Defender Adrian Leijer had the luxury of an early inspection of the Simonds Stadium pitch in Geelong this week ahead of the blockbuster New Year clash against ladder leader Perth Glory on Friday, January 2.
Leijer was on hand to address local media ahead of the first Hyundai A-League match to be played at the venue for Championship points and expressed his own individual excitement, and that of the team, at playing a home game in Geelong, a place he called home from the age of 15.
“It looks it could be a top of the table clash so to get down to Geelong for what is going to be a massive game, should draw a big crowd and to play on this fantastic stadium is very exciting,”
Melbourne Victory last played at the venue in February this year when it hosted an Asian Champions League qualifier match and attracted over 10,000 fans.
“That was a huge success. The boys loved the pitch and loved the stadium, the facilities were great and everyone down here really looked after us and we’re pretty excited its now moved to competition points and we can’t wait to get out there,” Leijer said.
The 28-year-old was joined on the immaculate Simonds Stadium surface by the Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Sport and Veteran Affairs, Hon John Eren and City of Greater Geelong Deputy Mayor, Cr Michelle Heagney.
“I’m very proud of the investment that the State Government is making in relation to having these games at Simonds Stadium.”
“We’ve invested as the City of Greater Geelong to ensure Melbourne Victory play some further games here which they will be doing over the next three years.”
The support of the City of Greater Geelong has been pivotal in Melbourne Victory’s foray into the region over the next three years and Councillor Heagney said the City was thrilled to embrace A-League football.
“It’s important to recognise that Geelong is not just an Aussie Rules town but Geelong is more actually than that and at local grass roots level ….soccer is the game to play, it’s the one to be in so I think if we encourage that, encourage the multiculturalism of our country and that just makes our community stronger.”
Kick-off for the January 2 fixture is 7.40pm and tickets are available from ticketek.com.au
If you can’t make it to Simonds Stadium, the match will be televised live on Fox Sports 4 (Channel 505) and SBS ONE and on radio through ABC Grandstand Digital and SEN 1116.
PUBLIC TRANSPORT INFO
On January 2, 2015, Melbourne Victory will face Perth Glory in the first Hyundai A-League match at Simonds Stadium in Geelong.
To the game:
The closest train station to Simonds Stadium is South Geelong. Please note that not all V-line trains to Geelong stop at South Geelong.
There will be three (3) V-Line trains to South Geelong departing from Southern Cross Station at 5:23pm, 5:32pm and 5:54pm.
If you are unable to catch these lines or decide to arrive early, you will need to get off at Geelong Station and make your way Simonds Stadium.
After the game:
Two trains have been organised to depart from South Geelong Station to Southern Cross
Depart South Geelong at 10:10pm and arrives Southern Cross at 11:12pm.
Depart South Geelong at 10:39pm (from Waurn Ponds) and arrives Southern Cross at 11:41pm.
For members and supporters driving to Geelong, parking options are available in and around Simonds Stadium.