Tony Popovic ahead of Round 3: Melbourne Victory v Melbourne City

Melbourne Victory Head Coach Tony Popovic spoke to media on Friday morning ahead of Saturday’s blockbuster Melbourne Derby at AAMI Park.

On the Melbourne Derby experience…

“It’s a wonderful experience and it reinforces why you do this job, why love the job and why you have so much passion for the job…we’re all excited about this game and our members feel the rivalry and the passion.”

“We’re told that we’re nearing a sell-out, so we’re very pleased to hear there will be a big crowd. We want all of our members to come as well to enjoy a special night of football.”

On the rivalry…

“Before last year, we spoke about some humiliating defeats for Melbourne Victory over a couple of years. We said we wanted to be very competitive with Melbourne City and show them that Melbourne Victory is back on track, and we did that in all three games.”

“The rivalry remains. Melbourne City remain a very good team, a top club. We feel we’re on track to being a top team again. We are a big club and the game is everything it should be – a game full of passion, emotion, it should be fiery and a real derby-type atmosphere.”

“I want our fans and members to bring that real Melbourne Victory aura and that noise they can bring on a special night at AAMI Park.”

On being more aggressive…

“We want to bring the aggression. My experience last year in all three games, the intensity went up, the aggression went up, the passion and the emotion went up – all we’re asking for is that happens again and that we match our opponent in all of those aspects.”

“We know we need to bring our best football to beat a very good team. That’s a wonderful challenge and one that should excite us and one we should embrace, which we will.”

Watch the full press conference: