NPL Match Preview: Eastern Lions vs Western United

Western United Academy

Western United will kick off the second half of the NPL 2 Victoria season, taking on Eastern Lions away from home.

The Junior Academy teams will each head to Casey Fields to take on Melbourne City in a big test, while Calder United will meet FC Bulleen Lions.

Match Details

NPL 2 Victoria Round 14

Eastern Lions vs Western United

Sunday, 21 May

Kick-off: 12:30pm AEST (Under 21’s), 3:00pm AEST (Under 23’s)

Gardiners Creek Reserve, Burwood

Last time out

Western United’s Under 23’s got back to winning ways last week, overcoming FC Bulleen Lions 3-1 in a fiery contest at City Vista.

Jake Najdovski and Luke Vickery scored first-half goals as United came from behind before Oliver Lavale wrapped up the result in the final 10 minutes.

That win brought Diogo Ferreira’s side back level on points at the top of the table and arrested a two-game losing skid.

It was a tougher evening for the Under 21’s, though, who couldn’t avoid a first defeat of the 2023 season as they went down 2-1 against Bulleen.

Alex Hird had put United in front but Bulleen fought back with two goals either side of half-time giving them the lead.

United couldn’t find an equaliser, ultimately slipping to second on the table with a two-point deficit to Melbourne City.

The Opponent

Eastern Lions have found a brilliant run of form to shoot right up to the top of the table at the midway point of the campaign.

Having lost four of the first seven matches – including a 1-0 loss to United on the opening weekend –Eastern have gone on to win five of the following six to sit on 24 points, level at the top with Western United and Preston Lions.

The main reason behind Eastern’s upturn in fortunes has been their improved defensive record with just four goals conceded in that six-game stretch compared to 19 goals against through the opening seven fixtures.

Carter Ramsay is one of a number of players on seven goals at the top of the golden boot standings, another of which is United’s own Max Bisetto.

Eastern’s Under 21’s have struggled throughout the season and are rooted to the bottom of the table, with five points and just one win in 13 matches.

Western United Junior Academy teams face tough Melbourne City test

It will be another A-Leagues derby for Western United’s Junior Academy teams this weekend with all four sides taking on Melbourne City.

City have made a strong start in each age group, with all teams sitting second on the table after three matches except for the Under 15’s.

The Under 18’s match will be a top of the table clash as United looks to defend its first-place status, while United’s Under 15’s will hope to stay ahead of City with a win.

Western United Junior Academy Match Details

JBNPL 1 Round 4

Melbourne City vs Western United

Sunday, 21 May

Kick-off: 9:00am (Under 14’s), 10:30am (Under 15’s), 12:00pm (Under 16’s), 1:45pm (Under 18’s)

Casey Fields, Cranbourne

Calder United to lock horns with FC Bulleen Lions

After taking on one competitive rival last week in South Melbourne, Calder United will face another with an away trip to FC Bulleen Lions this weekend.

Calder and Bulleen have had a number of incredible battles down the years, with a fair share of them coming within the last 12 months.

Calder defeated Bulleen in the NIKE F.C. Cup semi-final and the NPLW Grand Final last season and also won a heart-stopping FV Women’s Community Shield at the beginning of the 2023 campaign.

Both teams have had slow starts to the season by their standards, sitting outside the top four and looking to play catch-up on the sides at the top.

Calder’s Under 19’s will be eager to bounce back after two straight defeats and will hope to capitalise on Bulleen’s run of three losses in the last four matches.

Match Details

NPLW Victoria Round 10

FC Bulleen Lions vs Calder United

Saturday 20 May

Kick-off: 2:00pm, Saturday (Under 19’s), 4:00pm (Senior’s)

David Barro Stadium, Bulleen

Broadcast: The Senior’s match will be streamed live and free on NPL.tv

Calder United Juniors off to Southern United

Calder United’s three junior teams will head on the road this weekend, taking on Southern United in Round 13 of their respective seasons.

A tough weekend last time out against Football Victoria’s NTC squads will be pushed to the side as all three Calder teams seek maximum points.

Calder United Junior’s Match Details

Saturday, 20 May

Southern United vs Calder United

Kick-off times: 12:30pm (Under 13’s and Under 15’s), 2:00pm (Under 17’s)

Selandra Recreation Reserve, Clyde North