The West

Perth hoodoo holds no fear for Victory
Archie Thompson

Socceroos striker Archie Thompson says Melbourne Victory are riding high on confidence and ready to overcome their nib Stadium hoodoo in tonight's clash with Perth Glory.

Recent moves in the transfer market have added spice to the build-up, with Victory beating Glory to the signature of Rangers striker Francesco Stella before poaching WA product Jesse Makarounas.

The loss of Makarounas was a further slap in the face to Glory's focus on nurturing young talent.

The 18-year-old Australian youth international joined a growing list of young players who have left Glory for rival A-League clubs in recent times, including Trent Sainsbury, Eli Babalj, Julius Davies and Adam Taggart.

Thompson shapes as a big threat to Glory alongside young New Zealand star Marco Rojas, who scored a wonder goal to seal the points for Victory last time the teams met.

But Victory must improve on a horror record at nib Stadium, having been beaten in eight of their previous 11 trips to Perth.

"We've got the confidence and know we can beat any team in the league when we're playing the football that we've been playing," Thompson said.

"That's the sort of confidence we've got to take into the match against Perth because we know that we don't travel well.

"It's a good opportunity for us to turn that (record) around."

Victory have lost just once in their past six games and are one of few challengers to Central Coast's grip on top spot.

"We're in a good position but we want to be winning the league," Thompson said.

"There are a few matches that we've let slip that could've put us in a better position but there are still a lot of games to play."

Glory are wary of Victory's pace and quick ball movement and have tinkered with their normal game plan to counter the threat.

Coach Ian Ferguson will temper his favoured high-pressing game so as not to give the likes of Thompson and Rojas space behind the back four.

"They love playing on the shoulders, they take chances and sometimes it pays off," Ferguson said.

"We've got to be wary that we can't give Thompson, Rojas and Flores the space that they've been getting lately."



Sydney FC v Wellington Phoenix, Central Coast Mariners v Newcastle Jets.


Brisbane Roar v Western Sydney Wanderers.

The West Australian

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