Aloisi Sets Record, Primed For Muscat Duel

Sydney FC striker John Aloisi bagged his tenth goal of the 2009/10 Hyundai A-League campaign in the first leg of the Major Semi Final series against Melbourne a fortnight ago and in doing so set a new club record.

Sydney FC striker John Aloisi bagged his tenth goal of the 2009/10 Hyundai A-League campaign in the first leg of the Major Semi Final series against Melbourne a fortnight ago and in doing so set a new club record.

Aloisi has played 22 games for the Sky Blues this season, starting 14 times and has scored 10 goals - the most in a single season by a Sydney FC striker.

Aloisi said the Sky Blues enjoyed a light week immediately following the first leg clash before the team ramped up preparations for Sunday-s crucial clash this week.

“Training has been good. We tapered it down a bit last week. We recovered from the two games we had in four days,” Aloisi said.

“We went to Bondi and relaxed but we trained every second day on the pitch. Importantly we recovered well before we stepped it up this week.

“The boys have been looking sharp and we are waiting for the boys to get back from international duty so we can resume training all together as a squad. I am sure they will come looking sharp. After training with the national team you always come back on a high.”Aloisi, who had an enthralling battle with veteran Melbourne defender Kevin Muscat at Etihad Stadium in the first leg of the Major Semi Final, believes Sydney FC will be up for the rival-s fifth clash this season and third in a row.

“I am pumped up about the game in general and not just playing against Kevin Muscat,” Aloisi said.

“Playing against Melbourne Victory is always a massive game and there is a big rivalry there. We want to win because we want get a home Grand Final here in Sydney so it doesn-t matter who you are playing against, we just want to win and get the right result on Sunday.

“Everyone remembers the last time we played against Melbourne at home, there were 25,000 people there and that helped us.”

Aloisi said if Sydney FC sticks to its game plan they can account for the Victory and progress to the Grand Final.

“If we play our game the way we have played most of the season and we play well we know we can beat any side in the league.” Aloisi said.

“We are quite positive we can beat Melbourne if we play to our best. We think we can.

“We did that last time we played them here in Sydney and I think if we do the same things right, the basics that we have been doing most of the year, we will get the result we need.”

Aloisi has scored five goals in his last five matches and his big game experience is proving vital to Sydney FC.

“As an older player you try to lead by example, whether it-s on the pitch, off the pitch or in the dressing room. The younger guys look up to you and you try and lead by example, captain or not,” Aloisi said.

“It-s a pity we haven-t got Bimbi (Steve Corica) there because he has been one of our best players all year but we know he is gone and we just have to make sure the boys who do play, perform well.

“He is with us still and he is still part of this side.”