Berisha continues to shine for in-form Victory
Besart Berisha might well be the finest player to have ever played in the A-League and the Melbourne Victory star once again showed just how good he is.
While there have been more high profile and talented players to have spent time playing in Australia, none have produced the level of performance Berisha has over a prolonged period of time. Having helped turn the Brisbane Roar into the A-League’s dominant force, the former Albanian international is doing a similar thing with Melbourne Victory.
With the club heading towards the finals in great form, a Berisha-inspired performance from the Victory saw Kevin Muscat’s men crush Perth Glory 4-1 to further consolidate their second place in the A-League ladder.
As well as scoring his 18th goal of yet another prolific campaign, Berisha produced one of the most skillful assists you’re likely to see this year. Aside from the damage he caused the Glory defense, the forward also weighed in with a tenacious job of chasing and challenging the Perth midfield in an incredible all-round display.
While head coach Muscat will be unhappy with the fact his Victory team aren’t able to continue their winning run into the next round due to Melbourne’s round bye. The weekend off is aimed at giving A-League teams a better chance when competing in the Asian Champions League. The downside, however, is it comes at a time in the season when teams are looking to pick up some momentum heading into the finals. For players such as Berisha, though, the break could come at just the right time as he prepares for a busy end of the 2016/17 campaign.
Melbourne Victory have enjoyed a very impressive home-and-away season so far, but their year has been overshadowed by a Sydney FC team that have lost just once all year. While the Sky Blues have odds of around 11/10 to lift the A-League title this season, the Victory know that they have a player more than capable of single-handily beating teams. And with the rest of their “fab four” — Marco Rojas, Fahid Ben Khalfallah and James Troisi — who all scored in the 4-1 win over Perth, this Melbourne team will rightfully fancy their chances of beating anybody.
In Berisha, the Victory have a player who not only has the experience of competing in the finals, but a player who has played a key role in teams winning the championship, lifting the title with the Brisbane Roar in 2011/12 and 2013/14 and then with Melbourne in 2014/15. Currently leading the goal scoring charts as well as providing a creative outlet for his teammates, there isn’t a player in the league in as good a form as Berisha as we head into the business-end of the A-League campaign.
This Melbourne Victory certainly aren’t a one-man team, but in Berisha they have a player who won’t be simply happy with the personal accolades that have come his way unless he can deliver another championship to his teammates.