NPL Match Preview: Western United vs Melbourne Victory

Western United Academy

Western United’s Academy sides will take on Melbourne Victory in a pair of mini-Melbourne Derbies in Round 7 of the NPL 3 season.

Match Details

Western United vs Melbourne Victory

Sunday, 1 May

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

City Vista Recreation Reserve, Caroline Springs

Broadcast: The match will be broadcast live on NPL.tv

Last time out

It was a successful, high-scoring and dramatic trip to Doveton SC for Western United last weekend as both sides picked up maximum points in their fixtures.

The Under 21’s were in total control in a 4-2 win before the Senior’s made a remarkable second-half comeback, scoring three goals in the final 20 minutes to score a thrilling 4-3 victory.

Jake Najdovski continued his stunning early-season form with another goal and a second injury-time winner of the season after he struck late to claim victory over Melbourne City in Round 3.

Greg Siamoa is also in a rich vein of goalscoring form for the Under 21’s as he added a third goal of the season for a side that has poured in 24 goals in just six games.

Both sides are in the mix at the top of their respective divisions, with the Senior’s level on points with Melbourne City in first place and the Under 21’s sitting equal second, with just three points separating them from Victory at the top.

Last season’s meetings

Western United and Melbourne Victory faced each other twice in last year’s shortened NPL 3 season, with both matches in the senior competition ending in 2-2 draws.

The first of which saw Victory net an 88th minute equaliser to deny United the three points, while Adisu Bayew scored in the second meeting.

United’s Under 21’s lost both matches against Victory in 2021, also suffering a late goal to deny the side a point in a 3-2 defeat before the second meeting ended 3-1 in Victory’s favour.

The Opponent

As expected, Melbourne Victory have been strong in both NPL 3 competitions and will provide Western United with as tough a test as anyone this year.

The senior side has lost only once this season – in Round 2 against Melbourne City – and played out a 0-0 draw against Preston Lions last time out.

Victory are currently fourth on the table with 11 points, but the Under 21’s have so far been dominating the competition.

Victory are perfect through the opening six rounds with 25 goals scored and just five conceded in the reserve competition, already opening up a three-point buffer on United and Melbourne City.

Please note: Due to an FV Interim Suspension Order, Melbourne Victory fans will not be permitted to attend this match. There will be security and police presence at the venue and your bags may be requested for checks at the gate upon entering.

Calder United looks to bounce back against Bayside United

After tasting its first defeat of the NPLW season last week, Calder United will look to bounce back against Bayside United away from home on Saturday.

Mark Torcaso’s side is five points behind Bulleen Lions at the top of the table but will fancy its chances to defeat a Bayside team that is currently winless through the opening four rounds.

The Under 19’s have made a more impressive start and are just two points off the pace at the summit of the league and will look to inch further away from Bayside who are sitting in fourth.

Both matches will take place at Kingston Heath Soccer Complex on Saturday April 30, with the Under 19’s kicking off at 1:30pm AEST before the Senior’s take to the pitch at 3:30pm AEST.