Melbourne Victory striker Archie Thompson denies the club is embarking on a revenge mission against Brisbane Roar on Saturday.
Just two games into Ange Postecoglou’s reign, his former Roar side put Victory to the sword at Suncorp Stadium, thumping them 5-0.
Since then the sides’ fortunes have contrasted starkly – with Victory charging up the A-League table with five wins and a draw from their past eight games, while Roar are slumped in ninth place after a poor run of form.
Although he admitted the dressing room was like a morgue for days after the Round 2 thrashing, Thompson said revenge over Brisbane is not a primary motivator this weekend.
“I’ve been (with the Socceroos) away for the last two weeks. It’s not about them it’s about us. We’ve been playing some decent football over the last couple of weeks,” Thompson said after training at Gosch’s Paddock on Thursday.
“(It was like) a morgue, as expected – 5-0, biggest loss in our club’s history. The boys were disappointed because they were all really up for that game, being against a champion team against Brisbane.
“They’re (Brisbane) up against the wall at the moment. I think I saw (Erik) Paartalu talking about how it could be a defining game for them, so they’re going to be up for it too – it’s going to be an exciting match.”
Thompson said he was not overly concerned by the Round 2 defeat, and said Victory were always confident they would turn their early-season woes around.
“It was only Round 2. If you start thinking ‘we lost a Round 2 match, that’s the end of our season’ well, that’s not the attitude we should be having,” he said.
“We always knew that we were going to get better. It was a matter of time. Now we’re coming to terms with how everyone plays, and you can see it starting to work on the weekend.”
The evergreen 34-year-old said he had enjoyed his time away with the Socceroos in Hong Kong, where his four goals helped his country qualify for next year’s East Asian Cup, but conceded he had found the workload tough.
“It was great, it was good to qualify for a tournament next year,” Thompson said.
“But last week was tough. Four games in a week, it’s hard yakka, it doesn’t matter what opposition you’re playing against.
“And today, coming to training, I got put in the starting line-up – I tell you, I almost substituted myself out of it,” he joked.