Kurz excited over Adelaide A-League return

Anna Harrington
Melbourne Victory coach Marco Kurz is looking forward to facing his former A-League team in Adelaide

Melbourne Victory coach Marco Kurz says returning to Coopers Stadium for the first time in the A-League since leaving Adelaide United will be a special occasion.

Kurz coached the Reds for two seasons from 2017-2019 including leading the club to FFA Cup glory last year, before joining Victory this year.

"For me, it's a special game. But not the game that's special - more the place, more Adelaide," Kurz said.

"I think everyone understands it. It's human because it was the first step out of Europe for me to go to Adelaide. We felt very comfortable there; we had a fantastic time as a person and as a coach as well.

"But now I am really proud to be the coach of Victory. I have changed colours and, tomorrow, I am the blue and white one and I will want to win the game."

Kurz said the reception he received from Adelaide fans wasn't important, and he was focused on earning a desperately needed three points - with Victory garnering just five points from their first six games.

"We have tomorrow a big chance in a big game in front of a big crowd to get a good result," he said.

"And that's our clear goal, to get the three points."

Kurz will face his successor at Adelaide, Gertjan Verbeek, who has also led the Reds to FFA Cup glory - something Kurz said was important to his former side's three-game winning streak.

"You can see how important it is to play a successful FFA Cup season because they started not really (well) with the results," Kurz said.

"But they felt confident after the Cup win and they've got the results now in the last game.

"What do I expect? I know (Verbeek) - he plays always offensive, very hard against the man and one of their strengths are (their) transition (game) and we have to control them.

"And it's good to have him here because I think he can give a good input for Australian soccer."

Victory will welcome back Andrew Nabbout from injury, while Tim Hoogland might earn his first A-League minutes after recovering from a quad issue. Thomas Deng, Storm Roux, Kenny Athiu and Elvis Kamsoba have all returned from international duty.

Goalscoring revelation Al Hassan Toure is back from the Olyroos for the Reds, while recruit James Troisi will face Victory for the first time since joining their rival.

STATS THAT MATTER:

* Adelaide have conceded only one second-half goal this season - fewer than any other team

* Riley McGree has been involved directly in five of Adelaide's past seven goals - scoring four and assisting one

* Victory have conceded three goals from outside the box this season, more than any other team.

Stats provided by Opta