JVS defiant as pressure mounts on City

John van ‘t Schip has acknowledged his position as Melbourne City FC coach is likely to be under threat but has vowed to fight to ‘the end’, declaring no player is assured of their place against Brisbane Roar FC on Sunday.

Van’t Schip’s team went down 5-1 away to Wellington Phoenix on Sunday, their heaviest defeat yet in a season that has so far failed to match the sky-high expectations brought about by Manchester City’s high-profile takeover of the club.

This weekend they host Brisbane Roar FC at AAMI Park, with the resurgent champions unbeaten in two matches under new interim coach Frans Thijssen.

“The pressure is there,” Van ‘t Schip told reporters on Friday.

“These are the moments we have to step up and I’m the first one (who has to). I’m not going to hide. I know this is a situation that’s delicate. 

“We know how things work in football. Until the end, I’m the first one who’s going to be fighting for … better results.” 

Asked if his future as coach has been talked about behind the scenes at City, the Dutchman offered a bullish response.

“I don’t know, maybe you know? You write about it, you’ve probably heard more than I did. You should ask the question yourself.

“I have focused on my sessions here, that’s the only thing I can do. That’s my job, (it’s) not my job to concern (myself with) what kind of discussions are happening behind my back. I know how football works.”

City have the fit-again duo of defender Connor Chapman and midfielder Massimo Murdocca available this weekend, with Van’t Schip confirming both are in selection contention among what could be a host of changes to the underperforming first team.

“Sunday is a totally new chance and a new game,” he said.

“I told the players in the beginning of the week that everybody’s in for their chance again. 

“Players that I think are showing that they are deserving to play, they will be play. Other players that had a lot of chances and I think maybe need to be changed, they will be changed and other players will get a chance.”

City defeated Roar 3-1 away from home in Round 5 to record their only victory of the campaign to date. Since then the title-holders have sacked Mike Mulvey and brought in Thijssen, who has overseen a 1-1 draw at home to Perth Glory and a 1-0 win away to Western Sydney.

“They’ve showed they are on the way back,” Van ‘t Schip said when asked about Brisbane’s form.

“They’re still a team that play a style of football that I think is one of the best in the A-League. It’s going to be a tough game.”

As for his compatriot and counterpart Thijssen, Van Schip said: “I wish him all the best in the Hyundai A-League, except not this Sunday.”