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Melbourne derbies given breathing space

Melbourne Victory veteran Leigh Broxham is poised to play his 200th match this weekend
Canberra Olympic and Sydney FC will meet in their FFA Cup semi-final on October 19, with the Melbourne derby semi-final on October 25
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Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat has his wish for breathing space between the two Melbourne derbies next month, with their FFA Cup meeting scheduled for October 25.

Cup holders Victory and cross-town rivals Melbourne City will meet in the first all-A-League cup derby at AAMI Park just 10 days after their round two A-League meeting at Etihad Stadium.

Canberra Olympic and Sydney FC will play the first semi-final on October 19, with their meeting set down for Viking Park in Wanniassa.

In giving Canberra the earlier fixture, FFA has decided against holding two derbies within four days.

After winning through to the last four of the competition on Tuesday against Bentleigh Greens, Muscat said holding two derbies too closely together would reduce their attendance and impact.

Muscat told AAP the rivalry is "just going to grow and grow and grow".

"It will continue to intensify the more games that are played. We're blessed already that this year there will be an extra one," he said.

"As a code we're blessed we've got something here that no one else can replicate - a true, pure cup competition."

The timing might be seen to slightly disadvantage City, which must back up to play Adelaide United three days later at the same venue.

Victory don't have to play again until the following Monday, when Wellington Phoenix visit for their annual match on the eve of Melbourne Cup day.

City coach John van 't Schip said he had no qualms with the fixture.

"We just focus on the next game. I'm okay with whatever they say," he told AAP.

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