Muscat hails Ingham’s ACL impact

Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat applauded goal-scorer Jai Ingham for making the most of his starting opportunity against Shanghai SIPG.

Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat applauded goal-scorer Jai Ingham for making the most of his starting opportunity against Shanghai SIPG.

Victory stun Shanghai SIPG in ACL thriller

Ingham was a surprise selection on the left of Victory's 4-2-3-1 formation in their AFC Champions League opener on Wednesday night, and the 22-year-old former Hume City attacker put the home side in front in the 31st minute at AAMI Park.

Selected in front of Connor Pain, who in his fourth season with Victory, Ingham was impressive in the first half, finishing off Oliver Bozanic's fine through-ball as the hosts went on to win 2-1.

Muscat hinted that Ingham's chance had come at the expense of some players, who have had plenty of previous opportunities.

"We have got to the point where people have had opportunities and this was Jai's opportunity," Muscat said at his post-match press conference.

"I felt with pace on both sides, we'd be able to cause some problems."

Victory keeper Danny Vukovic was quick off his line to deny Elkeson a goal.

Victory's coach added: "It was a very good finish. He [Ingham] played his part tonight and he set us up to be able to press very aggressively."

Shanghai equalised early in the second half through Wu Lei but Victory edged ahead again in the 73rd minute thanks to Besart Berisha's penalty.

The match then became frenetic - both Pain and Shanghai's Dario Conca hit the woodwork - but Victory held on for a vital three points.

Shanghai coach Sven-Goran Eriksson claimed his team deserved at least a point but Muscat disagreed.

"I think you'll find that we had the greater, better opportunities to finish the game off," he said.

Muscat also praised the performance of central defender Matthieu Delpierre, who he rated as "very close to" the man of the match.

"I thought he was outstanding, his composure spreads to the rest of the team," the Big V's boss said.

Victory boss Kevin Muscat watches on against Shanghai SIPG.