FFV state league: unchartered waters again for Vikings

UNCHARTED territory means little for the Sebastopol Vikings.

The club is hell bent on making its mark as a powerhouse of Football Federation Victoria's state league sector just one year after it first entered the competition.

The Vikings are preparing to to be thrown into the deep end this season after being boosted up another level as part of the FFV's re-structure.

Coach Michael Busija is aiming for a similar result to last year, when the Vikings finished fifth in state league five.

"We wanted to get into division four within three or four years, but we've achieved that goal already and now we just want to hold our place," Busija said.

"As a playing group we should be looking for a top-half finish - it's a pretty broad statement to make at the start of the season but we'll sit down as a side and talk it over.

Busija says the club's year will be made or wasted within its first few games, but believes the list is in good shape to compete with the best.

"We can't achieve anything in the start of the season but you can certainly set yourself up for failure," he said.

"I don't think its crucial that we win a lot of games but we want to remain within touching distance of the top teams because halfway through the season there tends to be a gap and you want to get dragged into the stuff down the bottom.

"I'd say the list is stronger in terms of our depth - our squad's now 15-18 players deep whereas last year it was probably 12-13 players deep.

"We have an an experienced, well credentialed squad and we're hoping that the new players can help us build on that," Busija said.

Included in the squad are former Ballarat Red Devils players Kyran Taylor, Will Georgiou and Alex Antonelli as well as returning Vikings defender Jonathan Davey.

However, the club has also lost two of its stars, with reigning best and fairest runner-up Paul McClounan making the move to Epsom while Luke Terrill has left for a Brisbane-based club.

The Vikings' season will kick off on Saturday with an away game to Melton Phoenix at MacPherson Park.

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