Melbourne Victory’s Oli Bozanic goes 1v1 with the PFA to gives us an insight into his decision to return from Europe, how he has settled into life at his new club, winning the FFA Cup and his hopes for the remainder of the season.

Q. You made the decision to return to the A-League from Europe; how did you reach the decision to join Melbourne Victory?

OB: I finished my contract with Luzern and I wanted to take up a new challenge in my career and I started to look at other options and Melbourne Victory was the best option for me. It’s a massive club and they were coming off a really successful season last year so it was the right move for me at this stage in my career.

Q. How different was it this time around returning compared to when you joined the Mariners in 2010 after having been in England for the three previous years?

OB: I knew what to expect this time round so that was quite different. It was actually an easier decision to make this time as I knew so much more about the league and what the club would be like having played against the Victory.

Q. What were your first impressions at the Victory?

OB: I knew it was a big club and that was shown to me straight away. There is a big crowd at every game and they create one of the best atmospheres I have played in the front of and I’m very happy to be here.

Q. You got off to a great start with the club winning the FFA Cup for your first piece of silverware, how much did it mean to have success straight away?

OB: It was great to get the first piece of silverware at the new club but because it’s at the beginning of the season you don’t have too much time to celebrate, you take it and enjoy it and then you have to focus straight back on the league.

Q. You had experienced the F3 derby during your time at the Mariners but how much have you enjoyed the Melbourne derby?

OB: The Melbourne derby is unbelievable. It has so much intensity on the pitch and in the crowd, it is just something you can’t explain until you are there in person out on the pitch.

Q. We are now just over the half-way mark of the season with your club in great form and many others such as the Wanderers and City performing exceptionally well; how exciting do think the race is going to be for the premiership?

OB: It is very exciting but for us we are just taking it one game at a time and we will see how we finish up at the end of the season.


Q. You have the ACL coming up now, how much are you looking forward to facing the best clubs in Asia?

OB: I have played in it twice before with the Mariners but this is going to be a different challenge. It’s a massive tournament for the players, the club and the fans and we are really looking forward to it.


Q. Was the ACL a big draw card when you made the decision to return to the A-League?

OB: Yeah definitely. You want to be part of the toughest competitions and the ACL gives you the chance to be tested against the best in Asia.

Q. Finally, you were away from the A-League for two seasons, how far do think it has progressed?

OB: The A-League keeps getting stronger and stronger and our league is becoming better every season and you can now make that leap to Europe and that shows that we are heading in the right direction.

Each week the PFA will go 1v1 with a current or former player to gain an insight into the lives of footballers on and off the pitch.

Images by Chad Gibson / Local FC.