Cockburn City's Cherno Bah and Bayswater City's Jordan Abrahams in action

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The 2023 NPLWA Women’s season started with a bang, and in our ‘Match of the Round’ Murdoch University Melville secured a 2-1 win against Fremantle City at Hilton Reserve. It was a perfect start for new coach David Biancuzzo, and he was pleased with his side. “Obviously happy to get the win and the three points first up,” he said. “Very proud of the team performance against a good Fremantle team, but we now start again and look forward to the game against Redstar on Friday night.” The visitors got off to the perfect start, Sophie Meaden, chipping delightfully over Fremantle Dayle Schroeder. They added a second on the hour mark, Meaden burst clear of a static Fremantle, before finished well. It looked game over, but Fremantle found a lifeline, with Mikayla Lyons scoring, which set up a nervy finish, but MUMFC held firm to take the points.

In the shock of the round, Perth RedStar’s unbeaten league run in the competition has come to an end, after the Hyundai NTC secured a 2-0 win at the RedStar Arena. “First and foremost we’re really happy with the win and to finally beat RedStar, and they’re a top team regardless of players they’ve lost,” NTC assistant coach Fernando Barreiro said. “I thought it was a real gutsy performance from our team, Ben and I happy to see that what we’re doing on the training ground the girls are able to implement on game day. Was it our best performance, no not by a long shot but we’ll take the win and confidence from it and try and build on that moving forward. The team will enjoy the moment but come Tuesday we’ll be focused for the task at hand and another really tough opponent in Balcatta.”

The hosts went close early Jayna Ridley’s header from close-range sailing over, before Renee Leota volley wide after good work from Chiori Ikeda. But it NTC who opened the scoring, last season’s top scorer Tanika Lala won possession in the middle of the park and raced in on goal and finished clinically past Maya Diederichesen. The striker was in again after the break, but Diederichesen stood tall to deny her. Sarah Carroll went close to levelling for the hosts, when she raced one-on-one with NTC keeper Lilly Bailey, who saved well. But the NTC sealed the win eight minutes from time, Lala was brought down by Diederichesen, and Cassidy converted the resulting penalty.

Perth SC continued their Night Series form, after a 4-0 win against Subiaco at Dorrien Gardens. “It was a comfortable win in the end, as much as anything ever is in football. But I thought we controlled the game throughout the 90 minutes and dictated the tempo very well,” Perth coach Peter Rakic said. “It was good to see Ellie (La Monte) and Gemma (Craine) on the score sheet with both players making a big impact when going forward. A clean sheet up the other end is also equally important for us and this will give the team a good bump in confidence knowing that we finished the job on all accounts.” The Azzurri opened the scoring with La Monte scoring, and they doubled their advantage just before half time, Rebecca Bennett finding Craine, who raced in on goal and scored clinically. Jaime Duncanson added a third, volleying home La Monte’s, before Abbey Meakins scored the fourth to seal a comprehensive win.

Balcatta Etna were the big winners on the day, thrashing Curtin University 9-0 at Grindleford Reserve. Tia Stonehill curled home on 14 minutes, before Lauren Continibali’s long-range strike doubled the lead minutes later. An own goal from Ferne Carter made it 3-0, before Monique Prinsloo side-footed home from close range. Kimberly McCartney made it five with a header from Continibali’s set-piece, then Prinsloo finished Stonehill’s cross to make it six before the interval. Two further goals after the break from Prinsloo, to make it four for the striker, before Stonehill got in on the act late added the ninth.



The 2023 Amateur Night Series semi-finalists have been decided after the final group games over the weekend. In Group A, North Perth United topped the table, after beating Jaguar 3-1 at Ellenbrook Sports Hub on Sunday evening, goals from Darby Gafney and Brett Cutting helping them into the knockout stage . “Real good win against a team that lead the league for most of last year,” Kelechi Osunwa said. “Once again, we went behind early so that's something we need to work on but the character we showed to get back into the game and the way the boys are gelling and working hard for each other is pleasing to see. Of course, it's still pre-season so we are still trying to get minutes to players and working on shape and structure but to be doing that and to have a chance at silverware can only be a good thing. Looking forward to the semi-final, but know that the remaining teams are strong so we will have to be at our best to make it to the final.” In the other game in the group, Wembley Downs beat Maccabi 4-2.

