‘What else is there to win?’: Berisha’s cryptic statement on future
MELBOURNE Victory striker Besart Berisha has offered a coy response to questions about his future at the club.
Berisha signed a one-year contract extension with the Victory in December 2017.
But after winning his fourth A-League grand final on Saturday night, the Victory star offered a cryptic response to a question about his future.
"I mean, I ask you guys this question now - what else is (there) to win in A-League for me?" Berisha said to reporters post-match.
The striker had a tough 2017/18 season at times, when he struggled for goal scoring form.
Berisha's issues at times somewhat mirrored his team's patchy performance, with coach Kevin Muscat also under pressure at times.
"This year was a very special year because we got tested really difficult moments in every aspect of the game," Berisha said.
"We missed players - red cards, international, champions league, FFA Cup, A-League, it's been an up and down season - injuries.
"You know, it was an unbelievable difficult season and we stayed strong, we stayed hard and really we stayed tall.
"We stick together and in the end, to win this by far is one of the special year(s) and toughest year I had to win this, it's extremely very special."
Saturday night's 1-0 win over Newcastle was the first time Berisha failed to score in a grand final.
But the striker wasn't fazed post-match.
"Believe me, it feels special. Not because I didn't score but because it's just I'm exhausted you know," he said.
"I'm working so hard the last seven years and today, this year was so hard, it didn't matter to me at all I didn't score. It mattered to me that I helped the team being a part of this moment because it was really special.
"Believe me, as a football player, you don't want to go have this season, you don't want to go through this season but we did and we did like men and we deserve the trophy."
Berisha said the Victory had started to believe they could win this year's championship after beating Adelaide in their elimination final.
"To be honest after Adelaide. I could feel it after Adelaide that there is going on in the group this belief that we went through this season such a tough time but the boys keep getting up," he said.
"We want to keep working hard and believe and that is magical because if you have this team who can produce that after a difficult season like this, you just can win.
"And we used that motivation to come here and then own this trophy because I believe all the boys was before this week feeling good and I said to them maybe they feeling good, we had this momentum going on and I had a good feeling."
Berisha said having to win the championship the hard way - via an elimination final against Adelaide, and away wins over Sydney and Newcastle - after being tested with "difficult moments" - made the accomplishment even more special.
"I've personally been in many teams, and many good teams and this year we had a team with a great mentality," he said.
"We stick together, we believe and this is why we deserve this even more than ever I played in a grand final."
Looking back on his A-League career so far, Berisha - who joked he would have to "make space" for his latest medal - said he hadn't known what to expect but had ultimately conquered the league.
"To be really honest when I came to Australia I didn't know what to expect," he said.
"I came here to work hard, to show myself who I am.
"I have to make it a little bit fun but you know, when I came to Brisbane I conquered Brisbane, when I came to Melbourne I conquered Australia. So it's four trophies."