Merrick supremely confident

An upbeat Ernie Merrick believes Melbourne Victory is perfectly placed ahead of the first leg of their Major Semi Final showdown with Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium on Saturday night.

An upbeat Ernie Merrick believes Melbourne Victory is perfectly placed ahead of the first leg of their Major Semi Final showdown with Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium on Saturday night.

The Victory emerged from a mid-season slump racking up 15 points from the final seven matches to claim the Hyundai A-League Premiers Plate and Merrick is expecting more of the same in the upcoming Finals Series.

"We had a three-game losing streak and then we played against Sydney and we were down two goals after three minutes and came back to win 3-2, and our next six games we've won five of them," Merrick recalled.

"So our build up to the finals is very good, we've got great momentum, we're driven, the boys are confident and seem to get better and better."

Merrick, who labelled the current Victory crop the best line-up the club has ever fielded, made no secret of his intentions against Aurelio Vidmar's men, promising all-out attack in Adelaide.

"We feel as though we've got the team that has to go out and attack in both legs. We don't want to try and defend away from home and get a draw," he said.

"We had the team that did that two years ago - we went out and did that - got the draw and then got the home win to put us into the grand final."

"Now I've got a different team, I've got a much improved attacking team - not only have Archie (Thompson) and Danny (Allsopp) got better, I've got (Ney) Fabiano up there and I've got attacking midfielders like Carlos Hernandez, Nick Ward, Tom Pondeljak, so we can really go out and attack teams because our defence has been rock solid."

Star Reds midfielder Travis Dodd concedes the Victory present a formidable obstacle on the way to the Championship, but warned Merrick not to get too far ahead of himself.

"We're pretty confident, we haven't lost a game in a few weeks so our momentum's going well as well," he said.

Dodd also played down his side's regular-season struggles against Merrick's men who have won all three encounters this season.

"We're coming off the back of a win against Central Coast and before we went to that game people were saying we hadn't beaten Central Coast all year," he explained

"So it's one of those things, the history books are there to be re-written for us and we just have to want it and go out there and do it."