Perth defender Micharl Thwaite says Glory must focus on their own attacking frailties, rather than Melbourne Victory's defensive problems.
Perth Glory centre-back Michael Thwaite has rubbished claims that Melbourne Victory-s poor defensive record will lead to their downfall in the finals series, likening their style of play to Brazil sides of yesteryear.
Victory have conceded 45 goals for the season and five in the last fortnight but Thwaite is adamant Ange Postecoglou-s side aren-t defined by their issues at the back.
“They would be doing analysis on that (their defence),” Thwaite said.
“They are like an old-school Brazilian team - if someone scores four goals, they will score five, but I-m sure they are working heavily on their defensive structures.”
If Glory-s defensive structures are off the mark, they too will be punished and Thwaite knows at least two of his enemies for the big clash all too well.
The men who could most likely punish Perth if they don-t take their own opportunities include Thwaite-s Qantas Socceroos- teammates Mark Milligan and Archie Thompson, and the defender is acutely aware that with them, Melbourne are a much more dangerous proposition than the Victory side Perth beat last time out, when Thwaite too was on international duty.
“The confidence is high in our camp, but we respect the way they play,” he said.
“I think Melbourne and Brisbane play the best style of football, it-s how the game should be played. They-re bringing in players like Milligan, Rojas and Archie that weren-t there last time, those guys can turn a game on its head.
“We know there will be a lot of attacking play.”
The flip-side of that argument is that Glory have struggled in attack this season and despite putting three past Victory in a must-win game a fortnight ago, Perth-s inability to take their chances is of concern to the central defender.
The problem amplified last week as Ryo Nagai rattled the woodwork with a poor penalty and then proceeded to smile about the miss, Thwaite is understandably concerned about his side-s run of misses from close range.
“If you look at the season in general we have lost a lot of games 1-0 where we have dominated the game but didn-t put away our chances,” Thwaite said.
“We had numerous chances against Adelaide to put the game to bed and we didn-t, but in finals football we need to take those opportunities because better teams will punish you if you don-t.
“I always think of the game as the worst-case scenario… what could happen if we don-t take those chances. The better teams will punish mistakes or missed penalties and it-s all about maintaining full discipline.”