Match Preview: Skipper Rigby eyeing ‘great opportunity’ against Victory

Glory v Canberra - Tash Rigby challenge

Skipper Natasha Rigby believes that the momentum Glory have built up from their last two Westfield W-League performances will enable them to get the better of reigning Premiers Melbourne Victory at Dorrien Gardens on Saturday (kick-off at 7.15pm, tickets HERE).

The women in purple backed up a home draw with Canberra United by producing a gutsy display away at Melbourne City last time out.

And although they were ultimately edged out 1-0 by the ladder-leaders, Rigby felt that the playing group drew plenty of positives from the game.

“After the game, it didn’t feel like we lost because we went out and played so well against them,” she said.

“As a team and as individuals, I think we were all a bit nervous going into that game, but come half-time, we were thinking that we could win it.

“If you think about it, we probably had the most shots on goal and looked the most dangerous we’ve been all season.

“We’re starting to gel, which is awesome.”

In terms of Saturday, meanwhile, Glory will be renewing acquaintances with a Victory side against whom they enjoyed a couple of epic tussles last term and Rigby is backing the hosts to come out on top.

“The vibe is really good coming into the Victory game,” she said.

“They [Victory] haven’t reached the levels they hit last year, but they do still have an awesome squad, with [Natasha] Dowie up front who is always super-dangerous.

“They will be a tough team to play against, but with the momentum that we have and the way we’re growing and building, I think this is a great opportunity to get a win.”

At a personal level, the club’s new skipper is relishing her leadership role.

“It’s a little bit more pressure than just being a player, but I feel I’ve got such an amazing group of girls around me,” she said.

“I’ve got the full support of every single one of them.

“There’s more responsibility in terms of, if the dynamic is off or the feeling in the team isn’t right, it’s up to me to pick up on that and do something about it.

“Now that the internationals have settled in a bit and everyone is getting to know how everyone else plays and their personalities and so on, we’re really bouncing off each other and you can see that on the field.”

And having seen long-term teammate Kim Carroll score for the first time in Glory colours against Canberra, does Rigby have a celebration planned for as and when she bags her own maiden Westfield W-League goal?

“Kim said she needs to work on her goal celebration because she had no idea what to do!” she said.

“She just started running and bumping into people!

“In terms of me scoring, I think it’ll probably be an over-hit cross that ends up going in and I’m just going to have to come up with something epic for a celebration!”

Match Details

Saturday, 28 December 2019

Perth Glory v Melbourne Victory

Dorrien Gardens, Perth

Kick-Off: 7:15pm (Local)(10:15pm (AEDT))

Referee: Isabella Blaess

Assistant Referee 1: Matthew Southern

Assistant Referee 2: Arvin Shanmuganathan

Fourth Official: Josh Mannella

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

Perth Glory Squad: 1.Eliza CAMPBELL (gk), 2.Sarah CARROLL, 3.Kim CARROLL, 4.Ayesha NORRIE, 5.Shannon MAY, 6.Arianna ROMERO, 7.CELIA, 8.Morgan ANDREWS, 9.Crystal THOMAS, 10.Julia SARDO, 11.Leticia MCKENNA, 12.Jenna ONIONS, 14.Caitlin DOEGLAS, 19.Hana LOWRY, 21.Morgan AQUINO (gk), 24.Natasha RIGBY (c), 28.Katarina JUKIC

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 12.Jenna ONIONS (promoted), 19.Hana LOWRY (promoted)

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: Nil

Melbourne Victory squad: 1.Casey DUMONT (gk), 2.Rosie SUTTON, 3.Teigen ALLEN, 4.Emily MENGES, 6.Haley HANSON, 8.Angie BEARD, 9.Natasha DOWIE (c), 10.Jenna McCORMICK, 11.Darian JENKINS, 13.Polly DORAN, 14.Melina AYRES, 15.Amy JACKSON, 16.Annalie LONGO, 19.Lia PRIVITELLI, 30.Teagan MICAH (gk)

Ins: Nil

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 5.Laura BROCK (foot), 17.Alex GUMMER (quad)