The PGFC Academy First Team return to Football West NPL action on Saturday when Balcatta will provide the opposition at E&D Litis Stadium (kick off at 3.00pm).
The youngsters started their season with a narrow, 2-1 defeat against Floreat Athena last week, but more than played their part in a lively contest.
A tight first half ended with Floreat being reduced to ten men after former Glory midfielder Dean Evans was sent off, but they rallied to take the lead early in the second half when Jon Stynes headed home Robert Petkov’s cross.
And although Richard Garcia’s side drew level through Gomo Dukuly on the hour-mark, Petkov’s subsequent strike ultimately sealed the win for the reigning Night Series champions.
While understandably unhappy with the result, Glory midfielder Jack Leech drew plenty of positives from the performance.
“It was a great hit-out for us to start the new season,” he said, “and we were unlucky not to take something from the game.
“It was an intense and aggressive game, a really good challenge for us and I thought we performed well. We played some good football, but also competed physically with a strong Floreat side and that attitude from the players was outstanding.
“Obviously it was disappointing to not get anything from the game, but overall it was a very good start to the season for us.”
Leech went on to confirm that the youngsters are desperate to bounce back on Saturday.
“The boys are all super-excited for this weekend,” he said. “We have been working hard all week this week to prepare us for the game.
“We played Balcatta in the Night Series, so know what to expect and I think we have come up with a gameplan that will see us produce a great team performance and get the three points.”
Head Coach Richard Garcia, meanwhile, also felt that Glory deserved something from the game at Floreat and is expecting Balcatta to provide another stern test.
“I thought we were unlucky to come home empty-handed last week,” he said, “but the players gave everything on the night. We’ll play worse and win games this season, but that’s football. Overall, we have been pleased with how the side has adapted to senior football.
“On Saturday we’re expecting another tough game against an experienced Balcatta side who are coming off a win last week, but we’re ready for the challenge.”
Saturday’s action at E&D Litis Stadium is set to get underway at 11am when the Under-18s are in action, with the Under-20s then kicking off at 1pm ahead of the First Team taking centre stage at 3pm.
On Sunday, meanwhile, Glory’s younger Academy age-groups face Quinns FC at Riverlinks Park in Clarkson.
The Under-14s and Under-15s both have 9am starts, with the Under-13s and Under-16s following at 10.30am.
Do get along and lend our youngsters your support if you can and the very best of luck to everyone involved!
Football West NPL 2019 Season Round 2
PGFC v Balcatta
E&D Litis Stadium, Mount Hawthorn
Saturday March 23
18’s – 11.00am
20’s – 1.00pm
First Team – 3.00pm
Free entry for Perth Glory members