Melbourne Victory defender Roddy Vargas could be axed for Saturday night's Melbourne derby clash with the Heart.

The 32-year old could be the man to make way for the returning Adrian Leijer as coach Ernie Merrick looks to play a back four against the struggling Heart outfit.

With skipper Kevin Muscat not receiving a one-match ban for a misdemeanor in last week's match against the Brisbane Roar, Vargas may be the unlucky centre-half to drop out of the team.

"It's good we've got our two fullbacks - (Matthew Kemp) Kempy and Surat (Sukha) - so one of the centre-backs will have a break this week," Merrick said.

"I won't say which one. I'm going to go with a game plan that suits us against this type of formation."

Vargas has started all 18 games so far this season but with indifferent form in recent weeks, could face the chop for the in-form Leijer.