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Festive boost for Victory

Sunday, 6 January 2013 8:20 AM
 
 

Festive boost for Victory

Melbourne Victory coach Ange Postecoglou has labelled his team's performance over the busy Christmas-New Year period as 'massive'.

Victory's hectic schedule saw them play four matches in just 15 days but their ability to win three of those contests, including their comprehensive 2-0 triumph over Wellington on Saturday night at AAMI Park, greatly pleased Postecoglou.

"For all the clubs, this period is just a massive period of football," Postecoglou said.

"You're travelling; you're playing games one after the other in pretty trying conditions.

"We could hardly train this week because everyone knows what the heat was like in Melbourne but it still saps you.

"The fact that we've come through this four-game period with three wins I think is a massive testament to (not only) the work the players have done but also to their character."

While Victory ultimately had few problems in accounting for the Phoenix, Postecoglou maintained it was a challenge to gain the ascendancy - especially in the first half.

"It's a contest out there, it's not played on paper, it's not played on what you think is going to happen and they (Wellington) were desperate," Postecoglou said.

"I knew it would be hard for us to break them down, it would take a while for us to do that and the key point for us was to be patient with that because I've seen Wellington plenty of times undermanned, even this year, and teams haven't been able to beat them.

"It was really important for us that we stayed really professional in our performance and discipline and organisation and I thought we did."

Postecoglou was full of praise for Billy Celeski, who was one of Victory's best on Saturday night, and insisted there was nothing sinister behind his second-half substitution.

"I thought he was outstanding, he has been for a while for us," the Victory coach said.

"But tonight he was the one, particularly early on, that I thought was really asking the questions of the opposition.

"He's really stepped up in this last period and we took him off because he was a bit sore to be honest.

"He put his hand up and he felt a bit sore, he's had a big shift (in) these (last) four games."

 
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