5 things to look forward to: City v Newcastle

A quick turnaround

After not much football for Rado Vidosic’s squad over the last month, the games are now once again coming thick and fast as they were at the start of the season.

We saw plenty of City football early in season 2020/21 with a tough draw given to the reigning double winners right out of the gate.

There’ll be just two days between games when we once again take to the pitch this Sunday night, and the quick turnaround will be welcomed by the squad who are eager to bounce back after Thursday night’s 0-4 loss to the Wanderers.

Second last home match of the season

As it often does, the W-League season has flown by and we are now currently facing out second last home game of the season.

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Our foray into the South East continues as we’ll host Newcastle at Kingston Heath – the home of Bentleigh Greens.

We’ll then wrap up our season with back-to-back matches against Perth, the home leg being our final match of the season on Thursday 25 March at Frank Holohan Reserve.

Further opportunities for youngsters

We’ve seen the emergence of Tori Tumeth in her first W-League season, the defender having played every game of the campaign.

Former Brisbane duo Leah Davidson and Hollie Palmer have both been constant features of the midfield throughout season 2020/21 and we are starting to see even more opportunities for our younger players.

After coming off the bench to make her debut a few games ago, Naomi Chinnama has continued to perform strongly and has been rewarded with back-to-back starts.

We’ve also had a couple of looks at Lia Muldeary coming off the bench, with Vidosic hinting in his mid-week press conference that a starting berth may not be too far away for the 18-year-old.

Who takes the gloves?

While the result wasn’t what we were after on Thursday night, City fans in attendance at Frank Holohan Reserve still witnessed plenty of history.

Not only was it the Club’s first professional match in the South East, Melissa Barbieri also became the oldest player to ever appear in the W-League.

She pulled off a few strong trademark saves and the scoreline really didn’t do her performance in goal justice.

With Teagan Micah ruled out of this fixture, City on Saturday announced the signing of 17-year-old goalkeeper Sophia Varley which gives Vidosic another option between the sticks.

Varley has been training with City all season so will be ready if called upon but it will be interesting to see who gets the nod to take the gloves.

A first meeting with the Jets for the season

It’s taken some time but we’ll finally take on Newcastle for the first time this season on Sunday.

We were all set to play the Jets back in February but Melbourne’s snap five-day lockdown through that fixture into chaos.

All the best efforts were made to get the game played but after touching down in Melbourne, the Newcastle squad was quickly turned around and on a plane home.

It hasn’t been the smoothest season for the Jets, currently sitting on seven points after nine games.

A City win will see it equal that points tally, although the Melbourne team still has a lot of work to do in making up the goal difference.

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