Toivonen’s Victory A-League debut on hold

Melbourne Victory striker Ola Toivonen has scored more than 100 top-flight goals in Europe.Melbourne Victory are keen to move on from their A-League derby defeat but will have to do so without Ola Toivonen, who is set for a stint on the sidelines.
苏州夜生活

The Swedish striker will be unavailable for Sunday’s clash with Perth Glory due to a calf injury and it remains unclear when he will make his A-League debut.

Toivonen was unveiled to great fanfare by Victory in the off-season, joining Japanese superstar Keisuke Honda as one of two signings to have scored at the World Cup.

While Honda scored on debut in Saturday night’s derby loss to Melbourne City, Toivonen had to sit the match out after being injured at training.

The 32-year-old was missing from training on Wednesday morning, with Storm Roux confirming the towering forward was in the hands of the club’s medical staff for the time being.

“He’s resting and focusing on his rehab … it’s about him week to week getting assessed,” he said.

“When it happened everyone feared for the worst. It turned out it’s not as bad as we thought.

“Hopefully we have him back soon. It’s a long season. It’s only round two.”

Victory find themselves as one of just two first-round losers after the derby, having lost control of their clash with City after a VAR-awarded penalty.

City equalised from the contentious decision — which A-League chief Greg O’Rourke admitted was wrong — and grabbed the points through a late Riley McGree winner.

Roux said the penalty decision was “hard to take” but players and fans needed to accept the reality that the video assistant referee was here to stay.

“We’ve got to move on. It’s part of the game now,” he said.

“Personally, I like the old style where it’s just the ref. There’s too much involved now.

“But it’s not up to me … we’ve got to move on and focus on Glory.”

The Marvel Stadium clash was the high point of an electric opening round of the competition, with every home club reporting a lift in attendance, and where every team scored a round one goal for the first time in A-League history.

Victory return to AAMI Park for the visit of Tony Popovic’s Perth, with a rare Sunday 7pm AEDT kick-off for the powerhouse club.

Victory’s W-League side play Adelaide United at 4:15pm in a curtain-raiser.