New strip, sponsor for Victory

Melbourne Victory has secured a new sponsor, announced a new strip and confirmed it will play English Premier League side Fulham in a pre-season friendly as a build-up to the club's championship defence.

Melbourne Victory has secured a new sponsor, announced a new strip and confirmed it will play English Premier League side Fulham in a pre-season friendly as a build-up to the club's championship defence.

Victory announced that lottery company Intralot had agreed to become the club's major sponsor on a two-year deal with an option for another year. The company, which takes over from electronics giant Samsung, has been operating in Victoria since July 2008, and has a 10-year licence to run lottery and instant tickets in Victoria.

"We're pleased to welcome Intralot Australia into our organisation and see many exciting collaborative opportunities in the future. They are an emerging company in Victoria and we look forward to helping them grow their brand," Victory chairman Geoff Lord said.

"In fact, the focus that both of our companies have on Melbourne and Victoria, helps make this partnership a perfect fit."

Intralot will feature on the front of the club's new-look shirts for 2009/10, but sponsorship positions remain open on the back of the shirt and shorts. Melbourne will have to find another shirt sponsor for the Asian Champions League, with the AFC prohibiting gaming advertising.

The new-look navy blue home strip is similar to the old one, but features several stripes down the sides. The away strip is all white with a blue V, with blues stripes down the side.

Meanwhile, Victory will take on Premier League outfit Fulham at Etihad Stadium on Saturday July 11 as part of the Cottagers three-match tour of Australia. Socceroos goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer will be the major drawcard while former Victory defender Adrian Leijer, currently on loan at Norwich, also a chance to turn out against his former club.

Melbourne hosted Italian giant Juventus in front of 45,000 fans in May last year.

"Following the success of the Juventus game last year, we're committed to bringing more of the world's biggest clubs to Melbourne and Fulham will undoubtedly provide an entertaining spectacle," Lord said.

"These games show the global nature of our sport, and give the people of Melbourne and Australia a real taste of it."

However, the club did not make any announcements regarding the future of championship players Kevin Muscat and Carlos Hernandez. Coach Ernie Merrick said negotiations were progressing with both parties and he expected an announcement shortly.

"We're busy dealing with Carlos' seven agents at the moment," he joked. "As for Kevin, he just working on some leverage."