melbournevictory.com.au is taking a look back at some of the players that have featured for the club over the past 15 years. Today, we profile Tom Pondeljak.
Tom Pondeljak arrived at Melbourne Victory in February 2008 with a distinguished record in both the National Soccer League and Hyundai A-League.
Pondeljak had three NSL titles, one with each of Melbourne Knights, Sydney Olympic & Perth Glory, as well as an A-League Premiers Plate with the Central Coast Mariners.
Melbourne-born, Pondeljak spoke of his delight at returning home when it was announced he had signed a two-year deal.
“I’m happy to be coming back to my home town and I’m looking forward to the next two seasons,” Pondeljak said.
“There’s a good bunch of boys from what I hear and there’s a good mix of youth and experience, so it’s going to be exciting stuff.
“I’ve got a young family now, so we were just waiting for an opportunity and it’s come along, which is great.
“I’ve always wanted to play football in Melbourne, so coming back to play for Victory is a huge bonus.”
WATCH: Pondeljak's 2009 Grand Final winner
Pondeljak enjoyed success at Victory, scoring the decisive goal in the 2009 Grand Final against Adelaide and returning to the Socceroos squad after seven years when he played in Australia's Asian Cup qualifying match against Indonesia in 2009.
He featured in 133 A-League games for Victory before leaving Victory at the end of the 2011/12 season to return to his boyhood club St Albans Saints in the Victorian state leagues.
Where is he now?
After spending time away from football once his playing career concluded, Pondeljak is now giving back to football as a junior coach at St Albans, which currently plays in the top-tier NPL Victoria.
It closes the circle on Pondeljak's football career, as he played his first lot of senior games at St Albans after leaving the VIS, before joining Melbourne Knights in the NSL in 1995.