Melbourne City FC co-captain Jess Fishlock says maintaining a challenge was the key reason behind an altered formation in Sunday’s 1-0 win over Newcastle Jets.
City ventured out from its familiar 4-3-3 set-up as Beattie Goad struck before half time to secure Melbourne City FC’s eighth win of the season.
Head coach Joe Montemurro deployed a 3-4-3 formation in Newcastle with Steph Catley and Goad pushing forward as wing-backs while Amy Jackson slotted alongside Jen Beattie and Laura Alleway in the centre of defense.
Fishlock together with Aivi Luik held down the midfield as Kim Little lead the front third in between Larissa Crummer and Lisa De Vanna
“You see that we changed formation this week because we want to play and we want to win but also we want to challenge these girls. We ask them to play out of their comfort zone to see if they can adapt,” Fishlock said at full time.
“I think they did it well in the first half and you just see in the second half that we just weren’t as switched on and credit to Newcastle.
I felt that they had a good game plan and absolutely defended their box for their lives and we couldn’t break that down as easy as we have been in the past.”
The result proved to be the most difficult for City to date as a well organized Newcastle Jets outfit restricted the visitors to just the one goal.
Both sides entered the contest with the best defensive records in the competition, conceding three goals each after eight rounds.
Breaking down a stubborn Jets provided a new challenge for the visitors as Fishlock explained.
“The thing I you’ve always got to learn. You cant win seven our of seven or eight out of eight and think you game is perfect or everything is great because that’s not necessarily what it is.
“You’ve still got to learn different roles, different positions, different types of roles and different responsibilities. That’s what we want to get for the girls here too and for Australia, it’s all about developing and that’s what we are here to do.
"It’s good for us, we still learn, still got lots of things to learn and that’s the beauty of it."
City will return to CB Smith Reserve this Sunday, facing last year's premiers Perth Glory.
Montemurro's side secured a 4-0 win the last time the two teams met earlier in the season.