Melbourne Victory captain Carl Valeri says he expects Saturday night’s Melbourne Derby at Etihad Stadium to be a another fiery contest.
Victory and City have met three times already this season, with Victory prevailing 2-1 in the last match between the two sides in December.
“It’s going to be very hard out there. It’s going to be a tight game with a lot of pressure,” he said on Wednesday.
“We look back to the last Derby and how exciting it was. The intensity at which the game was played, we have to match that and do better.
“They’re going to be up for it too, so it’s not going to be an easy battle. It’s going to be a great game, they always are.
“The Derbies are the most exciting games of the season for me. It’s where the best football is played, it’s where the best atmospheres are.”
Valeri said Victory has put the disappointment of the past fortnight behind it following losses to Wellington Phoenix, Perth Glory and Sydney FC.
Despite the results, Victory remains in second spot on the Hyundai A-League ladder ahead of its meeting with fourth-placed City.
“We’ve just got to get rid of those errors that are costing us goals,” he said.
“We’ve got our heads held up high because we do work hard.
“We’ve got to stick together at those moments, realise we’re going through a patch where we are under pressure and deal with it better.”
Valeri said Victory is focused only on its own performances, rather than the race for the Hyundai A-League Premiership.
“You can lose your way very easily. We were hot on (Sydney’s) tails not too long ago and now they’re 11 points in front of us,” he said.
“Our focus isn’t catching them. Our focus has to be on us.”
Tickets for Saturday night’s Melbourne Derby at Etihad Stadium are available here.