Melbourne's magnificent seven

Melbourne has secured its seventh-straight win over Adelaide and its second for the season with goals from Nick Ward and Grant Brebner enough for Victory to claim a 2-0 win at Hindmarsh Stadium.

Melbourne has secured its seventh-straight win over Adelaide and its second for the season with goals from Nick Ward and Grant Brebner enough for Victory to claim a 2-0 win at Hindmarsh Stadium.

While there was an element of luck attached to the opening goal, with Ward looping a cross into the net just six minutes in, the second goal from Brebner in the 90th minute was nothing more than the visitors deserved after an assured performance. The win is the club's second from its three away games this season and it moves Melbourne to nine points from its seven matches.

Coach Ernie Merrick opted for a different set-up at both ends of the park, with Kevin Muscat included alongside Rody Vargas, while Adrian Leijer pushed up the field to mark Lucas Pantelis. Archie Thompson was left alone up front with wide support from Tom Pondeljak and Ward.

The deployment of Ward into a more advanced role paid dividends just six minutes in, albeit with a bit of fortune attached. Leijer released him down the right and outpacing Mark Rudan, Ward delivered a cross which turned into a shot. Eugene Galekovic was completely caught out, the ball snuck in at the near post and Melbourne had the lead.

It gave Melbourne the confidence to play its best football in a few weeks, with smooth passing and quick movement a hallmark of an opening half hour which could have yielded another goal had one of Pondeljak (twice), Thompson or Carlos Hernandez hit the target.

Adelaide's best chance of the first half fell to an off-side Lloyd Owusu, who hit the post, while Glen Moss was called on twice just before half time to defy headers from Reds players, the first from Rudan and the second from Adam Hughes.

Adelaide came out with intent after the break, but its attacking play came to little, with Melbourne enjoying the space on the counter-attack. Hernandez unleashed a powerful shot which forced Galekovic to save, while on the hour, Ward hammered a shot which again forced a stop from the Adelaide custodian.

Melbourne's defence, in particular Matthew Kemp and Rody Vargas, were doing an excellent job with Moss largely untroubled by Adelaide's strike force which had Cristiano added to it. Travis Dodd shot over the top, as Melbourne replaced Ward with Brebner.

However, the visitors continued to attack, with Thompson's reflex shot deflected over by Galekovic 15 minutes from time before Hernandez misfired wildly. Looking for its first points against Melbourne since the 2007/08 season, Adelaide threw everything forward in the final ten minutes.

But it was Melbourne which secured the second goal when Thompson picked the pocket of Cassio, ran the byline, hammered in a cross which rebounded to Brebner, who couldn't miss

Adelaide United 0 Melbourne Victory 2 (Ward 6, Brebner 90) Crowd: 15,058 at Hindmarsh Stadium Friday, September 18, 2009 Referee: Strebre Delovski

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