2018 AFC Champions League, Group Stage
  • Leroy George (26', 37')
  • Rhys Williams (54')
  • Mislav Orsic (24', 51')
  • Richard Windbichler (34')

Melbourne Victory battle to 3-3 draw vs. Ulsan Hyundai in ACL

Melbourne Victory celebrate Leroy George's goal against Ulsan Hyundai Getty

Melbourne Victory have shown their resilience amid trying times by coming from behind three times in a 3-3 draw with Ulsan Hyundai in the Asian Champions League.

Leroy George's double and Rhys Williams' header earned Victory a point against the South Korean visitors in their ACL opener in Melbourne, snapping a three-game losing streak for Kevin Muscat's team. Just 5,127 attended the A-League's first continental clash of the season.

And while the result won't help Victory progress out of their imposing ACL group, their performance yielded a Tuesday night goal-fest.

Ulsan, playing ahead of their season kick-off on March 1, retreated for the opening 20 minutes but then snatched the lead.

Mislav Orsic, their Croatian star, sent a free kick in the bottom corner from all of 30 metres, defying an outstretched Lawrence Thomas.

Victory found resolve after going behind, with George tapping in from Besart Berisha's shot on the turn just two minutes later.

On 34 minutes, another set piece did for Victory when Austrian centre-back Richard Windbichler nodded in Orsic's corner at the near post.

Again, Victory needed just a couple of minutes to be back on terms, and again, it was George. The Dutch winger cut in from the left and played a fine one-two with Berisha before side-footing home with power past Kim Yong-dae.

Half-time brought blessed relief to anyone with high blood pressure after four goals in 13 minutes. But Orsic was at it again on 51 minutes, scoring the night's best effort for his second, stepping around Terry Antonis and curling home from outside the box.

Despite going behind a third time, Victory always looked like finding another response. It came when Williams snuck behind the sleeping Ulsan defence to nod home George's free kick from close range.

Substitute Kenny Athiu was prominent as Victory made the running for the night's seventh goal, but it never came.

It was the first time in three attempts that Victory have failed to win when given a home match to start their ACL campaign.

Given stern tests against Chinese Super League club Shanghai SIPG and Japanese champions Kawasaki Frontale await, Victory will need to step up if they're to reach the round of 16 in Asia.

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