Thursday, 23 February 2006 3:45 PM
South Melbourne FC and Preston Lions FC have worked together to organise the inaugural game for ‘The Harmony Cup’. The first leg will be played on this Sunday, 26th February at Bob Jane Stadium and the return leg will be played at O’Connor Reserve in round two of the Vodafone Cup.
South Melbourne FC President, Greg Kaias proudly supported the initiative.
“I would like to thank my Board for initiating this event and I congratulate Preston Lions FC for welcoming our suggestion. South Melbourne is one of the biggest Club’s in Australian Football history and it is very important that the South Melbourne moves foward and starts to build bridges with other parties.
“In modern day Australia, there is no room for politics in sport. This is not a new concept. It is as old as the Olympics. We want the fans that come to Bob Jane, to support their Club with passion but also to be respectful of everyone else involved.”
With the assistance of Football Federation Victoria and the close cooperation of The Victorian Multicultural Commission (VMC), the two Clubs have organised to play the game wearing orange armbands, which are a symbol of harmony. The VMC will present the Harmony Cup to the victorious team. In the case of a draw, both captains will be presented the Harmony Cup.
Children of more recently arrived immigrants fom the Horn Of Africa will be play a curtain raiser. Just as South Melbourne has been a cultural melting pot for so many migrant communities over the years, it is fitting that these children are involved and given the opportunity to pursue the spirit and ideals of sportmanship on the grand stage of Bob Jane Stadium.
South Melbourne boasts a playing list that is representative of multicultural Australia and wishes to extend a welcoming spirit to Melbourne’s football fraternity.
Mr Kaias expressed his optimism for the event. “I would like to think that the public will see that our Club’s are run by good hardworking volunteers that care for the sport. If South wants to be part of the A-League in the future we must show leadership to resolve bad behaviour of the past.”