ILLAWARRA PREMIER LEAGUE FOOTBALL
It's the sort of thing a lifelong Juventus fan could usually only fantasise about.
But for Port Kembla skipper Daniel Aliffi, the chance to play in front of Italian football's biggest name has become a reality.
When Alessandro Del Piero's Sydney FC side meet the Newcastle Jets at WIN Stadium today, 31-year-old Aliffi will fulfil his childhood dreams.
"I was born a Juventus fan - growing up, Del Piero was my idol," Aliffi said.
"My son's name is Alex, so that says it all really.
"It would be unbelievable if Del Piero was to be there. It will be a special moment."
Though Del Piero is not expected to take the field for the pre-season clash, a vast majority of Aliffi's Port Kembla club will be on hand to catch a glimpse of the Italian superstar.
'There are a lot of Italians in the club," Aliffi said.
"Players and committee members and most of them are Juventus fans.
"So everyone is quite excited about Port Kembla playing before a Sydney FC game with Del Piero in it, who was a legend for Juventus."
Port's day would only be made more satisfying if the club win their curtain-raising major-semi final clash against Bulli.
The League Championship winners won their penultimate round match 2-0 against Bulli and are aiming deal a similar blow at WIN Stadium today.
"We have beaten them twice in the league so we can take a lot of confidence out of those results," Aliffi said.
"We know their strengths and weaknesses and we plan to combat against that.
"We will be confident going into the game but we know anything can happen in a finals game.
"It's a big game. We want to get into this grand final and top off a great year."
The bonus of a grand-final berth for Port is a second date at the region's premier venue, the skipper says. And this cherry on top of a stellar season should motivate Port to maintain their high standard.
"I want the boys to start with a high intensity, take control of the game early and play to our strengths," Aliffi said.
"It should be a nice surface to play on, which will be good for our midfielders and strikers,who like to play the ball on the ground and create things."
Port will take a mammoth 16-game unbeaten record onto the under-utilised WIN surface.
But Aliffi insists the regular-season feat does not factor at finals time.
"Those sixteen games are in the past," Aliffi said.