Round 1 preview: Victory v City

Melbourne Victory begins its Hyundai A-League campaign with a derby clash against City at Marvel Stadium on Saturday.

Summary

After producing some fine results in pre-season friendlies, a revamped Victory begins its league season under Marco Kurz.

Including the arrival of Kurz, Victory has gone through off-season changes, including making several signings.

Jakob Poulsen, Tim Hoogland, Migjen Basha and Kristijan Dobras have joined the club, while Adama Traore, Robbie Kruse and Andrew Nabbout returned to Victory.

Victory enjoyed fine results in pre-season, including wins over Hyundai A-League opposition in Western United and Perth Glory.

Ola Toivonen, named captain this season after an excellent first campaign with Victory, has starred, having scored 15 league goals in 2018/19.

The Swedish forward netted in five of Victory's six pre-season games, scoring seven goals.

Victory is in competitive action for the first time since August, when it suffered an extra-time loss to the Newcastle Jets in the FFA Cup.

It has won 12 of the previous 28 Hyundai A-League derbies against City, drawing seven and losing nine.

Player in focus

Opta Widget: Toivonen 1819

What they said

"Since the Newcastle game, we've picked it up every week, we've taken it to a new level and I don't think we've lost since the FFA Cup game which is always good, you need that confidence going into the first round, especially in a derby game. It's important to have that momentum and I feel like we've gained a lot of it in pre-season so it's good." – Victory attacker Nabbout.

Last time

Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Round 20
Melbourne Victory 1-1 City
Saturday, February 23, 2019
Marvel Stadium, Melbourne

Reduced to 10 men after Georg Niedermeier's 15th-minute red card, Victory battled hard to a draw in the final derby of last season.

Kosta Barbarouses' second-half goal cancelled out Jamie Maclaren's penalty to earn Victory its point.

Opta Widget: Last time

As it stands

Opta Widget: HAL table

Head to head

Round 20, 2018/19: Victory 1-1 City at Marvel Stadium
Round 9, 2018/19: City 1-1 Victory at AAMI Park
Round 1, 2018/19: Victory 1-2 City at Marvel Stadium
Round 22, 2017/18: City 1-2 Victory at AAMI Park
Round 12, 2017/18: City 0-1 Victory at AAMI Park

Opta Widget: H2H

Match details

Melbourne Victory v City
Marvel Stadium, Melbourne
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Kick-off: 7.30pm AEDT

Melbourne Victory squad: 2.Storm ROUX, 3.Corey BROWN, 4.James DONACHIE, 5.Tim HOOGLAND, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 8.Jakob POULSEN, 9.Andrew NABBOUT, 11.Ola TOIVONEN (c), 14.Thomas DENG, 16.Josh HOPE, 17.Elvis KAMSOBA, 18.Migjen BASHA, 19.Ben CARRIGAN, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 21.Adama TRAORE, 22.Kristijan DOBRAS, 24.Anthony LESIOTIS, 25.Brandon LAUTON, 26.Jay BARNETT, 30.Matthew SUTTON (gk)
**2-4 to be omitted**

Ins: N/A
Outs: N/A
Unavailable: 1.Matt ACTON (shoulder), 7.Kenny ATHIU (international duty), 10.Robbie KRUSE (hamstring), 13.Birkan KIRDAR (international duty)

Jakob Poulsen Squad