Match Preview: Epakis impressed by squad’s resilience ahead of Melbourne trip

WWL - Glory v Melbourne City - team line up

Glory Head Coach Alex Epakis has been hugely impressed by the strength of character his young squad have shown in the build-up to yet another testing, two-game road trip which begins on Thursday when they face Melbourne City at Frank Holohan Reserve (kick-off at 4.05pm WST).

The women in purple will then tackle Melbourne Victory on Sunday as they look to round off what has been an extremely testing Westfield W-League campaign on a high note.

And Epakis feels that their attitude gives them a good chance of doing exactly that.

“The chaos of this year is going to set us up so well for next year and beyond, but we’ve also got the focus of putting on the best performance we possibly can in the last two matches [of this season],” he said.

“It’s difficult circumstances again as we’re backing up very quickly and have two games in quick succession and there are some players who won’t be able to attend the matches because of the travel in midweek.

“So there are a few factors at play, but nonetheless, this is the type of resilience that I’m really enjoying seeing from the group.”

The two sides will certainly need no introduction having met at Dorrien Gardens just last week and although Glory were edged out 1-0 on that occasion, Epakis saw enough to convince him that his side are capable of avenging that defeat on Thursday.

“Melbourne City are quite an experienced team,” he said.

“They have a lot of players with strong W-League and international experience and they are well set up.

“But in saying that, you could see in last week’s match that our young players, to an extent, maybe caught them out a little at times.

“We’re hoping to capitalise and expand on that on Thursday.”

City come into the game sitting well adrift of the top four having secured just three wins this term, but they have enjoyed the better of this fixture over the years, claiming six wins to Glory’s three.

Match Details

Thursday, 25 March 2021

Melbourne City FC v Perth Glory

Frank Holohan Reserve, Endeavour Hills

Kick-Off: 4:05 pm (WST)(7:05pm (Local))

Referee: Kate Jacewicz

Assistant Referee 1: Danielle Anderson

Assistant Referee 2: Janelle Sammut

Fourth Official: Caitlin Williams

TV Broadcast:  Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 4:00pm (AEDT), Sky Sport 7 (New Zealand), Kayo Sports (www.kayosports.com.au) and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers

Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #MCYvPER

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

Melbourne City FC squad: 5.Tori TUMETH, 6.Noor ECKHOFF, 8.Hollie PALMER,  9.Alex CHIDIAC, 10.Chinatsu KIRA, 11.Rhali DOBSON, 12.Harriet WITHERS, 13.Sarah CAIN, 14.Margot ROBINNE, 15.Emma CHECKER (c), 17.Samantha JOHNSON, 18.Leah DAVIDSON, 19.Tyla-Jay VLAJNIC, 20.Lia MULDEARY, 21.Jenna McCORMICK, 22.Naomi THOMAS-CHINNAMA, 23.Melissa BARBIERI (gk), 30.Sophia VARLEY (gk).

**2 to be omitted**

In: 8.Hollie PALMER (promoted), 12.Harriet WITHERS (returns from injury)

Out: Nil

Unavailable: 1.Teagan MICAH (knee), 3.Teigen ALLEN (foot), 4.Chelsea BLISSETT (ACL), 16.Sofia SAKALIS (ACL)

Perth Glory squad: 1.Lily ALFELD (GK), 2.Sarah CARROLL, 4.Natasha RIGBY (C), 5.Deborah-Anne DE LA HARPE, 6.Tijan MCKENNA, 7.Elizabeth ANTON, 8.Hana LOWRY, 9.Malia STEINMETZ, 10.Alexia MORENO, 11.Patricia CHARALAMBOUS, 12.Sarah MORGAN, 14.Caitlin DOEGLAS, 16.Isabella WALLHEAD, 17.Marianna TABAIN, 20.Rebecca BENNETT (GK), 23.Katarina JUKIC

Ins: 11.Patricia CHARALAMBOUS (promoted)

Outs: 13.Jamie-Lee GALE (omitted)

Unavailable: 3.Gemma CRAINE (hamstring – season)