Heart kicks-off pre-season campaign with win

Melbourne Heart FC kicked off pre-season with a comfortable 4-0 win over a Victorian Champions League select side at Stead Park in Geelong on Friday night.

Melbourne Heart FC kicked off pre-season with a comfortable 4-0 win over a Victorian Champions League select side at Stead Park in Geelong on Friday night.

Dylan Macallister scored two goals on his Melbourne Heart debut, with Nick Kalmar and a freak goal from Simon Colosimo rounding out the scoring.

It was a rusty first half performance by a side compiled of mainly triallists and a few new signings, but a strong second half sealed the emphatic victory in what was John Aloisi's first game in-charge since taking over as head coach of the club in May.

Defenders Patrick Gerhardt and David Vrankovic, also making their debuts, started together at the back, with Macallister paired up-front with Jason Hoffman.

In the first fifteen minutes the two forwards were right in the thick of the action, and both had decent chances to give Heart an early lead, but could not put them away.

In a scrappy first half the first real shot on goal came on the half-hour mark through Hoffman, but his shot was saved by young VCL goalkeeper Tyner Gough who produced an inspiring first half display.

Macallister almost put Heart into the lead shortly afterwards but Gough was on hand to deny what would have been a spectacular bicycle-kick goal.

But the break-through finally came three minutes before the end of the first half, with Macallister heading in a brilliant Andreas Govas corner.

Aloisi made three changes at half-time, bringing on the experienced Clint Bolton, Simon Colosimo and Michael Marrone in place of Andrew Redmayne, Patrick Gerhardt and Matt Thompson.

You could immediately sense an improvement at the start of the second half and it was not long before Heart doubled their lead.

It was another Govas assist, with the midfielder playing in a great ball to Macallister who easily tucked away his second goal of the night.

Hoffman and then Nick Kalmar were guilty of squandering great chances, but the latter would eventually make it 3-0 on 74 minutes with a cool finish past the goalkeeper.

Dylan Macallister was desperate for a hat trick but his luck seemingly ran out, with a header bouncing over the bar before a cheeky chip came off the post.

But Melbourne Heart eventually did get a fourth goal, in quite spectacular fashion, with a long-ball from Colosimo taking an awkward bounce over the goalkeeper and rolling into an empty net.

Our next pre-season game is this coming Wednesday against Port Melbourne at JL Murphy Reserve. Kick-off is at 7.30pm.