VAR and a long pre-season were only some of the things Kristijan Dobras had to learn to come to terms with when signing for Melbourne Victory.
The 27-year-old signed for the club in August after eleven seasons in Austria, where he made over 150 appearance playing in the first and second division.
His new life in Melbourne did not get off to the best of starts – spending his first week in in bed sick.
Though upon a full recovery, the attacking midfielder quickly caught the eye of the Victory coaching staff and was rewarded with a 70-minute debut in Saturday’s Melbourne derby.
“My first week [in Australia] was not so good because I was sick so after not sleeping and the jet lag, so I spent one week in bed but now I feel good. It was a good game for running and my body feels good.”
“I feel very good after a short pre-season for me, after three months the first game was good. It’s a new life for me, I extremely enjoyed [the derby] but hopefully next time we can get the win,” Dobras said.
“I forgot about VAR after we celebrated, I saw the video and that it was offside, it was a nice celebration from Elvis though.
“We played well in the derby, it’s always in the football business you meet new players and friends and I’m looking forward to the next game.
One of the key differences Dobras identified about the A-League was the structure of the pre-season.
Melbourne Victory were knocked out of the FFA Cup in the Round of 32 by the Newcastle Jets, which deprived the side of any competitive fixtures until the beginning of the season.
“It’s different in Australia, when you play a friendly game you have to play against the same teams that play in the league, in Austria you have more countries to play against,” he said.