Galloway believes returning marksman will lift

Ahead of tonight’s first Elimination final against Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium, Melbourne Victory fullback Scott Galloway says that having Besart Berisha back from suspension will mean the star striker will lift against his former side.

In last weekend’s 0-0 draw that denied Brisbane Roar the Premiers Plate, Victory rested five key players.

But for tonight's semi-final clash the A-League champions will be at full strength after Daniel Georgievski, Leigh Broxham, Kosta Barbarouses, Archie Thompson and Matthieu Delpierre were promoted to the squad.  

Joining them will be Nick Ansell - who returns from injury - as well as Besart Berisha had his suspension from the Wellington Phoenix game shortened to just one match.

Berisha who was sanctioned for kicking out at Phoenix defender Andrew Durante while getting treatment during Victory's 4-1 win on April 2, and was originally given a two game ban.

However, the FFA's independent disciplinary committee reduced that ban to one game after they agreed that it was Durante's intention to bait Berisha into reacting.

Galloway says that he is certain that the Albanian striker will be up for tonight’s big clash.

“It’s fantastic to have Bes back in the team,” he said.

“He lifts for games like this, we know he does. All we want is to have him playing and that’s all he wants to do is be playing. 

“It’s great to have him in the team. It’s another player that could have had a possibility of missing but he’s been allowed to play. So for us we have a full squad to select from and it’s great to have him in it.”

Meanwhile in January this year it looked like Victory club captain Carl Valeri would not play again this season after suffering an inflammatory brain condition which have affected his balance. 

The condition left him sidelined since November 28 but the World Cup Socceroo recovered and has been back for Victory’s last two games.

“It’s fantastic,” Galloway said.

“Everyone’s been waiting for him to come back for a long time. Obviously he had to take his time coming back but he’s 100% and it’s good to have him back in the squad.

“We’ve got everyone back now it’s fantastic. It’s good morale for the boys. He’s a fantastic leader to have in the team and he’s a fantastic player and that’s what you want.”

The current A-League Champions have been undefeated in their last six encounters including the Asian Champions League but even though Victory have had a spike in form, Galloway says that there is no clear choice in who will win tonight’s game. 

“I don’t think you can say who is favourite and who is not,” he said.

“We know what we have to do. We know how we are playing coming into this. 

"This is a big game for us right now. We want to go out and get the win, obviously it’s the only result that you want from this.

"We look at ourselves we know what we can do and we know on our day we can beat anyone.”

  • Con Stamocostas is an Australian football writer. Click here to see more of his work and check out the latest episode of his A-League Snobcast with co-host Rob Toddler.