A-League Men 2022-23 season draw: Sydney FC to host Nani's Melbourne Victory in return to Allianz Stadium

TNC x ESPN: 'SF was first time Western United hurt Victory as a club' (1:44)

The National Curriculum team discuss the significance of the blow dealt to the Victory in their 4-1 semi-final defeat to Western United. (1:44)

Sydney FC's first game at the newly refurbished Allianz Stadium will be a blockbuster Big Blue against Nani's Melbourne Victory, the Australian Professional Leagues (APL) confirmed on Thursday.

The 2022-23 A-League Men draw was announced on Thursday, with a Grand Final rematch between Western United and Melbourne City scheduled to kick things off on Friday Oct. 7 at AAMI Park.

The following day, Victory recruit Nani will get his first taste of ALM action with the former Manchester United winger set to face Sydney FC, who return to Allianz Stadium after a four-year absence.

Western Sydney recruit Milos Ninkovic won't have to wait long to face Sydney FC, either, with the Wanderers set to visit Allianz Stadium on Nov. 12 in round six for his first game against the Sky Blues since controversially leaving in the off-season.

The Serbia international -- a two-time Johnny Warren Medal winner -- played 181 games for Sydney before being lured to their bitter rivals by WSW coach Mark Rudan.

As well as their reunion with Ninkovic early in the season, Steve Corica's Sky Blues have a clash with foundation player turned manager Dwight Yorke to look forward to when they face Macarthur FC in round four.

- Subscribe to ESPN AU/NZ's football podcasts
- The Far Post | The National Curriculum | More

Yorke will begin his managerial career with the Bulls with an away trip to face a Brisbane Roar, buoyed by English import Charlie Austin at Suncorp Stadium on Oct. 8.

Central Coast Mariners and Newcastle Jets resume their rivalry at Gosford on the same day to open their season.

Wellington Phoenix, who have spent most of the last few seasons on the road, return to Sky Stadium on Oct. 9 against Adelaide United.

Perth Glory, who have encountered similar displacement due to COVID-19, are away to the Wanderers and Newcastle in the opening two rounds before returning to HBF Park to face the Mariners in round three.

Round six will be the final set of fixtures before the competition takes a month-long break as the Socceroos prepare for the World Cup in Qatar. The ALM resumes on Dec. 11, eight days before the World Cup final.

The APL has made some subtle adjustments to the fixture list which means Saturday night's primetime game on free-to-air partner Network 10 will not clash with any other games.

Midweek games have been scrapped except for congested periods around Christmas, Easter and Anzac Day with the majority of games to be played from Friday through to Sunday night.

Last year's draw was heavily impacted by floods and player shortages due to COVID-19, with 113 of 226 games across the men's and women's competitions forced to be rearranged.

"This season we hope for a more healthy environment in our community with COVID-19 reducing its impact on our daily lives," A-Leagues commissioner Greg O'Rourke said.

"We have worked hard to reflect the feedback from the fans and deliver a draw that makes it easy to know when our games will be played, with 90% of them being scheduled in just four time slots.

"Our Saturday night game returns to standalone status, and we have worked to deliver as many games as possible in the slots that each club has told us their fans prefer."