Preview & Analysis: Knights vs Heidelberg

Heidelberg United will play away to Melbourne Knights on Friday night at Knights Stadium in Round 5 of NPL Victoria men’s.

With the Knights having staged an impressive comeback win against Bentleigh Greens the previous round – and the Warriors also getting up for their first win of the season – this game is shaping up to be an exciting match-up.

Melbourne Knights have been led by head coach Steve Bebic in his second year in charge, notching up two thirds under his belt last year along with assistant coach and former Melbourne Victory midfielder Diogo Ferreira. The duo will hope to get their best out of the team this year.

The Knights have secured the signing of international attacking midfielder Luka Celic. Hailing from the seaside Croatian town of Sibenik, the 24-year-old has spent the vast majority of his career at his local club HNK Sibenik, playing over 100 league games in four seasons – he is a player to keep an eye on Friday night.

Another addition to the Knights squad is the signing of the second international player in Japanese centre back Fuki Ishibashi, having shown his ability as a composed defender – as well as displaying an attacking flair, previously playing in the second division for Manningham United Blues. Fuki will also be another key player to keep a close eye on.

The ‘Bergers will come up against a familiar foe in Justin Micallef. The defensive minded 24-year-old offers adaptability – both defensively as a fullback and offensively as a winger. The other notable signings for the Knights have been ex-Melbourne Victory youth player Jack Morton, NPLWA golden boot winner Steve Sokol, left back Andrew Robertson and striker Lionel Masudi.

With the ‘Bergers having welcomed back captain Reuben Way into the starting line-up in the memorable performance last week, the confidence will be high looking to build on from last week. George Katsakis has been happy with how much they have been improving in recent weeks.

The head-to-head results between these two clubs in 2021 were a 1-0 Heidelberg victory at Knights Stadium (Round 6) with the reverse fixture a 2-2 draw at Olympic Park (Round 19).

Match Details:

What: NPL Victoria Men’s Round 5

Who: Melbourne Knights vs Heidelberg United

Where: Knights Stadium, Sunshine North

When: March 18, 2022 – kick-off 7:30pm

How to tune in: NPL.TV & HUFC Radio