Round 8 preview: Roar v Victory


Melbourne Victory aims for a sixth straight win when it visits Brisbane Roar in the Hyundai A-League on Friday.


Victory continued its good form in Round 7, overcoming Adelaide United 2-0 at Marvel Stadium.

Strike duo Kosta Barbarouses and Ola Toivonen scored second-half goals as Victory made it five straight wins.

Having opened up a four-point gap to third place, Victory makes the trip to Suncorp Stadium to face the Roar on Friday.

Toivonen’s goal against the Reds was his second of the season, while Barbarouses’ was his second in as many games.

After a calf injury delayed his start to the campaign, Toivonen has now contributed two goals and two assists in just 254 minutes.

Terry Antonis, who set up the Swede’s sealer with a classy back-heel, has also made a strong start to the season.

In seven games, the midfielder has three goals and as many assists, with only Keisuke Honda (four) having scored more for Victory.

Honda was named the PFA A-League Player of the Month for October/November earlier this week.

Victory suffered an early setback against Adelaide, with centre-back Georg Niedermeier hurting his ankle.

Ahead of the trip to Brisbane, Victory has a good recent record against the Roar, winning three and losing just one of the previous five meetings between the clubs.

Brisbane is ninth on the table after picking up six points from its opening seven games.

Player in focus

What they said

“The shorter turnarounds are better for us, especially after a loss. You want to get out there and prove yourself again so Victory will be a good test for us, but we’re very capable of doing a job against them. We’ve done it in the past. We’ve got a strong record at Suncorp Stadium so we’re going to get on that home turf and give it all we can.” – Roar captain Matt McKay.

“Like normal, everyone gets up to play us, for whatever reason – the stature of the club, the crowd that comes along to the games. It just always keeps us on our toes, we’ve always got to be on top of our game to play.” – Victory forward Barbarouses.

Last time

Hyundai A-League 2017/18 Round 20
Melbourne Victory 1-2 Brisbane Roar
Friday, February 9, 2018
AAMI Park, Melbourne

Brisbane recorded a narrow win over Victory when the teams met earlier this year.

First-half goals from Massimo Maccarone and Brett Holman put Roar ahead, with Victory only able to pull one back through James Troisi’s spectacular long-range strike in the second half.

As it stands

Head to head

Round 20, 2017/18: Victory 1-2 Roar at AAMI Park
Round 11, 2017/18: Roar 1-2 Victory at Suncorp Stadium
Round 6, 2017/18: Victory 1-1 Roar at Marvel Stadium
Round of 32, 2017 FFA Cup: Roar 1-5 Victory at Perry Park
Semi Final, 2016/17: Victory 1-0 Roar at AAMI Park

Match details

Brisbane Roar v Melbourne Victory
Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Friday, December 14, 2018
Kick-off: 7.50pm AEDT


Melbourne Victory squad: 1.Matt ACTON (gk), 2.Storm ROUX, 3.Corey BROWN, 4.Keisuke HONDA, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 8.Terry ANTONIS, 9.Kosta BARBAROUSES, 10.James TROISI, 11.Ola TOIVONEN, 13.Birkan KIRDAR, 14.Thomas DENG, 16.Josh HOPE, 19.Rahmat AKBARI, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 21.Carl VALERI (c), 22.Nick ANSELL, 26.Nicholas SETTE, 30. Matthew Sutton (gk)
**two to be omitted**

Ins: 22.Nick ANSELL (return from injury) 21.Nicholas SETTE (promoted), 30. Matthew Sutton (promoted)
Outs: Georg NIEDERMEIER (ankle – TBC)
Unavailable: Kenny ATHIU (hamstring – TBC), Jai Ingham (quad – TBC), 15.Raul BAENA (hamstring – TBC)