McGree on Tuesday was suspended from internationals until April next year after an incident involving a Cambodian woman, while he was captaining Australia’s under-23 side in March. But the attacking midfielder shrugged off the furore with an influential display before a 12,198-strong crowd at Coopers Stadium.
McGree’s opener came after a diagonal charge from teammate Ryan Strain, which set-up Kristian Ospeth. The Norwegian striker swung a right-footed shot, which rolled into the far post. The ball rebounded to the tracking McGree, who deftly controlled with his body and tapped-in from a metre.
The goal was deserved for Adelaide, who made the running as Reds recruit James Troisi orchestrated play from midfield against his former club.
Troisi was industrious, striker Ospeth was creative up-front and Adelaide’s defence held firm until Victory substitutes Elvis Kamsoba and Robbie Kruse provided a brief second-half spark.
Kruse expertly created Toivonen’s 61st minute goal, winning a duel with Strain and launching a left-footer across the goal-face to his captain, whose first- timer thumped into the net.
But Victory’s joy was as short-lived as possible.
Adelaide’s Maria replied in the next minute – after a chain of possession from the re-start, he raced forward and darted into the box, with his low left-footer clipping Victory’s diving Thomas Deng en route to the net.
McGree sealed Adelaide’s fourth win of the season in the 68th minute, emerging in possession from a tangle with Tim Hoogland, cutting towards goal and firing from seven metres.