There will be numerous subplots to Tuesday night’s crunch AFC Champions League match between Melbourne Victory and Gamba Osaka at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.
Most notably, the game presents a chance for Victory to progress to the Round of 16 in Asia’s premier club competition, a feat it has never achieved.
But it may also be the last time fans see Archie Thompson in a Victory shirt, after it was announced on Saturday that this season will be his last at the club.
Victory will also say goodbye to Matthieu Delpierre and Kosta Barbarouses if it fails to secure a top-two finish in Group G of the ACL.
Thompson, who has featured in all five of Victory’s AFC Champions League campaigns, is hoping Tuesday night’s result will give him a couple more opportunities to represent the club in the last 16, which is played over two legs in May.
“We’ve got a big game on Tuesday and it’s a massive opportunity for myself to leave the club on a high,” Thompson said.
“Hopefully we get the chance to go through. I don’t want it to finish on Tuesday, I want it to finish at the end of May.
“It’s going to be difficult knowing potentially it could be the last time I step onto AAMI Park.
“I’m going to be towing those boys along on Tuesday to hopefully give me at least another two more games.”
Victory head coach Kevin Muscat put the call out to all Victory fans to make sure they are there to potentially farewell a great of the club.
“We’ve got an opportunity to thank Archie. It’s certainly not goodbye, it’s thank you,” he said.
“Tuesday night is a massive opportunity for us to create more history and Archie will be front and centre of that.”
Tickets for Victory’s match against Gamba Osaka on Tuesday night are available by clicking here.