Leigh Broxham is set to reach a little-surpassed A-League milestone against Perth Glory, and Melbourne Victory have decided to honour him in a fittingly unusual way.
The Melbourne Victory utility, who made his name as a hard-working midfielder under Ernie Merrick, is set to make his 250th A-League appearance for Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park.
Victory are acknowledging the incredible achievement of their stalwart by handing out Leigh Broxham face masks at the match, and producing some touching testaments on Twitter.
Only Andrew Durante and Nikolai Topor-Stanley have made more A-League apperances as an outfield player, but Broxham has an age advantage that could see him become the leading all-time appearance holder, outfield or otherwise, by the time he retires.
“Individual accolades I’m not completely comfortable with,’’ Broxham told The Herald Sun.
“I’ll look back and enjoy it a bit more when I’m finished, hopefully there’s a few more milestones to come."
The all-time appearance record's currently held by Danny Vukovic, with 285. Broxy already leads the A-League with appearances for one club, and is unique among Australian football luminaries in that he is a truly one club man, having begun his career coinciding the birth of the A-League.
There may never be another career quite like Broxham's, especially at a perennial A-League giant.
Three A-League Championships, a trio of A-League Premierships and the 2015 FFA Cup compliment a sparkling career, with an appearance for Australia testiment to the midfielder's determination to succed, despite limiting physical attributes.
Broxham understands his unique achievement, but puts some of it down to good fortune.
“(Regular player movement is) the cutthroat nature of the business and restrictions with the salary cap," Broxham said. "With all the foreigners, you can only bring in so many players and you’re limited with money.
“Some players get their noses out of joint pretty easy and would rather move than stick it out for a month or two.
“I do see a lot of successful players who just needed a change and it made a big difference. Sometimes it’s not so negative.”
The match - as these contests often do - arrives at a superbly auspicious time for Broxham. He turns 30 today, and will reach the target against a club he's played 30 times.