Kosta Barbarouses has revealed he will have a permanent new key role for Melbourne Victory this season, leaving behind his traditional winger spot.
Victory were without strikers Kenny Athiu and Ola Toivonen in their 1-0 away win over Newcastle Jets last week as Muscat elected to have Barbarouses and Jai Ingham as his attackers.
Athiu is likely to be out of action in the next fortnight due to a low grade hamstring injury, while Toivonen is yet to debut for the Big V because of a calf problem.
Victory got their first win of the season on the weekend and Barbarouses said he was now likely to stay up front for the rest of the season.
“I think that’s where Kev wants me to play and I’m really liking playing up there,” Barbarouses said today. “I’m getting more goal scoring opportunities, I’ve had a few chances in each of the three games.
“I put one in the back of the net on the weekend, but obviously it was offside. Once the first one goes in, I think I’ll get a bit more confidence off getting that third goal.
"It should be a good year for me in that position.”
Barbarouses also denied suggestions Victory lack depth without Athiu and Toivonen.
“I think we got unlucky with Kenny getting an injury too,” he said. “If Kenny’s fit, you probably do say we have depth with Kenny and Jai able to step in there as well.
“With a squad of 22 that we’ve got, there’s always going to be a bit of a lack of depth.
“In the A-League, that’s just the way it is and if you get a couple of injuries to key players, it does hurt every single team and I think we’re as well equipped as we can be.”
Victory face Central Coast Mariners on Sunday night for Remembrance Round and the 28-year-old said Ross McCormack and Tommy Oar needed to be treated with respect.
“It’s always a tough one because they’re always a dangerous side to play,” he added.
“Everyone lifts when they come to Melbourne, to AAMI Park and to Marvel as well so we’ve got to be wary of them. They’ve got some really dangerous players.
"We need to concentrate on ourselves but be wary of their threats too. From the first three performances, we can be confident.”