Melbourne Victory today announced that Swedish striker Ola Toivonen will captain the club for the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season.
Toivonen becomes the first international captain, and just the fifth overall, of the Hyundai A-League side since the club’s inception in 2005, replacing Carl Valeri who held the position between 2015-2019.
Fellow teammates Leigh Broxham, Thomas Deng, Tim Hoogland and Jakob Poulsen will join Toivonen in the leadership group that was jointly selected by the players and coaches.
Melbourne Victory Chairman, Anthony Di Pietro praised the selection of Toivonen to lead the club through the next chapter.
“This is an exciting and significant appointment for our club,” said Di Pietro.
“We all know how much class and experience Ola possesses as a player, which was part of the decision, but this role sets the standards both on-and-off the pitch for our club.
“Both last year and in the pre-season, Ola has led from the front and proved he is a leader – we are confident he will continue to do that and make us proud as the fifth captain of Melbourne Victory.
“On behalf of the club, I congratulate Ola on his appointment and look forward to seeing him lead with passion this season.”
Toivonen made 26 appearances across all competitions for Melbourne Victory last season for a return of 17 goals, 15 of which were netted in the A-League and led to the striker being awarded the TAC Victoria Golden Boot at the 2019 Victory Medal awards night.
Commenting on his appointment, Toivonen was humbled to be chosen by his peers.
“Firstly, I want to thank the players and coaches for selecting me to captain Melbourne Victory this season,” said Toivonen.
“It’s an honour to have been chosen to lead this club, I loved my first season here and am very proud to now be in this position.
“I am passionate about achieving success and together with the support of the leadership group in Leigh, Jakob, Tim and Tommy to drive the team to a good place.
“We have put together a tremendous group of players and we are all looking forward to Round 1 next week.”
Melbourne Victory Head Coach, Marco Kurz was also pleased with the selected leadership group headed by Toivonen.
“Ola will be a fantastic captain of this club, his experience on-and-off the pitch will be invaluable for our team but the support around him in the leadership group is also really important,” said Kurz.
“I was very happy to see Leigh, Thomas, Tim and Jakob selected in the leadership group to work alongside Ola.
“We wanted a balanced leadership team that blended experience, together with some of our younger/up-and-coming players, which we have within the mix of players selected. I am confident the group will go from strength to strength in their new roles.”
Toivonen will lead the team in Victory’s opening match of the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season on Saturday, October 12 against Melbourne City at Marvel Stadium.