What a huge sporting event we have scheduled for tomorrow night at Oakes Oval, Lismore, when Melbourne Heart FC and Western Sydney Wanderers FC come together for the first time in an A-League Trial.
The teams will be playing for the inaugural Craig Foster Cup, in an initiative brokered by Melbourne Heart to recognise one of Lismore's favorite sons and a man widely regarded as the pre-eminent football analyst in Australia.
The Heart have been in town since last Sunday and have trained daily at Oakes Oval and facilities at Southern Cross University, as part of a week long schedule to prepare themselves for the upcoming A-League season.
Being up close and personal with a professional sporting organisation has been a unique opportunity. The generous preparedness of everyone from head coach John Aloisi, to players and support staff to make time for local players and the many school children who have watched them train is a testament to their club culture.
Securing this training visit and the A-League trial is an acknowledgement of an environment that promotes co-operation within our community. Lismore City Council are to be congratulated for their enthusiastic support of this significant event for benefit of the sporting and broader public. Through their events unit, led so capably by Leanne Clark and John Bancroft, Lismore has established a solid reputation for its facilities and capacity to organise favourable outcomes.
The influence of Craig Foster was central to Melbourne Heart FC first becoming aware of Lismore as a possible pre-season training venue and it is Craig's reputation, drive and commitment to the local area that was a major catalyst in the club actively pursuing Lismore as a destination.
Many stakeholders have contributed to make this event come to fruition and Football Far North Coast is proud to be associated with groups such as the Lismore Business Promotions Panel.
We expect a huge crowd at Oakes Oval tomorrow night when the game kicks off at 7pm. With a bargain price of $10 per adult and most kids being able to get in by presentation of a coupon from the Northern Star, we only need fine weather to get a fantastic night of entertainment. Gates open at 5pm.