23 Jan 2009

Phoenix in must win football A-league clash with Melbourne

3:34 pm on 23 January 2009

The Wellington Phoenix football club will look to keep their playoff chances alive this evening when they face the A-League's second placed side the Melbourne Victory.

The 5th placed Phoenix must win in Melbourne and hope fourth placed Central Coast Mariners lose to frontrunners Adelaide on Sunday to make the semi-finals for the first time.

The Phoenix face a tough task, as Melbourne desperately seek a victory to secure the A-league minor premiership and a coveted spot in next year's Asian Champions league.

Wellington defender Karl Dodd is well aware of Melbourne's goal scoring ability, saying the Phoenix can't afford to let them get on the front foot.

The Phoenix coach Ricki Herbert admits Melbourne will be tough to beat at home given it has been a graveyard for visiting teams.

But he says they can be beaten and his side will go out their with positive intent.

Herbert says the club's second A-league season is still a success even if they don't make the playoffs.

The match will kick off at 10 o'clock New Zealand time.