Date: November 08 2012
Melbourne Heart coach John Aloisi insists it's not yet reaching the must-win stage for the Heart or Brisbane Roar heading into Friday night's bottom-of-the-table A-League clash.
Finalists last season, the Heart is in last spot after losing its past three games, while reigning champion Brisbane is ahead only on goal difference, having picked up just one point from its past three matches.
But Aloisi said both clubs were playing better football than those records suggested and had plenty of time to make ground on the top sides regardless of how the AAMI Park clash turned out.
"If we lose it's not great for us," Aloisi said on Thursday.
"But there's a long way to go and we know that we're going to get a lot stronger.
"Not only the likes of Vinnie (Grella) coming back in, Fred will, there's a lot of other players that we're missing at the moment.
"It's not going to determine our season if we lose.
"We want to win, we want to win every game, but it's not the grand final tomorrow.
"But we'll treat it like it is."
The Roar have lost star striker Besart Berisha to injury, which Aloisi said would help the Heart's chances.
"He's a good striker, even when he doesn't look like he's involved he seems to pop up and score a goal, so to have him out is not great for them but good for us," he said.
Aloisi said the Heart had mostly played decent football during their losing streak but failed to take a few chances and paid for the odd costly moment.
A red card turned the tide of the round three game the Heart was on top of Wellington, a classy Pedj Bojic free kick proved decisive against Central Coast in the following round and an own goal cost the Heart last weekend against Western Sydney.
Aloisi said the Roar had also been unlucky to fall to Adelaide last round.
"I don't think they deserved to lose. They should have actually won that game," he said.
"I don't know if they'll come here without confidence. I've just got to make sure my players have got confidence."
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