Melbourne City's first double-header of the season is set for an electric start when Patrick Kisnorbo's W-League side takes on Victory in a blockbuster Melbourne Derby at AAMI Park. Here's all you need to know about Friday's clash...
See you at the match!
Don’t miss our first double header of the season! See our record-breaking Women’s team do battle in the Melbourne Derby at 5.20pm, before our Men’s team take on Sydney FC in a top-of-the-table clash at 7:50pm.
Click here to buy your tickets for the match!
For those playing at home, the match will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 501 and SBS VICELAND. You can also keep up with all the action as it happens by following our official Twitter account @MelbCityWFC.
Set the scene for me…
There’s no bigger way to kick-start a weekend of W-League fixtures than with a Melbourne Derby.
City returns home to AAMI Park for the first of four exciting double-headers this season with an opportunity to set the record straight after a disappointing Round 1 defeat to Perth Glory last Friday.
Many teams would have reason to sound the alarm after a humbling 4-1 reverse, but there were plenty of positives to take out of the performance that will give City confidence for the rest of the campaign.
Patrick Kisnorbo side controlled possession, hit the post and created countless opportunities to find the back of the net. Prolifigacy ensued as big chances were missed, as Perth took full advantage with a three-goal blitz in the final 15 minutes to stun the reigning champions.
Matildas star Kyah Simon was a shining light on her return to W-League action and equalised with a stunning strike after Perth took the lead, while American forward Ashley Hatch looked right at home in the final third during her first appearance on Australian shores.
But it's at the other end of the pitch where City must improve, with American defender Lauren Barnes insisting her side is determined to bounce back from Friday’s defeat.
“We’re just trying to focus on ourselves,” she said. “We’ve put the last game behind us and there’s been a really good vibe within the team. I think we’ve actually become stronger as a result.”
“The Derby is just fun. It doesn’t matter about anything else – any team line-up or preparation – in these games you just have to go out there and show up, because that’s what it’s all about. “
“It’s the beauty of the sport. Anything can happen and we just have to show up and put our chances away.”
Meanwhile, Victory head into Friday’s clash full of confidence after overcoming title contenders Canberra United 2-1 at Epping Stadium last Sunday.
English international Natasha Dowie carried on her goal-scoring form into the new campaign, sealing all three points for Jeff Hopkins’ side after Christine McNabb’s opener was cancelled out by Michelle Heyman.
As is so often the case in Derby clashes, the form card goes out the window. Both sides, who enter Friday’s encounter on the back of contrasting results, know that three crucial points are at stake in a bid to build early season momentum.
Bragging rights are on the line once again, and the scene is set for arguably the most highly anticipated W-League Melbourne Derby yet.
What’s the team news?
City welcomes goalkeeper Melissa Hudson into the match day squad as an injury-replacement for counterpart Emily Shields, who is out for an indefinite period with a broken wrist.
Head Coach Kisnorbo confirmed in his pre-match press conference that first choice goalkeeper Lydia Williams is available for selection against Victory, after the Matildas shot-stopper missed last week’s season opener against Perth Glory.
Kyah’s ready for her home debut!
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Secure your seat to all four double-headers at AAMI Park and two home W-League matches at CB Smith Reserve - because nothing beats being there.
Westfield W-League Round 2
Friday 3 November 2017
Melbourne City FC vs Melbourne Victory
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne
Kick-off: 5:20pm (AEDT)