The Women’s State League table is starting to adopt a distinguishable form after nearly six rounds of football, with the Western NSW Mariners establishing a firm lead over the rest.
But there is no time better than the present for other clubs to put their hands up as strong contenders in this first half of the season.
Parramatta FC vs. Mt. Druitt Town Rangers FC - Sunday 17 May, 3PM at Melita Stadium
Parramatta faced a difficult journey to Glen Willow Stadium in round five, where they were defeated comfortably by the Western NSW Mariners who occupy first place. This was always going to be a major challenge, and the eventual loss will not deter their spirits coming into their round six clash against Mt. Druitt. The Rangers have played an extra game over Parramatta, yet sit below the home team on goal difference. In round five, the Rangers suffered a heavy handed loss at home to Bankstown City and will be nervous coming into this weekend’s fixture. This Sunday presents a good opportunity for both teams to begin building some momentum in the middle stages of the season.
Western NSW Mariners FC vs. Gladesville Ravens - Sunday 17 May, 3PM at Proctor Park
This is perhaps the biggest fixture of the round, between first and second place on the table. The Western NSW Mariners have won all of their four opening fixtures, while the Ravens have won two and drawn another with a game in hand. The Ravens will be disappointed with their draw at home to St. George last Sunday and now have to backup this result with a long trip out to Proctor Park. The Mariners, conversely, will be buzzing with confidence and looking to establish a commanding eight point lead over the Ravens. After a tight start to the season against Bankstown, the Mariners have found their shooting boots, to compliment a strong defensive unit. The Ravens have demonstrated a tendency to concede early, but finish strongly; if they can show up in the first half as well as the second, they will prove the Mariners’ toughest challenge to date. It is likely that one of these teams will suffer their first loss of the season this Sunday, but both sides will likely be content with a draw.
St. George FC vs. Southern District SFA - Sunday 17 May, 3PM at St. George Soccer Stadium
St. George will be quietly happy about their performance in round five, away from home at Peel Park against the Ravens. They were arguably the better team in a 2-2 draw. St. George showed plenty of attacking prowess, and will be looking to run over a Southern Districts side who have struggled this season. Southern Districts, however, did enjoy their first win of the season in round five, where they comfortably beat the APIA Leichhardt Tigers 3-0. That being said, the Tigers have been beaten by bigger scores in their previous games, including by St. George. If Southern Districts come away with a win this Sunday, they will be making much more relevant a statement about their chances of success this Women’s State League season.
APIA Leichhardt Tigers vs. Bankstown City FC - Sunday 17 May, 6:45PM at Lambert Park
The Tigers have lost every game this season, yet to score a single goal. Needless to say, they will be far from confident coming into this fixture, against a Bankstown City side who have really hit their stride in the past couple of rounds. Despite a narrow loss to the Mariners in round one, Bankstown have followed up with two convincing victories in rounds two and five. Last week’s massive win against Mt. Druitt, away from home, was a major statement to the rest of the field about their squad’s talent this season. The Tigers will be delighted with a draw, while a win would appear a minor miracle on paper; the chances of which can never be underestimated in football. Bankstown will be content with nothing but three points, and some goal difference to boot; with one of the strongest attacking outfits in the league, Bankstown will be determined to score freely.
Source FNSW Website-by Daniel Palmer, Women’s State League Reporter