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Mar 22, 2013

Aloisi all Heart ahead of Roar clash

These days Melbourne Heart coach John Aloisi needs all the good news that he can get.

And while many may find it hard to believe, Aloisi reckons lining up against an equally desperate Roar in Brisbane on Sunday presents just that.

Playing away should be the last thing Aloisi would want considering their woeful road record.

The Heart have flat-lined away from home this season - remarkably their last win outside Melbourne was in December 2011.

Throw in a three-match regular season losing run and four unavailable players - including injured Brazilian playmaker Fred - and Aloisi should not be a happy chappy.

However, the Heart mentor reckons if they are going to launch an unlikely finals run it is going to be against A-League defending champions the Roar.

The Heart are unbeaten in their last five matches against Brisbane including 4-1 and 3-2 victories this season - albeit at AAMI Park.

That's enough for Aloisi to cling to as the Heart (9th; 27pts) look to bag a top six spot with two regular season matches left.

"We've worked on the way Brisbane play a little bit and we seem to match up really well against them," he said.

"It suits us to play against Brisbane, so that gives us confidence to go up there and put in a good performance."

If they win both their games they could finish fifth - or they could finish dead last if their abysmal run continues.

But Aloisi is a glass half full kind of guy.

"We don't want to look back and say 'well we can finish last'," he said.

"We want to look back and say we've finished fifth. But it's important that we get good results these last two games - that's the most important thing.

"We still think that we can make finals and we still believe that we can go to Brisbane and win and I think that's important that the players believe that."

That will be easier said than done without key quartet Simon Colosimo (ban), Fred (quad), Jonatan Germano (hamstring) and Patrick Gerhardt (international duty for Liberia).

While looking to match David Vrankovic with Jamie Coyne in central defence, Aloisi must also decide whether to link Marcel Meeuwis, Jason Hoffman or Nick Kalmar with Matt Thompson in midfield.

"We still think that we have a good enough 11 to go out there and win," Aloisi said.

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