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AFC Champions League

Muangthong United - Brisbane Roar Preview

04:45 GMT+3 26/04/2017
Xisco Muangthong United Nicholas D'Agostino Brisbane Roar AFC Champions League
The undermanned A-League side are prioritising their semi-final on Sunday but need at least a draw in Thailand to have a hope of ACL progression

Brisbane Roar coach John Aloisi has again voiced his frustration over Football Federation Australia's (FFA) scheduling around AFC Champions League (ACL) matches ahead of Wednesday's clash with Muangthong United.

Speaking in Thailand on Tuesday, Aloisi claimed he has left a raft of senior players such as Jamie Maclaren and Jade North in Australia because Roar have "got more of an opportunity of winning something in the A-League" than the ACL.

Injuries to Matt McKay and Jack Hingert, plus suspensions to Avram Papadopoulos and Corey Brown, mean Brisbane will be particularly undermanned in defence.

With an A-League semi-final coming up on Sunday against Melbourne Victory, Aloisi is set to name an inexperienced starting XI including the likes of Nick D'Agostino, Cameron Crestani, Dane Ingham and Kye Rowles, who have all stepped up in the ACL this season.

Victory hope to exploit tired Roar

Despite FFA's recent announcement that they will include split rounds for the A-League next season whenever there are ACL matchdays in consecutive weeks, Aloisi didn't miss an opportunity to underline how his team has been hurt by scheduling since their continental duties began.

Brisbane played nine games in 32 days earlier in the season.

FFA held Roar's elimination final against Western Sydney Wanderers on Friday night to allow for both club's ACL away trips this week, with Brisbane triumphing following a penalty shootout.

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"We still play in a league in which the federation hasn't given us the best opportunity to do as well as we would like to in the Champions League," Aloisi told ESPN FC.

"When we played Muangthong in Brisbane, we played on the Saturday, and again on the Tuesday, because that was our schedule, and they didn't change the game for us.

"At the moment, I have to think about the competitions that we're in and where it's going to be worthwhile trying to achieve our goal of winning something.

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"We've currently got more of an opportunity of winning something in the A-League.

"It doesn't mean that we're taking this game for granted, or lightly. We still want to play our football, and hopefully progress but, at the moment, our full strength side will play on Sunday in Melbourne."

Muangthong visited Ratchaburi on Saturday and drew 1-1 to stay top of the Thai League table.

History beckons for Muangthong

The Thai champions have not lost in Group E, topping the standings with two matchdays remaining, and will wrap up qualification for the Round of 16 with a win over Brisbane.

The previous meeting between the two sides finished scoreless in Brisbane in February.

Despite sitting fourth, Roar remain in contention to progress from Group E but need at least a draw in Thailand to have a realistic shot when they host Ulsan in May.