Continuity key for Victory midfield ahead of new campaign

Amidst a busy off-season of exciting additions in other areas of the line-up, Victory’s midfield core will return in 2022/23 with a familiar look.

Tony Popovic’s first-choice trio of Jake Brimmer, Josh Brillante and Rai Marchan produced a stunning campaign in their first year together and can only benefit as their chemistry grows.

Victory conceded the least goals in the league and created the fourth-most ‘big chances’ last season, largely thanks to their hard-working engine room.

Reigning Johnny Warren Medallist Brimmer pulls the strings at the peak of the midfield with the consistent support of two-way running Brillante and Marchan behind him every step.

The 24-year-old star recorded seven goals and seven assists in his 2021/22 breakout season and is determined to take his game to another level again this year.

Recent signing Nathan Konstandopoulos will offer Popovic another option in midfield.

The 26-year-old joined Victory from Adelaide United where he made 63 A-League Men’s appearances, scoring seven times over two spells.

Versatile veteran Leigh Broxham can perform a role as a holding midfielder while forward Chris Ikonomidis is capable of giving Brimmer a break as the attacking option.

Emerging talents Luka Prso, Will Wilson and Jay Barnett will also enter the discussion throughout the season.

Another name to keep an eye on is teenager Alex Menelaou.

Menelaou enjoyed a strong NPL season and earned a senior debut in Victory’s MCG Friendly against Manchester United, highlighting the faith of the coaching staff.

Menelaou facing Manchester United

Victory’s A-League Men season kicks off on Saturday 8 October against Sydney FC at Allianz Stadium.

Victory’s first home fixture is the following Saturday 15 October against Western Sydney at AAMI Park.