In-form Melbourne Victory striker Archie Thompson has lavished praise on the man management skills of new boss Jim Magilton, predicting the Northern Irishman can help the talented Victory squad fulfil their enormous potential.
Magilton has only been in the job for just over a week, presiding over the 1-1 draw with Adelaide. But Thompson, who has seen his fair share of coaches over the years, is already impressed with the way he is motivating the troops.
"I think Jim is a great manager. He's had the experience of coaching some big clubs in the championship, QPR and Ipswich Town. He's just a good manager, the way he speaks to players," Thompson said.
"He just looks like that one who can look at a player and say 'I need to talk to this player this way' or 'I need to manage that player that way.' It's not about how much you know about the game, it's about how you manage the players. I think he's really good like that."
Thompson said Magilton's energetic approach to his short-term role has had an immediate effect and the level of enthusiasm around the club has lifted noticeably.
"The atmosphere has been better the last week, week and a half. It was disappointing we couldn't get the three points against Adelaide but the pleasing thing is that we are starting to play some good football. Our first half was probably the best we've played this year," he said.
Thompson, Magilton and co face a tough ask this week with a trip to Perth to play the Glory.
Victory have lost six of their past seven matches across the Nullarbor and Thompson admits that it will be a huge test for a side looking to get back on the winners' list.
"It's the old cliche, we just have to take it into the whole game. We'll keep trying and Jimmy has brought a new sort of hype to the team, so we're excited to travel to Perth. We've never travelled well there, so it will be great to get three points there," he said.
"I don't think many teams travel well there. If I knew what was wrong, we probably wouldn't be losing most times when we do travel. There's a good vibe and this is probably the most confident we have been going to Perth."
Thompson thinks a win on Sunday in Perth could provide a spark for his side, allowing them to extricate themselves from the mid-table scrap they find themselves in and to make a concerted charge towards the finals.
"We haven't had the luxury of having a couple of wins on the trot. If we do that we put ourselves in a good finals position. That's all that the main thing is, is to make finals and anything can happen from there," he said.
"We don't want to be giving anymore points away, and if we put three, four or five wins together you are right up there. It's so close and it's a matter of us doing that."
"But I looked at the statistics and we've led in eight or nine games 1-0 and we've faded away. If we continue to play that well from start to finish than anything is possible."