Wellington Phoenix’s poor run of form continued on Saturday night as they fell 2-0 to Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park.
The result continues Wellington’s struggles in Melbourne, where the club is still yet to win a game and dampened the celebrations of coach Riki Herbert who became the most capped A-League manager in his 152nd match.
The match got off to a poor start with both teams struggling to find their feet early on despite Benjamin Totori and Marco Rojas looking dangerous for Wellington and Victory respectively.
Melbourne Victory had a good chance in the 21st minute after Archie Thompson, Marcos Flores and Rojas linked up well only for Rojas to volley wide.
Wellington looked dangerous with Jeremy Brockie looking keen for a goal but they couldn’t produce many real chances as they tested the Victory defense in the air.
It took half an hour for Wellington to have their first real chance and it was through Stein Huysegems whose left footed shot was well dealt with by Nathan Coe.
Victory were also not creating as many chances as they should have but in the 42nd minute they finally broke through as Rojas sent in a cross for Flores who was able to poke home in a crowded penalty area to give the hosts a 1-0 half-time lead.
Just six minutes in to the second half the hosts doubled their lead as Rojas set up Adrian Leijr whose shot came back off the post for Rojas to score.
Flores stepped up to the plate in the absence of Gui Finkler regularly being the outlet for Melbourne Victory who very nearly added a third through Mark Milligan who saw his shot shave the post on the way out.
Milligan continued to try and in the 66th minute sent in a good curling strike from the edge of the area that went narrowly wide.
Wellington pushed late and should have pulled one back in the 80th minute as Brockie was left free and volleyed wide when it seemed easier to score.
In the 86th minute Cameron Lindsay forced a save out of Coe before another header from Brockie also went close but the result was never in doubt as Melbourne Victory managed a solid 2-0 victory.