Friday, March 1, 2013
Phoenix desperate to end week with win
Wellington Phoenix acting coach Chris Greenacre is desperate to end what he describes as the most "turbulent" week of his life with victory over Melbourne Heart on Sunday in Dunedin.The Phoenix are playing their third A-League game in a week which has been dominated by the resignation of coach Ricki Herbert and a loss to the Newcastle Jets on Wednesday night.They are rooted in bottom place on 21 points while the Heart are sixth with 27 points, including a 3-1 win over Sydney at AAMI Park in the last round."It's been the most turbulent week of my life," Greenacre said."There has been a mixture of emotions - sadness, excitement, a real roller-coaster. It's taken me out of my comfort zone and that will probably make me stronger in the long term."Greenacre said he and the players were desperate to lift themselves from the bottom of the table."Confidence is low at times when you're at the bottom. You're looking for things to happen. You don't want to finish last in any competition."The players have their pride to play for and I've certainly got my pride. We're raring to go. It's a big game for us. We want to put the loss to Newcastle behind us and the best way to do that is to have another game straight away."If pride's not enough motivation, Greenacre warns that some players' futures with the Phoenix are at stake."They are playing for their contracts for next year so they need to go out there and give it everything they've got and prove to the owners that they are worthy of another contract. Livelihoods could be on the line."The Phoenix beat Melbourne 3-2 when they last played in January and Greenacre hoped that would be a good omen.He said the Phoenix would need to keep a particularly close eye on in-form striker Eli Babalj, midfielders Matt Thompson and Nick Kalmar and defender Simon Colosimo.It is Wellington's second A-League match in Dunedin's covered Forsyth Barr stadium, having beaten the champion Brisbane Roar 2-0 last season at the venue.