Melbourne City Women’s midfielder Amy Jackson says her side are eager to lock horns with sister club Manchester City, when the two teams square off in Abu Dhabi for the FBMA Challenge.On Thursday morning (12:50am AEST), history will be made when the two teams take the field for the very first Women’s match between members of the City Football Group, for the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy (FBMA) Challenge.
After experiencing the euphoria of a historic Premiership and Championship double in the Westfield W-League this season, Jackson is relishing the prospect of facing a star-studded Manchester City side in the midst of their pre-season preparations.
“We’re in a very different phase compared to Manchester City; they’re in their pre-season at the moment, training quite heavily and working on their formation and preparing for their season ahead,” Jackson said.
“Whereas we have just come off our season and without a few of our key players [who are away on international duty, or returned to club football] we’re just spending time getting used to each other again, working on a little bit of formation, fitness and getting some touches on the ball.
“We’re really looking forward to the game and I think it will be an exciting opportunity to showcase individually what we can do, but also just let Manchester City and everyone else know what we are about.”
Having arrived in the U.A.E capital on Saturday for their post-season training camp, Joe Montemurro’s side have embraced the opportunity to enjoy the warm weather and interact with some of the country’s brightest young prospects in the company of their Manchester counterparts.
“We arrived in Abu Dhabi on Saturday morning and familiarised ourselves with the Hotel and the surroundings and then we had a training session in the afternoon,” Jackson said. “We were lucky enough to meet up with the Manchester City women’s team and did a player appearance and met some of the local girls through FBMA and aabar.
“We interacted with the under-14 UAE team and it was really cool to be able to share stories and also to get their insight into the game and also what the culture is like over here.
Jackson will provide viewers with a unique insight into the historic clash by wearing a microphone during the match; an experience the midfielder suggests could be incorporated into W-League matches in the future.
Manchester City's dedicated video channel CityTV will package the content and provide it to viewers, after the match.
“It’s going to be intriguing; when I’m playing I’m fully focused,” she said.
“I’m curious to see how much I talk during a game and it could actually help me for future games but also just to try out some new equipment and see if we might be able to do this in the future for some W-League games and really get some new exposure for women’s football.”
You can watch the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy Challenge from 12:50am AEST on Thursday morning right here on melbournecityfc.com.au. Click here for more information.