Melbourne Heart new boy Dean Heffernan has his fingers crossed that the brand new Melbourne derby will be a rivalry of passion and feeling.

The former Central Coast Mariners left-back spent the past few months on loan with English League One club Huddersfield Town and he hopes that the Heart versus Melbourne Victory derby is as big as the Town versus Leeds United version in West Yorkshire.

"It's a great sporting city, and the people there really get behind their teams," said Heffernan.

"The Melbourne derby is a new thing in the A-League, and it will be one of the highlights of the season.

"Playing in the Town-Leeds game (it finished 2-2 at the Galpharm in February) was a fantastic experience.

"If the Melbourne match-up generates 20% of the feeling the West Yorkshire derby does, it will be brilliant."