Melbourne Victory defender Thomas Deng says he is happy the squad has now settled after a disruptive start to the season.
Victory take on Adelaide United at Etihad Stadium on Friday night and will be looking to get their first home win this season on the board.
The Big V sit sixth after two away wins against Perth Glory and Wellington Phoenix.
Victory have had a number of rotations in their squad as internationals James Troisi and Mark Milligan have been involved with the Socceroos and Kosta Barbarouses with the All Whites.
Victory’s only key outs are James Donachie and Mitch Austin with injury as they welcome back Milligan against the Reds.
“We now have a more settled squad with the Socceroos boys back in with Millsy as well and I hope we can pick up some points,” Deng told FourFourTwo.
“Millsy’s a great player, his leadership is probably his greatest asset for us. He’s always encouraging us, especially helping us young boys out, so it’ll be great to have him on the field against Adelaide.
“It’s always good when we have a more settled squad and it’s better for the team. For the past few weeks we’ve had boys go and come away, so it’s been hard.”
It was also announced on Wednesday that Victory would be facing Kawasaki Frontale and Ulsan Hyundai in the AFC Champions League (ACL) with the final opponent yet to be determined.
Victory are far from where they are expected to be coming to the end of 2017 and have every reason to feel relieved after turning a two-goal deficit into a 3-2 win over Wellington last week.
Deng admitted it would be important to get some momentum before the ACL begins.
“It’ll be good to get some wins before we start the ACL, especially because it’s going to be a tough schedule, so hopefully we can pick up some points,” he said.
“It’s always a big competition, I was involved with it two years ago when I was here. I didn’t really get to play much, but I hope I’m more involved this time and get some good minutes.
“I don’t think the boys are really panicking, it’s just a few things we need to get right as a group and individually as well. Once we fix those things, I think we’ll start getting the results we need. The main thing is to stay positive.
“I think the Adelaide game is going to be a great game especially after that result against Wellington away.”
The centre-back has so far played eight games this season for Victory after a valuable experience on loan to Dutch outfit Jong PSV.
He conceded he was “pretty happy” with himself so far this season.
“The most important thing is to perform well as a group and also improving every week,” Deng said.
“My experience overseas was a tough one, it forced me to mature as a player and also as a person. Now I learnt a lot over there, I’m more switched on tactically and technically I’ve improved.”