Upbeat Epakis sees plus side of fixture changes

Glory Liberty A-League Head Coach Alex Epakis believes that the latest twist in this season’s fixture scheduling could benefit his in-form side.

The women in purple have made a perfect start to the 2021/22 campaign, taking six points from their opening two games against Brisbane Roar.

And while the postponement of Saturday’s scheduled Round 3 game against Canberra United will prevent Glory from potentially returning to the summit of the embryonic Liberty A-League ladder, Epakis feels there is definitely a plus side for his squad.

“It’s a mixed blessing,” he said, “because although we’re on a fantastic run with really good momentum and I know the players and staff just want to be playing week in, week out, we have picked up a few niggles in the last two matches and it just gives us time to overcome those and iron out any kinks in what we’re doing.

“So come our next match in early January, we’ll be in a better place.”

Epakis felt that his charges showed great character and resolve to grab late winners in both meetings with Roar and those were elements he emphasised when addressing the players after each game.

“It was just about having absolute belief in what we’re doing and staying in the game for the whole match, competing and players coming off the bench and doing their job,” he said.

“It was a mix of all those types of messages and showing that once we do all of those things, we’re in every single match regardless of the opposition.

“Brisbane were a good team, but the fact that we were able to grind out two really important results late on gives us as a group so much confidence about what we’re doing and I think it sets a perfect foundation going forward.”

On the subject of what the future holds, Glory’s Head Coach is resigned to the fact that the squad will have to spend an extended period on the east coast until the easing of WA’s border restrictions comes into effect on February 5th.

But he feels that a run of away games could further unite what is already a close-knit squad.

“That togetherness and time away may prove to be even more powerful for this group than it would be if it was a normal schedule,” he said.

“We all know we have a job to do this year and to be all together in the same place really focusing on that might be even more beneficial for us all.”

An announcement confirming Glory’s revised Liberty A-League and Isuzu Ute A-League fixtures is expected on Wednesday.