Match Preview: Despotovski expecting tough Jets test


Head Coach Bobby Despotovski is expecting another tough away test when his Glory side take on Newcastle Jets at No.2 Sportsground on Saturday (Kick off: 2.45pm WST).

The Jets are currently languishing in eighth place on the Westfield W-League ladder having won just twice this term.

But Craig Deans’ side held Glory to a 2-2 draw at Dorrien Gardens last month despite having Larissa Crummer sent off after just 26 minutes and Despotovski feels that they will again make life difficult for his second-placed charges.

“It’s always a hard game against Newcastle even though they are in a different position to where they were this time last year,” he said.

“Last year they were in the top four and now they’re out of it having had a couple of crucial injuries.

“Nevertheless, it’s going to be difficult. It’s a long journey and Nikki [Stanton] is suspended, so we’ll need to reshuffle the pack and be at our best to get anything out of the game.”

Glory will make the long trip east off the back of a hard-fought 1-0 win over old nemesis Canberra United and Despotovski was quick to point out the need to use that impressive result as a launchpad into the final quarter of the regular campaign.

“The win over Canberra means nothing if we don’t get three points against Newcastle and then Western Sydney in our next game after that,” he said.

“It’s so tight with six teams going for the top four.

“I was really pleased with the clean sheet against Canberra and to be fair, we’ve defended well in the last few games.

“The partnership between Kim [Carroll] and Katie [Naughton], along with the full-backs in Jamie-Lee [Gale] and Tash [Rigby], is working very well. They have been doing the job for us. “

The Newcastle clash will see Carroll mark a significant milestone in the form of her 100th Westfield W-League appearance and Despotovski was unstinting in his praise of the Matildas defender.

“Kim is our vice-captain and is very experienced both in the W-League and obviously with the Matildas,” he said.

“She’s crucial for us not only as part of the defensive unit, but also in terms of the leadership she brings. Jamie-Lee next to her, for example, has not played many W-League games, so Kim needs to organise and think for two at times and help guide her along.

“She’s been fantastic for us this year and reaching 100 games is a great achievement.”

The suspended Stanton is the only notable absentee from Glory’s squad, but the Jets are set to be without key striker Katie Stengel (foot) and fellow-import Taylor Smith who unfortunately sustained a serious knee injury when the two teams last met.

Match Details

Saturday, 12 January 2019

Newcastle Jets v Perth Glory

Venue: No.2 Sportsground, Newcastle

Kick-Off: 2:45PM WST (5:45PM Local)

Referee: Isabella Blaess

Assistant Referee 1: Ellie Hayes

Assistant Referee 2: Avrol Beecham

Fourth Official: Katie Patterson

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS (www.foxsports.com.au) and My Football Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers

Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash tag #NEWvPER

To purchase tickets visit www.w-league.com.au/tickets

Newcastle Jets FC squad: 2.Hannah BREWER, 4.Libby COPUS-BROWN, 5.Arin WRIGHT, 6.Cassidy DAVIS, 7.Gema SIMON, 11.Cortnee VINE, 12.Tara ANDREWS, 15.Renee POUNTNEY, 17.Jenna KINGSLEY, 18.Clare WHEELER, 19.Pana PETRATOS, 20.Claire COELHO (gk), 22.Larissa CRUMMER, 25.Teigan COLLISTER, 28.Britt ECKERSTROM (gk), 32.Tessa TAMPLIN

**one to be omitted**

Ins: 11.Cortnee VINE (return from injury), 32.Tessa TAMPLIN (promoted)

Outs: 10.Emily VAN EGMOND (ankle – 6 weeks)

Unavailable: 9.Katie STENGEL (foot – 4 weeks), 14.Taylor SMITH (knee – indefinite)

Perth Glory squad: 1.Eliza CAMPBELL (gk), 3.Kim CARROLL, 4.Alyssa MAUTZ , 5.Shannon MAY, 9.Rachel HILL, 10.Jacynta GALABADAARACHCHI, 11.Leticia McKENNA, 12.Jenna ONIONS, 13.Jamie-Lee GALE, 14.Caitlin DOEGLAS, 15.Alexia MORENO, 17.Liana COOK, 20.Sam KERR (c), 21.Morgan AQUINO (gk) 22.Abbey GREEN, 24.Natasha RIGBY, 25.Katie NAUGHTON

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 15.Alexia MORENO (promoted), 17.Liana COOK (promoted), 22.Abbey GREEN (promoted)

Outs: 7.Nicole STANTON (suspended – 1 week)

Unavailable: Nil