Gold Coast to take on Melbourne with thin defence

Gold Coast United coach Miron Bleiberg is confident his team will perform well against league leaders Melbourne Victory despite having a gaping hole in defence.

Gold Coast United coach Miron Bleiberg is confident his team will perform well against league leaders Melbourne Victory despite having a gaping hole in defence.

United will be without key defenders Kristian Rees, Bas Van Den Brink and former Victory man Steve Pantelidis who are all suspended and goalkeeper Jess Vanstrattan today pulled out with a thumb injury leaving a threadbare backline to contest with the usually free-flowing Melbourne team.

Bleiberg admits it will be a tough task but has confidence that those players he promotes can do a job for him.

“The heart of our defence will be missing so it will be tough for us,” he said.

“Even with limited resources we know we can go to Melbourne and compete; it’s a great opportunity for some of our youngsters to prove that they are Hyundai A-League material.

“We have to try and weather the storm over the next couple of weeks and try to stay in touch with the teams at the top.

“The side we will put out this Saturday will be hardly recognisable to the one we put out at the start of the season. It’s frustrating, but we will show the effort and commitment we need to succeed, and if we get a little luck, anything can happen.”

Bleiberg added that with such thin defensive options, the team will look to use their goalscoring prowess to get over the line.

“We will have our backs to the wall. However, we still have players who can score goals for us. This week our strength will be in our attack, so we will play to our strengths,” he added.

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