Football Federation Tasmania (FFT) and Melbourne Victory FC are pleased to announce a unique sporting partnership that will benefit Tasmanian football.
Media Release From Football Federation Tasmania
Today, FFT unveils Melbourne Victory FC as the naming rights sponsor of the new Tasmanian state league, which will be known as the Victory League. FFT is also pleased to announce that Melbourne Victory will be undertaking a pre-season tour of Tasmania involving all three regions of the state.
Melbourne Victory head up a suite of sponsors that have each committed for at least three years, ensuring the Victory League’s sustainability. FFT will add to this list of partners in coming weeks.
A further announcement on the clubs that will be invited to join the Victory League will be made shortly.
FFT President Sean Collins said today’s announcement was an important milestone in the organisation’s strategy to grow the sport in Tasmania.
“The speculation is over – the Victory League is go for 2013,” Mr Collins said.
“In Melbourne Victory we have a major partner who can deliver huge benefits both on and off the field. We’re delighted with their commitment and look forward to a strong partnership.”
The Victory League will kick off in March 2013.
To ensure strong club buy-in to the league, FFT will consult widely with the football community – addressing areas such as
■ Victory League competition regulations
■ Overall competition structures and player pathways
■ Victory League marketing and promotion
■ Rostering and the match day experience
The creation of a state league is an important step for Tasmanian football in aligning the state’s competitions and player development within the framework outlined by Football Federation Australia’s National Competitions Review.
Additionally, Forestry Tasmania has given in-principle support to continue its sponsorship of the Southern and Northern Premier Leagues, which will ensure ongoing support for regional football.
Overall, the sponsorship achieved is the most significant ongoing private investment in FFT programs in the history of Tasmanian football.
Melbourne Victory Pre-Season Tour
Melbourne Victory have also announced their commitment to partner with FFT to provide regular A-League content for Tasmania, beginning with a pre-season tour in August this year.
This tour will include junior football clinics, school visits, chances for the football community to engage with Melbourne Victory FC and two matches.
The senior Tasmanian team will play Melbourne Victory at KGV Park on Tuesday 21 August, followed by Melbourne Victory playing Adelaide United at Aurora Stadium on Friday 24 August.
In Hobart, Victory and Tasmania will compete for the inaugural PFD Shield – named after major sponsors PFD Foodservices, Tasmania’s leading distributor for fresh and frozen foods, drygoods and an extensive range of paper products.
PFD joins Optus, Forestry Tasmania, Boag’s, Glenorchy City Council, Launceston City Council and Football Federation Australia as key sponsors or partners for the week.
“We know the football community are keen for more A-League content in Tasmania and we’re delighted that Australia’s biggest football club, Melbourne Victory have agreed to spend a week in Tasmania on a pre-season tour,” Mr Collins said.
“Having Victory in the state for a long stretch of time enables us to run clinics for junior footballers, visit schools, run sessions for up and coming coaches and to engage the whole football community.”
Melbourne Victory Coach Ange Postecoglou and Assistant Coach Kevin Muscat will be bringing Victory’s full squad – including new marquee signing Marcos Flores, Socceroos Archie Thompson, Danny Allsopp and Mark Milligan – to Tasmania for matches in the north and the south.
FFT last hosted an A-League team in Hobart in 2010, when on just two weeks notice more than 2000 punters packed KGV to see Tasmania compete against Central Coast Mariners.
Tickets will go on sale from Wednesday 1 August and will be available from the FFT office, KGV Park, and ‘yes’ Optus stores in Hobart, Eastlands and the Launceston CBD.
“We expect the KGV game to sell out so I would urge fans to pre-purchase their tickets to avoid missing out,” FFT CEO Mr Boulous said.
Further information regarding Melbourne Victory’s week in Tasmania will be released in coming days.
FFT-MVFC Key Partnership Benefits
FFT and Melbourne Victory’s partnership is a unique one in Australian sport, and will help to increase Tasmanian engagement with the sport at all levels. FFT hopes that the partnership will also achieve growth in two key streams: elite player pathways and ongoing A-League content.
Elite Player Pathways
Melbourne Victory and FFT’s partnership will align the FFT Elite Player Pathway into Melbourne Victory programs, ensuring that talented Tasmanian players within the NTC program can train under Victory coaching staff – both in Tasmania and within the Victory setup in Melbourne.
“Melbourne Victory’s coaching and scouting team will be regular visitors to Tasmania, working with Tasmanian technical staff to develop Tasmanian players,” Mr Boulous said.
“This partnership is about ending the notion that playing in the A-League is a distant dream for Tasmanians.
“We want to break down the barriers for elite talent so that they can make the leap to national competitions more easily. We hope that this is the start of many Tasmanian players finding their feet in the A-League in future years,” Mr Boulous said.
Ongoing A-League Content in Tasmania
Melbourne Victory have agreed to make their pre-season tour a regular event, giving a commitment to bring its entire senior squad to Tasmania on an annual basis.
Additionally, Melbourne Victory and FFT will continue to support an A-League fixture in Launceston in 2013 & 2014 and to work together with the FFA to bring an annual A-League fixture to Hobart.
“We think both Hobart and Launceston deserve A-League matches and we’ll work together with the A-League to get a match down here. We hope that we can work with the different levels of Government to get their support for this venture,” Mr Boulous said.
“We’re excited about the potential about this partnership and will look to maximise the benefits to grow the game at all levels,” Mr Boulous said.