The turning point on way to W-League title

Melbourne Victory

From a 6-0 loss to Westfield W-League champions in less than three months. A lot can change quickly.

Melbourne Victory drew with Brisbane Roar before a record 6-0 Melbourne Derby thrashing of City to begin its season.

However, it then went down in the Derby before being handed a 6-0 defeat by the Roar.

With four points from four games, Victory’s season looked shaky. It travelled to Adelaide needing a response, and it got one with a 1-0 win. That started a seven-match unbeaten run before it fell short of the Premier’s Plate, but recovered to win a second championship with Sunday’s 1-0 extra-time win over Sydney FC.

“I’m just really pleased. If we go back to the Brisbane game, coming off a 6-0 defeat away from home, how we reacted to that and how we just, not rebuilt our season, but things could’ve gone off the rails there,” head coach Jeff Hopkins said.

“I think it was two defeats on the spin and a real heavy one, and the way that we dealt with that game really set us up for the rest of the season and gave me a lot of confidence that we would be better later in the season because the players had a real good look at themselves and didn’t look to make excuses.

“It’s like all of us, we all had the coaching staff and ourselves as well, we had to reflect on it and look at it and say we had to better and we were and I thought the honesty of the players and the willingness just to do that and to then buy into making things better was a real kind of turning point of the season.

“From that point on, I think everything sometimes you get on a bit of a downward spiral, I think everything was on the up after that and I think we gradually got better and better each week in lots of different areas.

“It wasn’t an overnight thing, it was just we kept chipping away, chipping away and then by the end of the season when the games are really important, we’ll be in a much better place and we definitely were.

“I’m really proud of the effort the players put in to make themselves better, to make the team better and they deserve all the plaudits. They’ve been fantastic and it’s nothing more than they deserve now.”