Victory claim first win at home

Melbourne Victory have claimed their maiden win at their new home AAMI Park in emphatic fashion, crushing the previously unbeaten Brisbane Roar 3-0 on Sunday afternoon.

Melbourne Victory have claimed their maiden win at their new home AAMI Park in emphatic fashion, crushing the previously unbeaten Brisbane Roar 3-0 on Sunday afternoon.

The Roar had started the season with eight points from four matches and had not conceded a goal, with former Victory goalkeeper Michael Theoklitos and his defence in good touch at the back.

So solid in fact had Theoklitos been following his return from a spell in Europe that he had set a new Australian record of 876 minutes without conceding, smashing the previous mark of 790 held by Jeff Olver.

But two mistakes in a five-minute spell early in the second half made for unpleasant viewing for Roar coach Ange Postecoglou, with firstly Tom Pondeljak and then Ricardinho capitalising to make it 2-0 approaching the hour.

And with just under 20 minutes remaining Grant Brebner made sure of all three points in front of 13,792 fans, lifting the Victory to fourth on the Hyundai A-League ladder with eight points, ahead of the Roar on goal difference thanks to the big win.

Postecoglou was forced into an early reshuffle when Henrique landed heavily after a collision with Victory skipper Kevin Muscat, the Brazilian suffering a suspected elbow fracture that forced him off in the sixth minute in favour of Kosta Barbarouses.

A free kick from Carlos Hernandez after 10 minutes was eventually cleared by the visitors but less than convincingly and eight minutes later the Costa Rican's free kick was zeroing in on the Brisbane goal a foot below the bar until tipped onto the woodwork by a diving Theoklitos.

The Roar weren't without their own chances either and it was only the desperate intervention of Rody Vargas that stopped Reinaldo meeting Shane Stefanutto's volleyed cross in the heart of the box in the 27th minute.

Minutes before the break Thomas Broich curled the ball into the box but it eluded two of his team-mates and was eventually picked up by Michael Petkovic after an initial fumble while Hernandez and Mate Dugandzic were involved just before the whistle but Geoff Kellaway's header was off target.

Victory coach Ernie Merrick made two changes at half-time with Billy Celeski replacing Dugandzic and Pondeljak coming on for Kellaway and within minutes the introduction of Pondeljak had paid dividends.

A poor pass from Luke DeVere to Erik Paartalu gifted Pondeljak possession just outside the box and after taking time to settle and then shaping to shoot to the right the veteran pulled his shot hard across goal and into the left corner of Theoklitos' goal.

Soon after Ricardinho beat one defender but while his next touch was too heavy as he reached the box, DeVere's hesitancy as he tried to shield the ball for Theoklitos proved costly as Ricardinho slid between DeVere's legs to poke home his first goal for the club.

Brebner then capped off the triumph in trademark fashion, smashing home the goal from just outside the box after Hernandez and Ricardinho had vainly attempted a one-two exchange of passes.

Melbourne Victory 3 (Pondeljak 51, Ricardinho 56, Brebner 71) Brisbane Roar 0