“We've played some great football”: Hopkins reflects on drought-breaking Premiership
It’s an outcome few would have tipped leading into the Westfield W-League 2018/19 season but Melbourne Victory’s Premiership triumph comes as no surprise to head coach Jeff Hopkins.
Victory ran out 2-1 winners away to Perth Glory on Friday night to seal the first ever Premiers Plate in the club’s history.
Goals to key duo Christine Nairn and Emily Gielnik overruled Sam Kerr’s header as Victory set up a home semi-final against the same opposition in a week’s time.
Speaking to melbournevictory.com.au in the wake of their historic win, Hopkins said he knew his side had the ability to do something special.
“I thought we had a squad that was capable of making finals, but the more I work with this group of players and the more I'm around them, it doesn't really surprise me," Hopkins said.
"There are some great characters in the team, they're so close, so tight as a group and they were so relaxed going out there (against Perth) it was almost like it was a practice match at Maribyrnong at the training ground.”
The Welshman, who had previously coached the Brisbane Roar, revealed the genuine happiness felt by all those at the club as the team continued to defy expectations and stay atop the ladder.
"It's a fantastic feeling. The girls are so happy, and I'm really happy for them," he said.
"They worked so hard, not just tonight to hold on at the end of the game but for the whole of the season.
"We've played some great football, they've been really close as a group and it's thoroughly deserved.
"For the players especially and for the staff that have supported them, it's been excellent."
Victory take on Canberra United in their rescheduled match this Tuesday before they get ready to 'Feel the Finals' next weekend.