Western United quartet earn Player of the Month nominations

Hillary Beall Daniel Penha Western United

Western United stars Hannah Keane, Hillary Beall, Daniel Penha and Ben Garuccio have each been nominated for January Player of the Month awards.

American duo Keane and Beall headline the Liberty A-League Women nominations with Kat Smith’s side going from strength to strength since the turn of the year.

John Aloisi’s Isuzu UTE A-League Men outfit has been boosted by standout performances from Penha and Garuccio, bring them alongside some of the best players in the competition in January.

Head to the A-Leagues social media accounts to vote for Hannah, Hillary, Daniel and Ben

Hannah Keane

Western United enjoyed an outstanding month in January in the Liberty A-League, winning three out of four matches and shooting up to second on the table.

Keane was an integral part of that run despite missing out on United’s first game of the month – a stunning 4-1 win over Melbourne Victory – due to injury.

United’s No.9 returned the following week in a defeat to Sydney FC but went on to have a significant impact on the following two wins.

Coming on at half-time against Adelaide United as part of a triple change, Keane helped change the game as Western United ended up winning 1-0, but it was the American’s impact in the final game of the month that stole the show.

On a mini run of five games without a goal, Keane came to life in an important fixture against Melbourne City, scoring twice and assisting the other as the Green and Black scored a priceless 3-1 victory.

Hillary Beall

Beall found equally impressive form in the first month of 2024 with her performances and continuity in goal coinciding with United’s recent run of results.

No.21 made a big save in the opening minutes against Victory to deny Paige Zois, and was on hand for two more big stops later on to ensure United remained in control all the way until the final whistle in that clash.

Following that unfortunate defeat to Sydney, Beall kept her third clean sheet of the season against Adelaide and contributed to it with a remarkable save to deny Isobel Hodgson on the stroke of half-time.

WATCH: Beall keeps a clean sheet against Adelaide thanks to heroic one-on-one save

As she often does in the big games, Beall then stood up again the following week against Melbourne City with arguably her best performance of the season.

Taking her overall save tally for the month to 16 in this match, Beall had to come up with her very best to deny Hannah Wilkinson at a crucial time in the match, with the scores level at 1-1 just before half-time.

Vote for Hillary and Hannah via the A-Leagues Instagram and Twitter

Daniel Penha

Penha is continuing to come into his own in a Western United shirt and offered yet more proof to the competition of the quality that oozes from his boots.

Behind everything that was positive for United in a narrow loss to Melbourne City, Penha stood up with an incredible display against Macarthur FC the following week.

After United had relinquished a 1-0 lead to fall behind 2-1, Penha stood up with the equaliser and then the go-ahead goal – the latter a thunderbolt from range, smashing into the post before going into the net after a brilliant piece of skill in the build-up.

WATCH: The highlights from the Penha show in 3-3 thriller against Macarthur

Penha was again influential against Western Sydney Wanderers in United’s final game of the month, though the Green and Black ultimately fell to an unfortunate defeat.

Ben Garuccio

Western United’s Player of the Season in the 2021/22 campaign, Garuccio demonstrated his very best form across the month of January.

The left-back was perfectly placed in the box to score United’s opener against Macarthur inside the opening two minutes, an indication of the attacking threat that he has been bringing for the Green and Black of late.

Despite the defeat to the Wanderers the following week, Garuccio was one of the best players on the pitch in the first of United’s two games in Hobart.

Constantly getting forward down the left flank, Garuccio came as close as any United player to finding an equaliser late on and caused Western Sydney problems the entire afternoon.

The No.17 has continued his form into February, scoring in last week’s thrilling 2-2 draw with Sydney FC.  

Vote for Daniel and Ben via the A-Leagues Instagram and Twitter