Melbourne Victory's W-League team could spend part of its pre-season on the Border next month.
The club has developed a strong relationship with the region in recent years through training programs with Border NPL outfit Murray United and will strongly consider running a pre-season camp for its squad on December 11 and 12 while in Wodonga for a coaching masterclass.
If the junior program attracts enough interest, Victory's football development manager and W-League assistant coach Gareth Turnbull said the entire squad and its coaching staff will make the trip up.
Turnbull said Victory had hoped to orgainse a pre-season friendly at La Trobe Wodonga against W-League rival Canberra United, less than three weeks out from round one on December 27, but the budget didn't permit.
Murray United's under-17 boys side has been flagged for a hit-out against Victory's women the weekend the visit to the region is planned.
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"It's a shame we can't make it work with Canberra as that would have been ideal preparation," Turnbull said.
"It's something Jeff (head coach Jeff Hopkins) has been wanting to do for a couple of seasons, so we'll reapply for it again in 10 months' time.
"It gives us a little more time to get things sorted. We'll look to come up next year as part of our pre-season preparation and play a game.
"Because it is so close (to the season), we want to make sure we're prioritising our preparation and we need to play a game that weekend.
"The Murray boys will be an option if we come up, but if we don't we'll still play a game at home potentially against our own academy team and the following week we have a friendly planned against Melbourne City."
Victory's coaching masterclass is aimed at six to 15-year-olds and will be a combination of the previous pre-academy development camps run in Wodonga and community engagement.
"We've rebranded our PAC camp and masterclass camp, which has historically been a metro only three-day clinic, to a regional masterclass camp so the community and football staff go together to the regions," Turnbull said.
"They're delivering effectively two different products, a community project which is exposure to the game and more for fun and enjoyment, while the football department deliver a pre-academy type training session where the theme for the day is to try to develop the more talented or motivated players.
"We have three boys (Ryan Kemp, Noah Spry and Linus Bourke) in the academy full-time from the Border region who commute down a minimum twice a week, which is a big commitment, but there's some talented kids up there who we want to try and identify and bring them into the academy if we can.
"I was with the under-13s last year and 14s this year and Ryan Kemp is in that age group, while Noah Spry has been pretty active since our restart. Linus Bourke has been doing really well and is up with the under-19s at the moment."
For more on the masterclass, visit gomvfc.com.au/regionalmasterclass/.