Perth Glory defender Andy Todd has called on his teammates to be ruthless at both ends of the pitch and embrace a busy schedule that could make or break the WA side's season.
Former Blackburn Rovers skipper Todd, who joined Glory at the start of the season, said the team would relish playing three matches in seven days, starting away to Melbourne Victory on Saturday.
Glory, who have six regular matches to play, are currently clinging to sixth spot and if they can stay in the top six places they will make the A-League finals for the first time.
Away games against Melbourne this weekend and Adelaide United, on Tuesday, before a home fixture against a Wellington Phoenix side featuring former Glory striker Eugene Dadi, will provide the players with the platform on which to build their finals claim.
And Todd believed the players would be up for the challenge.
"I don't think the lads see it as a problem. It's three games. That's what we get paid to do. I don't think it's a problem at all," he said.
"I think we'd prefer it that way. Get the games in thick and fast… this week could make or break us. It's a very important week.
"You could be well in the finals or you could be well out of them (after the three games). That's the way the A-League's going. Everyone seems to beat each other and it's very tight and I think it will go right to the wire, who's in and out of the finals."
Glory will go into the Victory match buoyed by clean sheets against Newcastle Jets and Sydney FC in their past two matches, but Todd urged the team to be hard-nosed at both ends of the pitch.
Although Glory put four goals past the Jets in a 4-0 thrashing on Boxing Day, they drew a blank in a goalless draw against Sydney on Sunday.
"In both boxes, you've got to be ruthless," Todd said. "You've got to be ruthless to keep a clean sheet and you've got to be ruthless to score goals. So we've got to get it right at both ends."
Todd, who has been one of the best players in the A-League this season, said he had no problems adjusting to the travel and would not use long flights as an excuse for underperforming.
"I've not seen the travel as a problem. I think our preparation is really good," he said. "I think it's just a mind set, isn't it? You know you've got to deal with it. It's part and parcel of playing for Perth."
The former chief executive of Dowerin Shire has been sentenced to 4.5 years behind bars for stealing almost $600,000 of council money to feed his gambling addiction.