Melbourne Heart FC midfielder Matt Thompson has emphasised the importance of the side entering the finals series on a high by claiming victory in tonight’s clash with Adelaide United.
Melbourne Heart FC midfielder Matt Thompson has emphasised the importance of the side entering the finals series on a high by claiming victory in tonight-s clash with Adelaide United.
While the Red and White have been unbeaten in five matches, playing scintillating football in patches, John van ‘t Schip-s side has failed to register a win in three weeks, conceding leads in clashes against Sydney FC and Wellington Phoenix over the last fortnight.
Thompson believes the side must reverse this trend if it hopes to make an impact come finals time, starting with Adelaide at Hindmarsh Stadium.
“It-s a good position to be in obviously as nothing much rides on that last game, but I guess it-s important for the team to go into the finals with some confidence,” he said.
“Last week wasn-t a great way to finish, and in the finals games, if you-re up 2-0 and you get to 2-2, it-s not good enough.”
Adelaide has arguably been Heart-s bogey side this season, clinching an unlikely 3-1 win in the their last meeting at AAMI Park on January 4.
Though United were undoubtedly spurred by prodigal son John Kosmina-s return to the helm of the Club, Adelaide appears to pose a uniquely challenging proposition to the Melbourne side.
Indeed, while United may sit second last on the Hyundai A-League table, the Reds remain a team of substantial quality, highlighted by a stunning start to its AFC Champions League campaign.
Adelaide recorded an emphatic 2-0 victory over Japanese nemesis Gamba Osaka on Tuesday night to place it in the box seat to qualify for the second round of the continental competition.
Thompson said: “They are playing two games in four days, which is going to be tough on them.
“They-re not in the finals, and their focus will be on the Champions League, but there-s no reason why they-re not going to come out tonight and try to end their season on a high."