NPL preview: Ballarat v Victory

Melbourne Victory looks to build on its Derby win when it makes the trip to Ballarat City in the NPL2 West on Saturday.

Summary

Victory recorded a thrilling 3-2 win over City in Round 16, returning to winning ways and extending its unbeaten run to three matches.

Stefan Ristic scored a late brace for Victory, while Nuh Sehavdic was back on the scoresheet for the first time since returning from a knee injury.

Ristic, 18, has netted braces in two of the past three games to move onto four goals this season.

Sehavdic, 19, was back on the scoresheet, while the forward also set up one of Ristic's efforts, with Liston Diaz coming off the bench to tee up the midfielder's winner.

Victory is eighth in the NPL2 West as it prepares for its first away game of the month.

Ballarat is 10th on the table and suffered a 4-0 loss to Victory when the teams met in the opening round.

Yazid Said scored a brace in that game, to go with goals from Jack Palazzolo and Diaz.

Head coach Gareth Naven's pre-match thoughts

"I'd like to think that our performance was important in the second half and the players know what it looks like and it's about us playing against Ballarat and repeating that performance. That's the main focus for our players to get better at doing that. It's important that we try and do that against Ballarat this weekend and the contribution of our players (off the bench) from last week – (Jack) Morton, Diaz and (Daniel) Aye, impacted our game and it shows how important those players are that come into the game late and the value they have and I think they did a really good job for us."

This week

NPL2 West 2019 Round 17
Ballarat City v Melbourne Victory
Saturday, June 15, 4.00pm AEST
Morshead Park Stadium, Ballarat

U20 NPL2 West 2019 Round 17
Ballarat City v Melbourne Victory
Saturday, June 15, 2.00pm AEST
Morshead Park Stadium, Ballarat

U18 NPL West 2019 Round 16
Melbourne Victory v Moreland Zebras
Sunday, June 16, 10.30am AEST
Partridge Street Reserve, Melbourne

U15 NPL West 2019 Round 16
Melbourne Victory v Moreland Zebras
Sunday, June 16, 9.00am AEST
Partridge Street Reserve, Melbourne

Last week

NPL2 West: Victory 3 (Sehavdic 59', Ristic 71'/83') City 2
U20 NPL2 West: Victory 4 (Paneras 7'/26', Velupillay 61', Hamakiotis 69') City 3