojas

Melbourne Victory playmaker Marco Rojas believes the AFC Champions League restart in Qatar will provide the new-look squad with a chance to gel and better understand new Head Coach Grant Brebner’s approach.

The Victory squad arrived in Doha on Friday, where it will resume its Group E fixtures against Beijing FC, Chiangrai United and FC Seoul.

Faced by the reality of playing four games in ten days, Rojas insists it will take time for connections to form and chemistry to build.

The Champions League

“We have got a team that needs to gel together and gel together pretty quickly, in regards to the games coming up,” said Rojas.

“There’s an exciting feel to the squad, but it will take some time and a little bit of work to put it all together.”

The New Zealander will be meeting some teammates for the first time in Doha and is hesitant to make a prediction on Victory’s Champions League campaign.

“It is difficult to say,” he said. “We’re not going to go into a game and not want to win it. We guarantee we will work hard, come together and work on our philosophy.”

The Victory way

Rojas – who has made 85 A-League appearances for Victory – is encouraged by the attacking style being implemented by Grant Brebner since he was appointed as Head Coach.  

“When I played my best football here [at Victory], was when we played that type of football as a team,” said the 29-year-old.

“He [Brebner] is definitely looking to bring that back so it does remind me a bit of previous years.”

Rojas is backing his new teammates to adapt to Brebner’s plans ahead of the new A-League season.

“It has been a pretty tough start for him; in very difficult circumstances. We are all beginning to understand what it is that he wants and the kind of path the club wants to take.”

The challenge

Victory has already gained three points in Group E and will be hoping to add to its tally against Beijing FC, at the Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium on Tuesday evening.

With restrictions in Melbourne limiting Victory’s preparations for the Champions League, Rojas is driven by the prospect of facing some of Asia’s finest.

“It is a different take on the pre-season hit outs,” he said. “There will be some really good, competitive games and we are looking forward to testing ourselves.”

“We have only had the one competitive game in Melbourne and we’re really looking forward to playing against some top-quality teams.”

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