AAP Soccer

Reds wary of Victory A-League ‘bounce’

By AAP Newswire

Out to snap a four-game losing streak, Adelaide United will be keen to avoid the new coach 'bounce' when they host A-League rivals Melbourne Victory.

The Reds come into Friday night's game at Coopers Stadium acutely aware of a Victory side who will be keen to impress caretaker coach Carlos Salvachua, after Marco Kurz's sacking.

Kurz made way earlier this week after being sent off in Sunday's 3-2 loss to Central Coast, just 13 games into his tenure after previously coaching the Reds for two years, with Salvachua promoted until the end of this season.

Reds coach Gertjan Verbeek sympathised with Kurz, but said he wasn't feeling under pressure himself.

In response to queries over potential unrest in his squad, the Adelaide coach said he expected his players to be unhappy, given their recent poor form.

"I have never met a team who is losing four games in a row that are happy," he said.

"If they are happy, I kick some ass after four losses."

United defeated Victory 3-1 in November, with Riley McGree bagging a double and Michael Maria also scoring, while Ola Toivonen found the net for Victory.

Captain Toivonen will be back from a groin injury for this game, while full-back Corey Brown has been released.

The Reds will be without playmaker James Troisi, who is recovering from a hamstring injury, but Verbeek won't be drawn on any speculation the former Victory man is looking to move away from Adelaide during the transfer window.

"James is training hard to get an injury better and, hopefully, he will join us at the beginning of the week next week and join us in the next game (against) Western (United)," Verbeek said.

STATS THAT MATTER:

* Adelaide have won their past three A-League games against Victory

* Victory have scored six goals within the opening 15 minutes of games this season - equal best of any team

* United have been beaten in their past four games - as many as they'd lost in their previous 15 (W10, D5).

Stats provided by Opta