Match Day: Heart tackles GNEFA Select tonight

Melbourne Heart FC kicks off its first pre-season match in Shepparton on Thursday night against an ‘All Stars’ select side from the Goulburn North East Football Association.

Melbourne Heart FC kicks off its first pre-season match in Shepparton on Thursday night against an ‘All Stars- select side from the Goulburn North East Football Association.

The Red and White will take a full squad, while the GNEFA have announced a 22-man squad for the match, which will kick off at 7.15pm tonight and will be free entry.

Melbourne Heart General Manager, Football Operations, John Didulica said the team was looking forward to the Club-s first hit-out of pre-season, after a solid six week block of training.

“The guys have been training since early June now and it will be great to see where they are at,” Didulica said.

“We enjoy getting out to regional areas, and it-s wonderful that we can actually have a meaningful contest between a professional team and a regional representative team.”

Melbourne Heart is likely to field a competitive squad for the match, but the full contingent would not necessarily be utilised within the 90 minutes.

“The team is likely to be made up of players who have been training with us since day one of pre-season," Didulica said.

"So we-ll need to be careful of rushing late arrivals into the squad into match play to ensure we reserve players throughout the long off-season."

The match will be a landmark occasion for the Greater Shepparton City Council as it marks the official launch of a multi-million dollar project at the Greater Shepparton Regional Sports Precinct project.

The upgraded facilities will be completed by 2016 and will provide some of the best sporting facilities in regional Australia for the Greater Shepparton community.

Melbourne Heart is hosting a series of community clinics for over 200 young local soccer participants on the grounds adjacent to McEwan Reserve.

Entry to tonight-s match is free.

Melbourne Heart FC Squad: 20. Andrew Redmayne (GK), 3. Rob Wielaert, 6. Patrick Gerhardt, 7. Iain Ramsay, 8. Massimo Murdocca, 9. Dylan Macallister, 10. Harry Kewell, 13. Stefan Mauk, 14. Golgol Mebrahtu, 15. David Williams, 17. Jason Hoffman, 18. David Vrankovic, 19. Benjamin Garuccio, 22. Nick Kalmar, 23. Mate Dugandzic, 24. Sam Mitchinson, 25. Jeremy Walker, 32. Jonatan Germano (plus triallists TBC)

GNEFA All Stars Squad: 1. Lyall Beazley (GK), 2. Kevin Moffat, 3. Kelvin Lomax, 4. Nick Kalafatis, 5. Adam Gatcum, 6. Ivo Madeira, 7. Fahad Alghazly, 8. Ben Clarke, 9. Craig Carley, 10. Jamie England, 11. Sean Ellis, 12. Carl Lamb, 13. James Kalafatis, 14. Louis Corrigan, 15. Josh Quaynor, 16. Riley Hamilton, 17. Spiro Vourgaslis, 18. Alex Goodwin, 19. Joe Hogarty, 20. Anthony Calandro, 21. Hussain Sumali, 22. Muntadhar Al Gazaly (GK)

Match Details Thursday 25 July 2013 Goulburn North East Football Association All Stars vs Melbourne Heart FC McEwen Reserve Kick-Off: 7.15pm Entry: Free