Melbourne Victory returning to Ballarat for A-league pre-season match with Western Sydney | video

Reigning A-League champion Melbourne Victory is returning to Ballarat for a pre-season game for the second year in a row.

Victory will play Western Sydney Wanderers in an all-A-League friendly at Morshead Park on Saturday, September 8.

BIG TIME: Sam Clark and Isla Greer in Wanderers and Victory colours
at a BDSA community gathering celebrating the A-League announcement.

BIG TIME: Sam Clark and Isla Greer in Wanderers and Victory colours at a BDSA community gathering celebrating the A-League announcement.

The Navy Blues played Brisbane Roar in Ballarat in September last year in the build-up to the A-League season.

Ballarat and District Soccer Association president Herman Bogers said the BDSA was rapt to have secured the match, which would kick off at 2.30pm.

He said it would be a huge day for the region’s soccer community.

As well as the friendly, the BDSA has organised a business luncheon at which Victory coach Kevin Muscat and his Wanderers counterpart Markus Babel, who is in his first season, as guest speakers.

There will also be a player-signing session before the game and BDSA MiniRoos activities as half-time entertainment.

Bogers said having Victory players available to meet and greet the Ballarat community was a huge bonus.

He said each side had confirmed it would field the strongest line-up available.

Muscat said the match would come at an important time in the pre-season, providing a great opportunity to get minutes in against A-League opposition.

"We enjoyed the chance to play in Ballarat last year and look forward to making the trip to Morshead Park again,” he said.

Wanderers player Bruce Kamau said it would be a great chance for Western Sydney to test itself against A-League opposition ahead of the home and away season.

The A-League season begins on Friday, October 19, with Victory and Wanderers scheduled tomeet for the first time in round six on December 1.

Soccer previews, p60