Marco Rojas of the Victory celebrates after scoring a goal in the Melbourne derby.
Marco Rojas of the Victory celebrates after scoring a goal in the Melbourne derby. Robert Cianflone

Victory keen to nurse players through busy schedule

MELBOURNE Victory coach Kevin Muscat says he has a number of options against the Newcastle Jets at Simonds Stadium tonight as he looks to manage his players through the busy holiday period.

The Victory had an energy-sapping 4-1 win over the Central Coast Mariners in the A-League on Wednesday and faces Adelaide United at Coopers Stadium on Saturday.

Muscat said every player had a chance to contribute tonight as the Victory looks to make it four-straight wins and consolidate second spot.

"We'll pick the best team available, the best set of players that we think will give us the best chance of winning against Newcastle,” he said.

"There are a lot of factors that will come into play.

"I've said it previously - everyone will have an opportunity to contribute in the rest of this campaign.

"It's a clear message that when you do get that opportunity, you'll have the best opportunity to succeed if you're prepared the best.

"We'll give all the players ... the best opportunity to be ready when they're called upon.

"It's not if, it's when. It's a simple as that with the number of games we've got coming up.”

The Jets have picked up seven points from the last possible nine and coach Mark Jones believes his team can cause an upset in Geelong despite losing 2-0 to the same opponent in round eight.

"They (Melbourne Victory) are obviously very, very dangerous and we are aware of that,” he said.

"Victory and Sydney FC have probably been the two toughest teams that we have played against.

"(But) I think you have got an opportunity on the counter.

"They are a good defensive team but they haven't got the same record as Sydney FC defensively, so you have got to back yourself to score and we have got enough firepower to provide them with some danger.”

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