A week after securing a berth in the 2017/18 Y-League Grand Final, Melbourne City’s Youth squad will return to action on Saturday as they travel across the Nullarbor to take on the Perth Glory.
City staged a thrilling late comeback to defeat Adelaide United 4-3 last week to secure their progression to back-to-back Y-League deciders.
Despite the Reds employing a suffocating press that saw them at times dominating the Citizens, City headed into the half time break up 2-1, with goals from Braedyn Crowley and Ramy Najjarine sandwiching a strike by Adelaide’s Carlo Armiento.
With the pressure from Adelaide’s high line continuing into the second, City’s unbeaten run this season would soon come under serious jeopardy, when Head Coach Joe Palatsides’ side gave away 49th and 70th minute penalties that were duly converted by Reds captain Charlie Deveraux.
With fatigue beginning to negate the effects of the press however, City would rally, and were rewarded for their efforts when a 76th minute Adelaide own goal and a magnificent effort by Dylan Pierias in the 80th minute put them ahead 4-3 and secured the win.
Speaking after the win, Palatsides spoke of the pride he had in his squad for reaching another Y-League Grand Final:
“I think it’s a great achievement to get them in,” he said
“We talk about the development of footballers and that’s our key goal, but at the end of the day you have to be able to win”
Opponents Perth Glory will be well rested for this week’s contest, having had a bye during the last round.
The Glory last played in Round 6 of the competition, when they drew 2-2 with Adelaide United at the Marden Sports Complex in Adelaide, with Chok Dau and Yagoub Mustafa getting on the scoresheet for the Glory.
The Glory last played a home game in Round 5 back on December 17, when they went down 3-2 to the Melbourne Victory.
In selection news, City will be without Connor Metcalfe and Ramy Najjarine for this week’s game; the two scholarship players having been called up to Warren Joyce’s senior side for this weekends A-League match against the Central Coast Mariners in Gosford.
With City coming off a short week, and having already secured their place in the Y-League Grand Final, Palatsides has also given strong indications during the week that there may be further changes made to his side:
“I think we’ll tweak a few things, but I don’t think we’ll change the style of play at all,” he said
“We’ve got a large squad here that hasn’t played as much and I think that all the players deserve credit, not just the ones on the park, because they also help prepare the team.
“I think they’ll be rewarded with some game time as well.
“Some of our [first team players] will be rested, but we’ll make sure they have a good balance of games leading up to the Grand Final.”
Foxtel Y-League Round 8
Saturday, 13 January 2018
Perth Glory v Melbourne City
Venue: Dorrien Gardens, Perth, Western Australia
Kick-off: 12:30pm AEDT – 9.30am Local Time