Western United will look to make it three wins from three games in the Liberty A-League Women with an away trip to face Adelaide United on Sunday.
Liberty A-League Women Round 3
Adelaide United vs Western United
Sunday, 4 December
Kick-off: 4:00pm AEDT (3:30pm local time)
FFSA State Centre, Adelaide
Broadcast: The match will be broadcast live and free on 10Play, and on Paramount+
There is one change to Mark Torcaso’s extended squad from last week, with Kahli Johnson dropping out with a minor knock to her knee.
The young attacker is replaced in the 18-player list by Aimee Medwin, who is named in the provisional squad for the first time after joining the Club just last week.
Western United squad: 1. Alyssa DALL’OSTE (gk), 2. Stacey PAPADOPOULOS, 4. Jaclyn SAWICKI (c), 5. Aimee MEDWIN, 6. Chloe LOGARZO, 7. Francesca IERMANO, 8. Jessica McDONALD, 9. Hannah KEANE, 11. Emma ROBERS, 14. Natasha DAKIC, 15. Adriana TARANTO, 16. Melissa TARANTO, 18. Aleksandra SINCLAIR, 19. Tyla Jay VLAJNIC, 20. Sydney CUMMINGS, 21. Hillary BEALL (gk), 22. Alana CERNE, 24. Julia SARDO
Last time out
United picked up its second straight win last weekend, proving too strong for Wellington Phoenix in a 4-1 win at Sky Stadium.
Keane was the star in the Green and Black’s first away trip in the competition with an assist to go along with two goals, which both came in an 11-minute flurry towards the end of the match.
As the only other team that has won two games in the Liberty A-League so far, Adelaide will provide a stern test for Western United in an early top of the table clash.
The Reds finished in third place last season, with head coach Adrian Stenta winning the Coach of the Year award and star striker Fiona Worts picking up the Golden Boot and the Julie Dolan Medal as the competition’s best player, though she will miss this weekend’s clash.
Adelaide will have no shortage of attacking talent available, though, with Chelsea Dawber coming off a 10-goal season in 2021/22, while Matilda Jenna McCormick has returned in defence for her third stint at the club.
Key Matchup: Hannah Keane vs Jenna McCormick
Keane’s first two goals for Western United last week were just reward for a dominant performance, and the No.9 will need to be in similar form to help her side secure victory this week.
Adelaide have kept two clean sheets in their opening two matches and could welcome McCormick into the starting line-up after she made her return via the bench last week.
With the form in which she has started this season, Keane will hope to get on top of McCormick and the Adelaide defence and find the net again in what could be a key battle in deciding the outcome of the match.
Player to Watch: Tyla Jay Vlajnic
Making her debut for Western United last week, Tyla Jay Vlajnic immediately made an impression in her new colours and will hope to do so again.
Vlajnic’s set piece delivery was deadly with a number of early corners nearly creating goals before she teed up Sydney Cummings in the second half and helped to create Keane’s first of the day.
Her impact on both sides of the ball at left-back will once again be vital in the game as United seeks to go toe to toe with one of the strongest teams in the competition.
Words from Mark Torcaso
On the form and impact of Hannah Keane
“Hannah’s been electric. She’s been on fire, she was amazing in pre-season. Our bit of research on her – it’s showing now, what we thought would happen.
“She’s going to be exciting for our league, but more importantly she’s just enjoying it, I know she’s having a great time and I think she’s going to get better and better every week.”
On the facing a strong side in Adelaide United
“Two games and they haven’t conceded, so they’re obviously going to be a very good defensive side. The coach has been really good, he’s worked with them for the last couple of good seasons so that’s going to be something that’s going to hold them in good stead.”
Words from the playing squad – Alana Cerne
On relishing opportunities to play early on in the season
“For me to develop as a centre-back, I need to play games. I’ll do what I can to get myself on the team sheet each week. Playing alongside Sydney (Cummings) and the rest of the back four, I’m definitely learning a lot.”
On the feeling within the group after two straight wins
“Two games in, we’re in a really good head space. We’re all getting along, gelling really well, we’re enjoying our time together and training every day feels good.”