Muscat bullish on Victory A-League hopes

Nov 30, 2017 - 10:32 PM Melbourne Victory seem to be teetering on the brink of a wasted A-League season but coach Kevin Muscat is adamant their "good is good enough" to mount a recovery.

Victory sit eighth on the table ahead of Sunday's tricky away fixture against Wellington Phoenix.

On-field disciplinary issues, international call-ups and injuries have cruelled Muscat's hopes of a fast start to the campaign.

That run will continue in Wellington, with marquee midfielder Mark Milligan suspended and Matias Sanchez to take his place.

Lawrence Thomas (finger) and Rhys Williams (back) will travel to New Zealand despite missing training this week and doubts lingering over their fitness.

Defeat to Wellington would mean the heavyweights end round nine in the bottom two, with just one win - away to Perth Glory - to their name.

And for all the excuses - self-imposed or otherwise - that Victory might have for that record, time is running out to rectify their run.

"I can sit here and state some facts and discuss those facts but I'm loathe to do it because I don't want them to be seen as excuses," Muscat said.

"From round two to this point we've made 14 changes to the starting eleven. It's a high number.

"We haven't coped with that anywhere near well enough.

"Like in relation to our discipline, we've got to take responsibility.

"I'm really still positive. I'm still really enthusiastic that our good is good enough."

Muscat - who is in the frame for the vacant Socceroos job - included himself in Victory's list of under performers this season.

"Collectively, everybody has got more to give. I don't think any of us, myself included, is at our best," he said.

Despite seeing Thomas and Williams - who have started every match this season - depart training early this week with issues, Muscat said they were on track to play at Westpac Stadium.

"(Williams) wants to be out there and we'll still make a final decision but at this point in time from my perspective he's available ... if there is any doubt he wouldn't have travelled," he said.

"I didn't even see how (Lawrence's injury at training) was newsworthy. He's got a sore finger. He'll be fine."


* Wellington have won the past two fixtures against Victory 3-0, their only back-to-back wins over Muscat's side in A-League history.

* Victory are the league's lowest scorers with nine goals from eight matches.

* The Phoenix and Dario Vidosic are flying high in the box - they have a league-high six headed goals, with Vidosic netting four.

Source: AAP

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