Mark Milligan may have sat out his side’s most recent A-League win, but he will have been watching the game from the Socceroos training camp alongside fellow Victory international Archie Thompson – and by the full-time whistle he will have been far happier that his move to EPL outfit Crystal Palace fell through.

When news broke of the South London club’s interest in Milligan he was boarding a plane to Brazil to represent his country against the World Cup hosts, but when an impasse was reached regarding the break-down of the transfer fee, no agreement could be reached before the Premier League’s transfer deadline.

Milligan was said to be disappointed that no deal could be brokered, but having seen his team-mates comfortably defeat state league side Hume City in a pre-season friendly, he will most likely be in agreement with the general consensus of the country’s football betting that the Victory are likely to improve on last season’s showing, when they finished a disappointing third and subsequently failed to even make the Grand Final.

Another voice that has contributed to the recent wave of betting on Melbourne Victory’s title hopes has been that of defender Scott Galloway, who has demanded more from his team-mates this time around:

“I can’t wait for the season to start. You never go into anything just to do well, you want to go in and win it and Melbourne Victory is certainly a club that can do that and should be doing that.”

The news that Victory will still have Milligan’s talent available to them for their season opener against Melbourne Heart will be a real boost, and with the team already showing signs of coming together nicely on the field, this could well be the year that Ange Postecoglou’s men go all the way.

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