In the Women’s State League Preliminary Final, the Western NSW Mariners FC take on St. George FC for a spot in the Grand Final.
Western NSW Mariners FC vs. St. George FC - Sunday 13 September, 3:45 at Valentine Sports Park 3 (Synthetic)
The Western NSW Mariners enjoyed a dominant season in Women’s State League, exemplified in their deserved Premiership. However, in last weekend’s Major Semi Final, they were beaten convincingly by Bankstown City FC.
Although they were able to hold onto level terms until halftime, an early red card in the second half saw the Mariners almost entirely overwhelmed by Bankstown, who claimed routine victory.
Although one could point to the red card as a turning point, it is undeniable that Bankstown City had the lion’s share of chances before the sending off, as they did after.
Despite returning to eleven players for kickoff this weekend, Western NSW will have to up their game considerably. St. George will be well primed to capitalise on any nerves.
In their Minor Semi-Final, St. George had to play deep into extra time to find a winner against the Gladesville Ravens. Although it wasn’t a dominant affair, the Saints demonstrated their determination, fitness and strong mentality.
With Georgia Koinis returning to complement Rachelle Wang up front, St. George have an attacking force to rival any. The duo were supported well by the midfield, and eventually Kate Emanuel who scored the winner with a superb burst down the left wing.
Defence will be their key issue, as they gave the Ravens plenty of opportunities to win the game before extra-time; perhaps a little lucky that the Gladesville attack wasn’t at its most efficacious.
The Mariners, conversely, will be looking to sort out their offensive unit, who struggled to break down Bankstown on the weekend. Before going down to ten players, they dominated large spells of possession in the first half, but were rarely able to convert this into anything dangerous in the final third.
The two sides have played each other three times this season, with the Mariners winning two and St. George the other.
This weekend’s Preliminary Final should prove a tense, though exciting battle between two sides who have played consistently good football all season.
Source FNSW website -by Daniel Palmer, Women’s State League Reporter
Also note our U15 Girls take on Western NSW Mariners FC in the Preliminary Final at a 10am KO.