Melbourne Victory captain Muscat back for Kawasaki Frontale clash

Melbourne Victory skipper Kevin Muscat will return to the heart of defence when his side takes on J-League club Kawasaki Frontale tomorrow night.

Melbourne Victory skipper Kevin Muscat will return to the heart of defence when his side takes on J-League club Kawasaki Frontale tomorrow night.

The Victory are pointless after three matches in the Asian Champions League and badly need a win if they are any chance of progressing to the Round of 16, although that scenario looks extremely unlikely.

However, Muscat will be a welcome return to a side that conceded three goals in the opening 20 minutes against Kawasaki last week to eventually lose 4-0.

"Kevin will be right to play," Victory coach Ernie Merrick said.

"He will bolster us at the back and we'll be better with Kevin coming back. We'll be stronger and we'll have a better squad and be much fresher and fitter, too."

And Merrick was hoping for a much-improved performance to show the footballing world that his team could match it with the best in Asia.

“It's been very tough," Merrick added. "But we can't keep using excuses of being disappointed and the scheduling. It's a time to learn because we're going to go through the same thing next year, hopefully.

"We've just got to go out and show we can play in the ACL."

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