Melbourne Heart FC Captain Simon Colosimo believes his side’s clash with cross town rival Victory marks the arrival of the Hyundai A-League’s first true derby.
Melbourne Heart FC Captain Simon Colosimo believes his side-s clash with cross town rival Victory marks the arrival of the Hyundai A-League-s first true derby.
Following the release of the draw earlier this year, the Heart-Victory match was immediately earmarked as one of the most highly anticipated matches of the season.
While Colosimo acknowledged the passion generated by other rivalries in the competition, the Socceroo said the inaugural Melbourne Derby presents a unique dynamic.
“There’s no doubt that there’s rivalry between Victoria and NSW, Melbourne and Sydney, as you might put it. But this is true derby territory,” he said.
“They say Newcastle and Central Coast is the F3 Derby but there is still the F3 between them. We both kick out of the same stadium. (This is) most definitely more authentic.”
With only three points separating Heart and Victory on the Hyundai A-League table, the match shapes as a critical turning point this season, as the sides seek to keep pace with competition frontrunners.
And as anticipation mounts ahead of the marquee match, Colosimo senses the derby could be the tonic needed to reenergise the Hyundai A-League season.
“All the other codes have finished so this feels like the real start of the season,” he said.
“Every club has improved and recruited well, there’s been a lot of tension and on Friday night to have the first derby in the greatest stadium in the country for football is something every single one of us is looking forward to.”
After serving his two-match suspension, World Cup Socceroo Michael Beauchamp will be in contention for an immediate return to action in a massive boost for the Hyundai A-League newcomer.
Colosimo has also confirmed he will take to the pitch on Friday night after overcoming a neck injury suffered during Heart-s loss to Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium.