Chairman Anthony Di Pietro says Melbourne Victory must now transfer their domestic success to the continental stage in the Asian Champions League.
Speaking after Victory’s triumphant Grand Final win over Sydney FC 3-0 on Sunday, Di Pietro said the club now must emulate what Western Sydney Wanderers did last year in the ACL.
Wanderers won the ACL trophy for the first time in Australian club history last November after defeating Saudi Arabia's Al Hilal over two legs.
Now Victory must plan for similar success, vows the Victory chairman, as the club eye the ACL in 2016.
“We’ve qualified for the Asian Champions League and we think that we’ve learnt a lot from the past. We think West Sydney have led the way and set a great example and a pathway.
“And we want to be the next to get in there and showcase what Australia can produce,” he told www.a-league.com.au.
“There’s not a measure now that we’re not the strongest club – from Grand Final winners, Premiers’ Plate, crowds, broadcast, membership – and we want to bring that through to Asia.
“It’s a collective effort and different challenges for each club,” he added when asked if other A-League clubs should and could learn from Victory.
“At the moment there is a collective thinking and camaraderie between the A-League and collaboration with the FFA that we really want to take this to the next level. It’s about what can we do to better the league.”
But that’s the future. On Sunday night an ecstatic Di Pietro and his hard-working colleagues will savour the occasion of winning the Grand Final just weeks after holding aloft the Premiers’ Plate.
“It’s quite surreal,” he added. “There’s been so much hard work on and off the field. This will be a spectacle that will go down in history. It was a cauldron.”