Victory dismiss Miron rant

The Melbourne Victory camp has laughed off Miron Bleiberg's withering description of the team as dirty, brutal and intimidatory.

The Melbourne Victory camp has laughed off Miron Bleiberg's withering description of the team as dirty, brutal and intimidatory.

Stung by the loss of playmaker Bas van den Brink to a Grant Brebner tackle early in Sunday's 2-0 defeat by Melbourne at AAMI Park, the Gold Coast coach let fly at his post-match media conference.

Victory coach Ernie Merrick described Bleiberg's outburst as 'absolute nonsense', team manager Gary Cole said he was 'gobsmacked' while senior defender Adrian Leijer branded the situation 'ridiculous'.

They believe Bleiberg is cynically trying to fan the flames of criticism sparked by Kevin Muscat's horror tackle on Melbourne Heart winger Adrian Zahra which earned the veteran defender an eight-match suspension.

"Over the six years of the A-League we've played some of the best football in the A-League and I think, probably what's happened recently, that's the reason why this is bring highlighted," said Leijer.

"Something like what's happened, people tend to try and add fuel to the fire and I think that's what's happening."

"By no means do we play brutal. What words were they? War? They're just ridiculous comments."

"If he's trying to get the referees on his side if we play them in the finals, maybe that's what he's doing, but it's unfair."

Leijer said the stats simply don't support Bleiberg's claims.

Across the season, the Victory have committed 339 fouls and received 421, while the foul count in Sunday's match was 13-7 in Gold Coast's favour.

"It was no rougher than any other A-League game that we've played," said Leijer.

"In the change room this morning the boys are pretty much laughing at it."

"He's obviously got a hidden agenda and he's trying to work towards something."

Leijer said successive wins over North Queensland and Gold Coast reflect the resilience of the Victory squad which has closed ranks following the dramas surrounding Muscat.

"I think we've shown a lot of character," said Leijer.

"We've stood up and, if anything, we've been brought closer together and I think we've shown that on the park."

"I'm proud of the boys the way we've hit back this week."

"We've been hurt by what's been said about the club and we want to rectify that."

"We've used it as a positive, we've drawn closer."

"I think the last two games you've seen a pretty determined performance and hopefully we can carry that on into the finals."

Asked whether the team could suffer a backlash from referees in the finals, Leijer said: "I think the referees are doing a good job."

"I think they're smarter than that, they won't be drawn into it."

"As a club it doesn't really affect us, we're proud of the way we play."