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Muscat to return for Melbourne Victory but Hernandez in doubt

Melbourne Victory will welcome back captain Kevin Muscat for next Friday's first-ever Melbourne derby. The Victory meet the Melbourne Heart in the Week 9 clash on Friday, October 8 which was postponed from this weekend so it would not clash with the AFL Grand Final replay between Collingwood and St Kilda.

According to Victory coach Ernie Merrick, that extra week will give Muscat every chance of returning from an ankle injury which has kept him out of the past two matches.

"The bonus is it gives another week for Kevin to get sharp. He's looking good," Merrick said. "I'll know more by Tuesday.

"When he's not out there on the pitch, he's been working very hard in the gym. He's in the gym more than anyone."

But Merrick said that there were doubts over the fitness of midfielders Carlos Hernandez and Grant Brebner.

"Brebs is probably a big question mark still (with broken toes)," added Merrick. "Carlos has taken a beating. He's been tackled from behind a lot, his ankles and calves are taking a bit of a pounding.

"There's a bit of a question mark over Carlos as well."

The first A-League Melbourne derby will take place at AAMI Park on Friday, October 8 - kick-off is at 7:30pm.

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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