Melbourne Victory’s star studded line-up has eked out results this campaign, but for the first five rounds, it hasn’t quite clicked into gear.
Carl Valeri – 7.5
Did the unfashionable stuff at the base of midfield to give his star-studded side a platform. Made an inch-perfect tackle to deny Kamau in the second half, and deputised at centre back when Ansell picked up a knock.
Raul Baena - 8
Showed his pedigree with constructive forward passing and lovely touches in tight areas. Tucked home his first goal for his new club, putting Elrich on the floor with a crafty fake before burying a controlled strike deep in the far bottom corner. Substituted shortly after halftime due to injury.
Terry Antonis - 9
A truly breathtaking turn and assist for Honda’s opening goal. Relished the freedom of the #10 role, and looked like he was having fun out there. Half-volleyed home emphatically for Victory’s fourth. A joy to watch.
Keisuke Honda – 10
One of the most spectacular individual performances we’ve ever seen in the A-League. Full stop. Opened the scoring with a fabulous header and completely ran the game, making interceptions, taking on players, and playing beautiful one and two-touch passes.
His approach seemed contagious, and his on-field leadership was obvious. To quote Andy Harper, he gave the Wanderers an “utter pantsing”.
Kosta Barbarouses – 8
Very lively, providing pace and width to complement Toivonen. Made a fool out of Elrich to earn the penalty, which he duly stepped up and converted. Continually stretched the Wanderers’ defence with his pace off the shoulder. He is clearly growing into his new role.
Ola Toivonen – 8.5
Missed a glorious opportunity in the third minute when put through one on one with Janjetovic. Involved in the build-up for Victory’s brilliant first goal, and provided a reference point for the Victory attacks, dropping off the frontline to link up with the midfielders.
Delicately teed up Antonis for the fourth goal. His return from injury has been a major catalyst for the gelling of this side.
Leigh Broxham – 6
Hardly caught the eye, but played his role as diligently as usual. The Victory undoubtedly lost a degree of fluency when he replaced the injured Baena.
Josh Hope – N/A
Not given enough time to influence the match. C’mon Musky – the game’s won! Put the youngsters on earlier!
Rahmat Akbari – N/A
Came on in the 86th minute.