Melbourne Victory opens its 2018 NPL2 West campaign with a clash against North Geelong Warriors on Sunday.
After finishing second in Group A of the Foxtel Y-League, Victory turns its attentions back to an NPL campaign with a relatively settled squad.
Victory head coach Gareth Naven is looking forward to seeing his team tested in the NPL2 West, beginning with the hosting of the Warriors at Epping Stadium.
“We’re coming off the back of the Y-League, which is probably a bit more technical and tactical,” he said.
“NPL2 gives you greater challenges in regards to narrowing the gap between youth and men.
“We’re just trying to prepare for that as best as we can. The group is a year older. All of them would’ve experienced a taste of that last year for long periods of time.
“I would like to think they have a better understanding of their preparation, their requirements in that competition, coming into this week’s game and obviously future games.”
Victory finished ninth in the NPL2 West last season, while North Geelong was relegated from the NPL.
NPL2 West 2018 Round 1
Melbourne Victory v North Geelong Warriors
Sunday, February 18, 3.00pm AEDT
Epping Stadium, Melbourne