Melbourne Victory fans were given a promising glimpse into the future during Saturday night’s International Champions Cup Australia match against Juventus at the MCG.
Two of Victory’s brightest youth team prospects – Sebastian Pasquali and Josh Hope – made their senior debuts for the club against one of the world’s most successful teams.
The teenagers entered the fray during the second half and both were involved the lead-up play which resulted in Jai Ingham’s 83rd-minute equaliser.
Sixteen-year-old Pasquali received widespread acclaim for his 25-minute cameo, which included a calmly taken penalty in the shootout win.
“It was a big night for him,” Victory head coach Kevin Muscat said of Pasquali. “We asked him to come on and contribute and affect the game, and he did so.
“He’s a young boy. I don’t think we can get too excited. He wouldn’t be training with us in the squad if he didn’t have some sort of ability.
“At the moment he’s a young man learning his trade, and he’s showed some good signs.
“He’s taking on board what is asked of him. He’s only just started his senior professional career.
“There’ll be times when he’ll be pulled away from us and he won’t be with us – he’ll continue with his studies, which is obviously important.
“At this point in time, we’ll nurture him along.
“It was just important to get some minutes into the players. It was exciting for them to be out there in the penalty shootout.”
Victory youth players Cameron McGilp, Christian Theoharous and Callum Goulding were also in the match-day squad for the game against Juventus.
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