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Feb 17, 2022   |  3:02PM AET

Match Preview – Epakis won’t put limit on Glory’s ambitions

Match Preview – Epakis won’t put limit on Glory’s ambitions

He may be keener to focus on the process and the performances, but Glory Head Coach Alex Epakis is certainly not playing down Glory’s chances of playing Liberty A-League Finals football this year.

Click HERE to view his full pre-match media conference.

The women in purple take on third-placed Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park on Saturday (kick-off at 1.50pm WST) knowing that a win would move them level on points with Adelaide United who currently occupy fourth spot.

And with most of the current top five set to meet each other in the final three rounds of the regular season, Epakis feels that Glory remain firmly in the hunt to extend their campaign.

“In my mind, we’ve got an unlimited amount of potential individually and collectively,” he said.

“Within the group, we’ve got a really great balance of players who are all contributing towards success and it’s really exciting to be a part of.

“We want to finish this season as strongly as we can and I don’t want to put a limit on what that might look like.

“Whether that’s top four or not, we just want to make sure that we finish with three really strong performances and hopefully pick up good points along the way.

“If it’s enough, great, but we’re going on to something much bigger than that as well and hopefully next year, we’ll have even more success.

“A lot can happen in the next couple of weeks and I don’t want to write off our chances by any stretch of the imagination right now.

“As a group, we’re still working towards playing the best match we possibly can.

“If we can try and do that over the next three fixtures, regardless of the opposition, then we give ourselves every chance of [making] the top four.

“But we’re more focused on the day-to-day training and the weekend matches than the equation of the top four for now.

“There’s a lot of football to be played.”

The Head Coach was pleased to be able to run the rule over Saturday’s opponents in their midweek draw with leaders Sydney FC and he’s anticipating a fascinating clash in the Victorian capital.

“Last night, it was good to have the opportunity to watch them against a good opposition,” he said.

“We saw some really good strengths of theirs; they have a fantastic front three who can create and convert chances with very little space, but then we also saw a couple of little things in their structure which hopefully we can take advantage of and attack some of those gaps.

“They’re an experienced team and Jeff [Hopkins – Head Coach] and those players have been together for a number of years now.

“I’m expecting a game where two teams are going into it both knowing that they really need three points.

“So as a result, it’s going to be the team that manages the critical moments better which will walk away with the three points in my opinion.”

In terms of team news, meanwhile, Epakis reported that he has no fresh injury concerns to contend with ahead of the Victory clash, but confirmed that a number of the squad have returned to Perth from the squad’s base in North Sydney.

Poppie Hooks and Tijan McKenna have headed back to attend school and Gemma Craine has also departed as she continues her recovery from a broken wrist.

“Every week we’re losing one or two, not because of COVID, but because they have to go back to WA for school or other commitments,” he said, “… but everyone who was available in the last few fixtures will be available again this weekend.”

Saturday will mark the 24th overall meeting between Glory and the navy-and-whites, with the WA side having secured 10 wins and the Victorians 11.

The reigning Champions have picked up seven victories this term, but the two defeats they have suffered have both come at home.

#OneGlory