Nix no pushover: Garcia


Melbourne Heart FC midfielder Richard Garcia has reiterated the Club’s round two fixture against Wellington Phoenix is no easy assignment

Former Hull City midfielder Richard Garcia has adjusted quickly to life at Melbourne Heart FC, a new role and to A-League football, but it is consistency the Club’s number 11 is striving for.

On debut against Melbourne Victory, Garcia impressed with his ferocious attack on the ball as he chased and hounded Victory-s influential South American duo of Gui Finkler and Marcos Flores in midfield.

A player who crafted his career as an attacking and wide midfielder, Garcia looked at home deeper as a number six, shielding his defence in a holding role.

“I-m enjoying it and growing into it,” Garcia said of his new responsibility.

“Hopefully I can chip in with a few goals, I don-t want to take that out of my game completely, but I-m enjoying that little bit deeper role and helping out defenders.

“It-s not something I usually do; defend, but it-s a challenge for me which I enjoy.”

The 31-year-old-s attacking desire was still evident as he flashed a shot over the bar in the first five minutes, setting the tone for Heart to pepper Victory-s goal throughout the 90 minutes.

And it was, of course, Garcia-s lofted chip in the 14th minute, albeit meant for Dylan Macallister, which found David Williams unmarked at the back post to fire home to give Heart the early advantage.

But while Heart-s opening win has bred confidence in the Heart camp, Garcia believes it will mean little if the side emerges from Sunday-s match against a Wellington Phoenix, who will be missing its coach and seven players on international duty, without three points.

“It-s great to get off to winning ways, but it-s about being consistent and taking that form into the next game,” Garcia said.

“I think we have to approach the game as though it’s a normal game, I think the players that come in [for Phoenix] will be double eager to impress to hold their positions, so it-s going to be a tough game and that-s what we-re expecting.

“I watched glimpses of [Wellington-s game against Sydney FC] and they looked like a very hard working physical team and it-s going to be a tough game for us to deal with; we have to make sure we continue the form that we showed against Victory.

“We-ve got to give them as much respect as we can and play like we did against Victory and get those three points.

“It-s such a tight league that you have to be consistent with your performances and that-s what we-ll concentrate on.”