Ange Postecoglou’s Melbourne Victory were hoping to close the gap on the Central Coast Mariners when they traveled to Hindmarsh Stadium to face Michael Valkanis’s Adelaide United.
One of the players that will not be suiting up for the Victory is rookie defender Nick Ansell, who has a groin injury and will be out six to eight weeks.
“Obviously this is disappointing as Nick has been really good for us since he made his debut back in Round 11 against Brisbane Roar,” Postecoglou told melbournevictory.com.au. “It’s always hard for those guys who didn’t have the benefit of a full pre-season to get through an entire campaign unscathed and unfortunately that’s the case with Nick.”
Midfielder and central defender Leigh Broxham is hoping to contribute to the Finals Series ambitions of the Victory by signing a three-year contract extension. Broxham became a fixture to the squad in 2007 and is in his seventh season with the team.
“I wanted to give myself every opportunity here for the club to offer me a contract,” Broxham told Damien Souness of Omnisport. “I didn’t really look anywhere else.
“I saw where the club’s going, the direction we’re going already after six months (under coach Ange Postecoglou) and I was more than happy to be here. I had that drive and hunger to want to get an extension and that’s what happened.”
“I started the first game of the year and results weren’t going for us, so I think it’s only natural you try other players. The big one was when I did get my opportunity to let the boss know I was reliable and can do the job. I have to keep doing that each week. You rest on one week and you don’t do the job the next, you find yourself out of the team quite quickly.
“It’s constantly sticking to the structure of what Ange wants.”
Adelaide were in the thick of the chase for a Finals Series berth, and they put the pressure on the Victory, the Mariners and the Western Sydney Wanderers with a 1-0 shutout win at Hindmarsh. Jeronimo gave the Reds the eventual game winner in the 42nd minute of play.
Melbourne continue their season on Feb. 16 against the Western Sydney Wanderers at AAMI Park in Melbourne.