The reigning Premiers are set to have a huge says on who will claim this season’s title when they welcome the current league leaders to AAMI Park on Saturday night.
Melbourne Victory will pick a team for its clash with Brisbane Roar based on the fitness of its travel-weary squad, as they prepare to play their third match in eight days in three different countries.
“Naturally, it’s going to affect us dramatically,” said head coach Kevin Muscat.
“We left Melbourne eight days ago and the fixture hasn’t been kind to us.
“But it’s been a good seven days. We performed really well in Wellington, then got across to Seoul and performed well against a very good team and brought back a valuable point.
Victory’s travelling party arrived in Melbourne on Friday afternoon, and the condition of its players will be assessed before a starting XI is finalised.
“I’ve always said we’ll pick the best team available, but all the reports I’ve seen so far from the medical staff, they’ve got some serious concerns over quite a few players’ health in terms of injuries,” Muscat said.
“We’re going to have to assess those over the next 12 to 18 hours and pick a team that we think is not at risk of injury and gives us the best chance of getting a result tomorrow night.
“It’s going to be difficult for a lot of those players to back up tomorrow night, and I won’t be taking any risks with any of the ones that we think are at a high risk.
“We’ll make the best decisions for the individual players and their health, and the best decisions for the football club.
“There’s no doubt we’ll put a team out there tomorrow, and we’ll take the game seriously and perform well on the night.”
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