Carlos Salvachua celebrates first A-League win as coach

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It took six rounds but Melbourne Victory caretaker coach Carlos Salvachua celebrated his first win with the side in a last-minute 2-1 win against Adelaide United.

The win keeps Victory’s chances of a finals appearance alive but more heart-warmingly it gives Salvachua his first win at the helm of the club.

Kristian Opseth secured an early lead for United in the seventh minute, it then took another 50 minutes for Marco Rojas to find the equaliser at the conclusion of regulation time.

However, Andrew Nabbout’s strike into the top corner in the first minute of stoppage time gave Victory the 2-1 lead. Subsequently helping keep the side’s finals hope alive if they can string together some more wins and the results of other games fall in their favour.

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Salvachua entered the post-match press conference with a notable change in attitude as he prepared to finally praise his side to the media.

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He was happy.

“[I am] happy for the players first, because they work really hard,” Salvachua said.

“[I am] really happy for the staff as well.

“[I am] happy for the club, they need as well these [kinds] of moments.”

And happy he deserved to be.

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Humble in his victory, he made sure to acknowledge this was for every stakeholder of the club but the one group of people he mentioned, again and again, were the fans.

“The fans are always with us,” he said.

Shortly after, Salvachua commended Nabbout for the goal he scored and once again paid respect to the worthiness of the winning strike.

“The stadium exploded with energy,” he said.

“He (Nabbout) finished crying last game remember in Adelaide, and today as well, but crying in a different way.

“He’s a good boy and he needs these kind of moments

“Andy’s been fighting as well, hasn’t got the goal lately and it was beautiful, he got the goal today.”

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It’s this wholehearted perspective on the club and understanding that it takes the entirety of a team to achieve results that will keep Victory on the winning podium.

Victory sit six points outside the top six and still have time to turn their season around if they can secure another win next week against Sydney FC at Marvel Stadium.

With their next game in the AFC Champions League not until the April, Salvachua is relieved the club can focus purely on the A-League without the added pressure of extra games and international travel.

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Tonight is a confidence booster, for the players, for the staff, for the fans and whether he admits it or not, for Salvachua himself as well.

An appearance in the finals seems farfetched but may still be possible after tonight for Victory.

Are we in for the comeback for the season?

We have eight rounds of football to find out.

Feature Image Credit: Ngau Kai Yan

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Tricia Mifsud
Covering Melbourne Victory during the 2019/2020 season. Bachelor of Media and Communications (Sports Journalism) at Latrobe University. Dedicated to writing articles that sports fans want to read.