Match Preview: City v Victory

Melbourne City FC will host an NPL3 Melbourne Derby this weekend at Parade College as the team looks for a first win of the 2022 season.

John Maisano’s side opened its account for the new campaign with a 1-1 draw at home against Doveton SC.

City was dominant in its first game at its temporary home ground in Bundoora, but, despite a host of early chances, the team didn’t find an opener until the 39th minute. Usually the goal scorer, Max Caputo turned provider this time around when he stopped short of the penalty area and teed up Luke Oresti for a first time strike which nestled perfectly in the bottom right corner.

Caputo saw several big chances himself and so too did his City teammates, but the team’s inaccuracy would come back to bite them as they conceded a scrappy goal in the 72nd. Doveton’s 2021 leading goalscorer Samuel Catherine made a run to the front post and tried to backheel flick a shot past Ahmad Taleb in goal, but the forward scuffed his contact, only for the ball to bounce off City’s keeper and back into an advantageous position for Catherine to bundle it over the line.

The home side kept peppering the Doveton goal, even striking the crossbar in stoppage time, but was ultimately forced to settle for just a single point to start the new season.

However, considering Doveton’s achievements in 2021 and the absence of all of City’s A-League contingent, the dominant performance made for promising signs overall and the team will hope to replicate – though with an improved result – its Round 1 display when it takes on Melbourne Victory for an NPL3 Melbourne Derby.

Similarly held to a 1-1 draw at home by Whittlesea Ranges, Victory will also be looking for a first win of 2022 as both teams aspire for promotion in the new season, ensuring that Sunday’s meeting will make for a fascinating contest at Parade College.

From Victory’s Round 1 lineup, fans may recognise the names of defender Aaron Andersen, who has A-League experience for the club, as well as former Newcastle Jets midfielder Luka Prso.

Victory goalkeeper Marko Bulic will miss the Derby following his sending off against Whittlesea in the 52nd minute.

Match Details

NPL3 Victoria

Melbourne City FC vs Melbourne Victory FC

Sunday 27 March, kick-off 3:00pm

Parade College, Bundoora