Joyce: We must see games out

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Warren Joyce insists his team could have got more out of the derby had they done a better job holding on in the closing moments.

It was still scoreless after 90 minutes between Melbourne City and Melbourne Victory with both sides showing periods where they could go on and win the game.

And it wasn’t until deep into injury time that Victory would find a dramatic late break through to deny City consecutive derby wins.

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A free-kick conceded on the wing proved costly as Dean Bouzanis couldn’t claim the long ball in and subsequently gifted Milligan the spot-kick.

The substitute made no mistake and made Joyce think about how his side capitulated, including Bouzanis’s error, which the Melbourne City coach says is just a mistake.

“It’s just a mistake, everybody makes mistakes, I thought we were dopey before it,” said Joyce.

“There was a drinks break and you’re talking to the lads about concentrating at that stage, it could go either way, in games like that sometimes it happens for both sides.

“You can either score in the last minute if you really focus, earn your jobs and drive the game or you concede.

“I don’t think it was a free-kick beforehand, it was an avoidable one as well because we’ve got three players around the ball so we shouldn’t give a free-kick away.

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“Things like that happen if you don’t manage the game through.”

City were lacking an attacking edge until Ross McCormack came off the bench in the second half, Joyce admitting his minutes needed to be managed after an injury scare.

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“There’s no way last week that you’re thinking Ross is going to be on the pitch,” said Joyce.

“He’s done a little bit of training but you’re mindful of wanting to be 100 per cent sure that he wasn’t injuring himself again.

“It’s been that kind of a week, he’s done some little bits all in short and sharp areas.

“He looked at it and thought as we’ve done earlier in the season with other players that maybe in the second 45 he could give us something, rather than in helter-skelter 60 minutes in the derby and not really touching the ball much.

“We planned it that way and hoped that he could give us something in the second half and I thought he did.”

McCormack was the only substitute used by Joyce and with the January transfer window fast approaching, he may need to look at a more reinforcements with the departures of Tim Cahill and Fernando Brandan.

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Liam Watson
Liam Watson
Intern for Melbourne Victory and Media and Communications student at La Trobe University.

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