Settled Victory ready for Perth test


Melbourne Victory’s busy fixture is a key factor behind the club’s recent run of good form, according to Rhys Williams.

Victory has been juggling midweek AFC Champions League fixtures along with its regular Hyundai A-League matches.

And while that could be seen as a hindrance, Victory is currently on a five-game unbeaten run that stretches back to late February, when it defeated Adelaide United 3-0 at AAMI Park.

“Every player will tell you that it’s better to play games than to train,” Williams said.

“Like the boss always says, we’re match-hardened now, we’re getting 90 minutes in nearly twice a week.

“It’s great, we feel great for it and the results are showing but it will mean nothing if we don’t carry it on.”

Up next is a trip to Perth to face a Glory side desperately trying to stay in the mix for a finals spot.

Kenny Lowe’s men are currently eighth on the table, four points off the last finals spot with four rounds remaining.

Perth-born Williams is a former Glory player, so he’s well aware of what Victory is up against on Sunday.

“They’re a great side and a lot of teams struggle when they go there, but we’re in good form and hope to continue that.

“It’s a bit of a fortress but we’ve done it once already this season by beating them 2-0 and hopefully we can do that again.

“They’re fighting for the top six and we’re fighting to keep third so it’s going to be an interesting battle.

Major news out of Victory last week was that of head coach Kevin Muscat’s two-year contract extension.

Williams acknowledges it gave the team a big boost heading into an important time of the season.

“It’s great to have a bit of security there, there’s no better man for the job than him and he’s done a great job so far.

“It does come down to us as well, it makes us feel good knowing that the boss is settled and with him being settled it helps us play better.

Melbourne Victory takes on Perth Glory at nib Stadium on Sunday, 25 March. Kick-off is 7pm (AEDT).