Defence the goal for Victory

Skipper Kevin Muscat has conceded Melbourne Victory can't continue to leak goals at the current rate if they are to emulate their championship season of 2008-09.

Skipper Kevin Muscat has conceded Melbourne Victory can't continue to leak goals at the current rate if they are to emulate their championship season of 2008-09.

At the halfway point of the season, the Victory sit second on the Hyundai A-League table with 24 points from 14 rounds, having scored 22 goals, the best in the competition.

But they've also conceded 22 which is the competition's equal-worst, matched only by bottom side North Queensland Fury.

En route to last season's championship, Melbourne gave up just 27 goals for the entire (21-game) season.

"I'm not pleased about conceding goals but the reality is we've conceded the most and scored the most in the competition as well," said Muscat.

"With defending, the whole team's got to be accountable and we've conceded way too many goals from set pieces, I'm not going to hide away from that fact."

"But the way we set up and the way we play and the number of men we throw forward ... the style of our play and the chances we take to score a goal leaves us vulnerable."

Asked about criticism from supporters and the media about Rody Vargas' recent form and whether the skipper himself may be showing his age, Muscat said: "There's opinion and there's fact and the facts suggest that we're one point better off than we were at this stage last year and we went on to win all three trophies available."

"I'm not pleased about conceding goals, that's just the reality, but there's certainly a lot of positives along the way."

"The reality is that as a defensive three, as a back four, whatever you play, and the goalkeeper, you've got to be accountable."

"I'm personally responsible and I'll take it on the chin."

"We're conceding far too many goals but there are certainly a lot of positives out there as well."

Muscat said he believed New Zealand national keeper Glen Moss had been unfairly singled out for criticism in his first season with the club following his move from Wellington Phoenix.

"The defensive line has got to take responsibility and ... as a team we've got to defend better because a lot of our goals we've conceded off set pieces and it's not only the back four and goalkeeper that defend set pieces," he said.