Normally if a team is involved in multiple competitions it can prevent the side from being at their peak each game due to fatigue and rotation that would most likely occur.

However, Melbourne Victory has experienced the opposite effect given they’ve had improved A-League performances coinciding with the AFC Champions League and used that to their advantage rather than finding it difficult to balance between the two.

Certainly, the change of the A-League’s fixture to accommodate Victory has done wonders to ease the workload which helps to not heavily influence the A-League results with the ACL commitment.

Embed from Getty Images

Victory are building momentum at the right time of the season with three straight wins in the A-League ahead of an away trip to face Perth Glory.

Defender Rhys Williams believes he and the rest of the squad are embracing the ACL as a perfect opportunity to gain extra match fitness for the remainder of the A-League home-and-away season and if they make the finals.

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

“Like the boss always says we’re match-hardened now, we can get 90 minutes twice a week and we feel great for it, the results are showing.

“It’ll mean nothing if we don’t carry it on.”

There’s still a couple of ACL group stage matches against Ulsan Hyundai and Shanghai SIPG to come before the A-League campaign ends and judging by recent form, Victory want to take it in their stride.

Embed from Getty Images

After working hard to claim third position, Williams desperately wants to keep it that way knowing a slip up can see Victory fall back down the table.

“Three weeks ago we sat down in our team meetings in fifth position,” he said.

“Our task was to catch fourth which we did and then the next task was to stay in fourth.

“The next one was to catch third which we’ve done now, we can’t switch off and make third our own.

“We’re in the driver’s seat now and we can’t switch off, there’s some great teams below us and we want to hold on to that third spot.”

SHARE
Liam Watson is covering Melbourne Victory this season while completing Media and Communications at La Trobe University.