Casey Dumont, hero of last season’s A-League Women’s Grand Final, has urged Melbourne Victory to find their aggressiveness in a high-stakes rematch against Sydney FC.
Reigning champions Victory were left behind after a 1-0 loss to Western United, while Sydney lost to Adelaide United by the same scoreline.
Dumont made several important saves to help Victory secure a 2-1 victory in last season’s decisive game and urged his side to step in at Cromer Park on Saturday.
“Anyway, playing in Sydney will be a tough game and a very good game (with) courage,” Dumont told AAP.
“It comes down to who really wants more.
“We both have something to prove, Sydney also lost. So we both come into this game as ‘we want three points’.
“So the challenge is going to be there, it’s just going to be who is going to take it.
“Hopefully it’s like the grand final and both teams come together and it’s just a great game to watch and be a part of – but obviously we want to get the win.”
Victory’s defense came to a halt for United’s first-round goal and underwent numerous changes, with the departure of Brooke Hendrix, Courtney Nevin and Polly Doran.
Kayla Morrison returned from injury while Jess Nash and Natalie Tathem joined her and Claudia Bunge in the back four with Elise Kellond-Knight sitting in midfield.
But Dumont also urged his offense, led by Beattie Goad, Melina Ayres and Catherine Zimmerman, as well as Matildas playmaker Alex Chidiac, to try their luck.
“A lot of it was our own individual mistakes. We have a high level and we just didn’t bring it this weekend,” Dumont said.
“There were some really good patches from us, but a game lasts 90 minutes, so the main feedback was those times when we shut down, we really shut down.
“So we just have to make sure that we learn from it, grow and it doesn’t happen again.
“We did the pretty football but we didn’t win the game so we have to make sure we start putting the ball in the back of the net and being more aggressive in our attacks.”
Victory will find Lia Privitelli and Gema Simon injured on Saturday.
Coach Jeff Hopkins has confirmed Tathem will miss up to four weeks with a broken elbow and Emily Kos is expected to slot in at left-back.
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