MATCH OF THE ROUND
Killarney v Southern & Ettalong
Round 5 WPL Match of the Round sees a huge game for both Killarney and Southern & Ettalong who currently both sit on 6 points.
Killarney biggest struggle this year has been to get on the scoresheet when trailing in a game. The Terriers are yet to score when they have lost a match but when they have scored first in a match, they have gone on to keep a clean sheet and win. Killarney have only managed to get on the scoresheet 4 times in 4 games which is tied second-worst in the WPL competition.
Killarney coach Adam Tait is very aware of the dangers Southern possess and expects the same from them heading into this weekend’s clash. “We are anticipating a hard-fought game from Southern. They have been quite consistent over the past few seasons and are always a hard test.”
Southern will look to get themselves back to winning ways after a disappointing 6-1 loss to Umina last weekend. Although Southern conceded 6 goals, the scoreline did not represent how close the game was. Southern will hold an advantage over Killarney coming into the weekend as they beat them 2-1 on the only instance the two sides faced last year.
Southern coach Augusto Terra says his side is excited for the challenge against a tough Killarney side. “There is no doubt that this is going to be a hard game for us, I watched one of their games during pre-season and I believe they have fast attackers and a good defensive system. It will be a very competitive game, but I believe we have been improving after every single game and we are ready for the challenge.”
Gosford v Woongarrah
Gosford looks to keep their fantastic unbeaten start to the season alive as they welcome Dave Hurley’s Woongarrah squad to Gavenlock Oval in round 5.
Gosford has been outstanding thus far in the 2021 WPL season, having only conceded 1 goal in all 4 games so far. This single goal came in round 1 against Wyong, since then the Dragons have gone on to win 3 straight games keeping a clean sheet and now hold the least number of goals conceded in the whole competition. Not only do Gosford have the best defence in the competition, but they are also ranked 2nd in goals for which goes to show how dominant this side is at both ends of the pitch.
Woongarrah has had quite a disappointing start to the season, after 4 round the Wildcats WPL squad are yet to score a goal in First Grade as they remain on 0 points and bottom of the table. Their closest result thus far this season was a 1-0 loss last week which must give the Woongarrah side confidence coming out of that game. Woongarrah fell to Gosford 4-2 when they faced last season and unfortunately for Woongarrah the test doesn’t get any easier this weekend as they face competition favourites away from home.
East Gosford v Wyong
In a big game for both clubs, East Gosford will look to get back to winning ways this weekend as their opposition Wyong is coming off their first win of the year and will hope to make it 2 in a row.
Jorge Chavez’s East Gosford squad has, unfortunately, had an influx of injuries which have left the Rams side struggling for consistency in recent weeks. The Rams started their year off with a perfect 2 wins from the opening 2 games and did not have a goal against their name but since then East Gosford has gone on to lose back-to-back games without scoring in either game. East Gosford will look to welcome back some players to their squad this weekend in hopes of getting back on track and winning 3 points at their home ground Hylton Moore Oval.
Despite a horror start to the season for Wyong who conceded 22 goals in their first 2 matches, a win away from home over East Gosford this weekend will see them go level with the Rams side on 6 points. Wyong picked up their first win since re-joining the WPL competition, in round 4 last week with a 3-2 win over Kariong. Although Wyong statistically has the worst defence in the competition conceding 27 goals in 4 games, their opposition has failed to find the back of the net in the last 2 games, expect Wyong to come out firing and try to take it to the Rams this Sunday.
Kanwal v Umina
Umina will look to hold their spot at the top of the table and make it 5 wins in 5 rounds as they face 2020 semi-finalist and WPL contender Kanwal.
Umina will want to keep their 100% record active with another win over tough opposition. The E-Gals boast the best attack in the competition scoring the highest number of goals after 4 rounds with 24 goals. Umina faced Kanwal only once last year but came out victorious in a 3-1 win over the Bulls. Umina currently sit on top of the WPL table with a better goal difference over last year’s League Champions Gosford and will look to remain on top with another dominant performance this weekend,
Kanwal, who finished 3rd in last year WPL season are currently with 2 wins and 2 losses from their opening 4 games. Every time Kanwal have won this year, they have kept a clean sheet but on the other hand, every game they have lost they have not managed to score. Kanwal are also yet to win 2 games in a row so a big thing for this Bulls side this year will be consistency.
Terrigal v Kariong
An impressive start to the year for Terrigal sees them sit by themselves on 9 points while their round 5 opponents Kariong are still in search of their first points of the season.
Terrigal will look to make it 3 wins in a row as they welcome a struggling Kariong side to Duffy’s Oval. Terrigal have kept 3 clean sheets from 4 games and have the 2nd best defence in the WPL, having only conceded 2 goals that came in the same game via Gosford, a true testament to how good Terrigal’s defence truly is. Terrigal will be hoping for another 3 points this weekend as they look to keep pressure on Umina and Gosford who sit above them.
Unfortunately for Kariong, injuries have played a big part in their slow start to the season having many key players out each week. Kariong was disappointed with their loss last weekend as they felt they could have obtained points from their fixture against Wyong. Nevertheless, Kariong will be out to make a statement this weekend against an in-form Terrigal side as they look to kick start their season with a win over the O’lasses away from home.
Written by Adam Blunden.