t might be unlucky 13 for some, but the teams in National Premier League 2 Womens, hope they might hit the jackpot this weekend, as APIA and Central Coast make for a hotly anticipated Match of the Round; SD Raiders and Sydney Olympic want to keep winning; and the rest of the mid-table continue to jockey for position.
Match of the Round: APIA Leichhardt Tigers vs Central Coast Mariners, Sunday 3rd June, 7pm, Lambert Park
This week’s Match of the Round is a tantalizing prospect, we have second taking on third, two of the best attacks coming together as they finish off round 13, under lights at Lambert Park, with a mouth-watering contest.
Two high-power offenses bring some form into Sunday night – both potted the bottom two sides in National Premier Leagues 2 Womens, for 11 and 10 goals respectively as Candice Phelan and Ash Palombi continued their sparkling form.
The A-team weren’t the only ones that like when a plan comes together. Matteo Maiorana couldn’t have asked for a better start with three of his four new recruits in the window, headlined by Yadira Renfigo’s hat-trick. Their added firepower alongside some defensive reinforcement has the Tigers primed for a tilt at the Championship.
Central Coast has just chugged along this season, the yellow and navy have only tasted defeat twice – to Sydney Olympic and SD Raiders – and have the hottest scorer in the competition, the aforementioned Phelan with a talented cast behind her in Jordan Evans, Jade Mcatemney and Melissa Swinfield to combat the Tigers.
For a final cherry on top of this footballing sundae, these two sides met on a cold Thursday night a few weeks back, and it was a 3-2 thriller, so if Sunday night is anything like that, strap yourselves in for some exciting football.
Marconi Stallions vs Nepean FC, Sunday 3rd June, 3pm, Marconi Stadium
These teams like the m4 during peak hour, are stuck in the mid-table logjam of NPL2, the two direct rivals clash this Sunday afternoon at Marconi, looking to jump into the open fifth spot on the ladder.
Both teams come into the game off losses – Nepean FC once again were left frustrated against Inter Lions while the Stallions pushed Olympic FC, but fell to a close loss 3-2 which left the top five the same as it entered.
Alan Tasses swung the axe last time they tasted defeat, might he do the same to combat a professional Stallions outfit. The defense, led by Desiree Vassallo and keeper, Danielle Bartels need to be on guard and if they can remain compact then find Stefanie Trovato up-top they can possibly move themselves out of traffic.
Remarkably for the rollercoaster season they’ve had, Marconi are right in the mix. They sit a point back from the Ravens, with only three home games after Sunday, they need to make the most of their home games, especially as these two played out a 2-2 draw a few months back.
For them Hannah Voloder and top-scorers Demelza Howard and Jessica Beale need to fire as much like Nepean, they need to find consistency to back their move into the top five.
Western NSW Mariners vs Gladesville Ravens, Sunday 3rd June, 3pm, Sir Jack Brabham Park
Gladesville can feel the teams breathing down their neck, after their recent losses, they make a second trip out to the golden west, Sunday, to face a resurgent Western NSW Mariners.
Western NSW Mariners felt the release of pressure themselves, getting back onto the win column, Poorsha McPhillamy’s brace enough to down the students while the Ravens were clipped by a SD Raiders barrage.
The Mariners have leaked 16 goals in the last few weeks, so they looked to shore up their defense after they hit the lead, which would please Josh Ward. Hopefully they can use that positive result and discipline helps them create a bigger headache for the mid-table sides, starting with Gladesville.
Between two sides that are at the wrong end of the table, Sunday represents a chance for joy in the season – also for Gladesville, a chance to discover the form that rocketed them to near the top, starting with finding the net otherwise it might be a long trip home.
Southern Branch FC vs Inter Lions FC, Sunday 3rd June, 3pm, South Nowra Football Complex
Whose that coming over the hill? Is it the Lions! It is, the Inter side has sprung into action, now before their trip down to Nowra, they have the teams above them looking over their shoulder for the roaring Lions.
It isn’t a game that will win any Archibald prizes for best picture, but Inter playing some slick football has grown into the season, they took the licks against a tough Nepean FC side, then Kirilee Cook struck to move them five points behind Gladesville in fifth.
Much of the fantastic work that Inter has done in recent weeks starts through Angela Gardner and Taylor Mikaelian, the latter threaded a perfect ball for Cook’s winner, they feed the hungry forward line in possibly, giving their goal difference, a healthy boost.
For the home side – it has been a rough first half to the season. If they can find a nugget of solace, they picked up some points late in the last season, so might throw a spanner into the works for some finals chasing sides.
St George FC vs SD Raiders, Sunday 3rd June, 3pm, St George Stadium
SD Raiders travel down south to St George Stadium, full of form and confidence, aiming to consolidate their fourth position, taking on the downtrodden Saints on Sunday afternoon.
In a weekend of fantastic debuts – Elizabeth O’Reilly had a pretty good one, opening the scoring with a volley and helped rally the defense in back-to-back clean sheets, as they steel themselves for tougher challenges down the road.
The Raiders showed character, with injuries earlier this season, to keep themselves in contention. Granted it helps to have a pair of prolific scorers in Samantha Nagy and Cassidy Chidgey, as the south-west side will take some beating in the finals.
St George continue to walk down the lonely road of trying to find victories. It can be tough, but if they can upset the applecart and get themselves off both the duck egg and the bottom of the ladder.
UNSW FC vs Sydney Olympic FC, Sunday 3rd June, 3pm, Valentine Sports Park #3
The premiers continue to remain the NPL2 Womens end boss, as they got through the first half of the season undefeated, now they head to football headquarters, to face a sputtering UNSW FC team on Sunday afternoon.
A pair of Danielle Calvi goals with a Kristy Rohrer effort sandwiched between handed Olympic their 11th success of the season, 3-2 against Marconi while UNSW continued to spiral to their fourth straight loss, against Western NSW Mariners 2-1.
UNSW FC has the knack that they drift in and out of games too often, which has them in 9th coming into the weekend. Their early season form has crashed and the golden goose of finals football moves out of reach, as Jelen and his team search for answers, which is tough to find against the league leaders.
Finding the weakness in the Olympic line-up amounts almost to finding needles in a haystack. They possess quality which has been gushed about plenty in this column, and the management at the famous club will have more trophies in sight as the months roll on.
Source FNSW website -By Justin Davies