In Group B Division One side Port Kennedy moved into the semi-final after a 1-1 draw against Peel United at Kelly Park, while in the other game in the group Kwinana United beat South West Phoenix 6-1. In Group C North Beach topped the table after a 5-2 win against Quinns at Forrest Park. Quinns raced to a two-goal lead, but James Ashford pulled one back just before half time. Benny Reynolds erased the deficit almost immediately after the break with an great finish, and further goals from Luke Jones, Michael Polglaze and another from Ashford sealed the win. “Sunday's outcome was unreal and a result of the lads not dropping their heads and getting on with the plan we set out with before kick-off,” North Beach coach Nick di Carlo said. “We are thrilled to get into the semi-final stage on our first attempt as a club and look forward to the challenge Port Kennedy will bring next Sunday evening.” In the other game on the night Joondalup United beat East Perth 4-3.

Finally in Group D, Kelmscott Roos topped the ladder after a 1-1 draw against Emerald at Beale Park. Kelmscott were ahead after the break, Ishmael Greywood raced down the right, before cutting inside and slipping an inch perfect pass through to Lemeo Wordu who took a great first touch and finished well. Emerald were reduced to ten men, but they rallied and pulled one back, but Kelmscott held firm to seal their place in the knockout stage. “The game was played in great spirit and our boys played really well in hot conditions. Emerald are a tough side to break down and their keeper made some great saves,” Kelmscott Taylor Warwick said. “A draw was probably the best result in the end and due to yellow and red cards it means that we go through to the semi-final for the second year in a row.” In the other game from the group, South Perth United beat Southern Spirit 4-2. The semi-finals will be played at the Ellenbrook Sports Hub on Sunday, in the first game North Perth United take on Kelmscott Roos (4.00pm), while in the late game Port Kennedy meet North Beach (6.15pm)



Perth Glory have staged a remarkable second-half comeback to secure a thrilling 4-3 victory over Melbourne City at Macedonia Park and keep their Liberty A-League Finals hopes alive. It was an emotional day for long-serving defender Kim Carroll, who farewelled the Glory supporters on a winning note. The visitors led at the break with Rhianna Pollicina scoring. But Sadie Lawrence levelled with 20 minutes remaining, and Hannah Blake added a second. Hannah Wilkinson levelled for the visitors, but Hana Lowry and Cyera Hintzen put Alex Epakis’ side in control, and although Julia Grosso added a third for City late, Glory runout winners.

The result leaves Glory three points behind fourth-placed Melbourne Victory, with a game in hand, setting up a dramatic final week of the season in which Glory face away clashes with Sydney FC on Wednesday and Brisbane Roar on Saturday. “My heart rate is just starting to calm down now, wow, just wow, what a match,” a delighted Epakis said post-match. “That performance was a microcosm of how the whole season has gone. We started slowly, we looked a bit down and out and then we found a way to overcome what we needed to in order to get the result, I think that’s the identity of this team. We know what we are and what we’re capable of, and we’re a fighting team, we’re a squad and everyone contributes to the performance. We’re a team of workers, we work hard for everything that we get and I think that’s why I’m really happy.”

There was a big crowd on hand for the final home game of the season, but it was the visitors who were dictating terms, and Leticia McKenna had gone close against her former club, before Pollicina pounced on a fumble from Glory custodian Sarah Langman to give City a deserved lead. Daniela Galic then went close to doubling their lead, when her shot crashed off the woodwork, as she thumped a shot against the junction of bar and post and at that stage, City looking comfortable at the break.

Glory was defending deep, with Carroll working overtime in her final appearance in front of the Glory faithful, but they found an equaliser on 70 minutes, Lowry corner was flicked on at the near post by substitute Hintzen, and Lawrence popped up to head past Melissa Barbieri. The Glory faithful were on their feet again sixty seconds later, Barbieri’s poor clearance was seized upon by Blake who sent an inch-perfect chip back over the keepers’ head and into the net.

The goals continued to flow as Wilkinson picked out the top corner at the other end to make it 2-2, but seven minutes later, Tash Rigby showed incredible tenacity to win the ball before finding Hintzen and her square ball was delicately curled in by Lowry to regain the lead, and it was a great finale for the supporters. The lively Hintzen then got on the scoresheet, clipping home her side’s fourth having been teed up by fellow-US-import Gabriella Coleman and although Grosso’s close-range response caused some anxious moments right at the death, but Glory wasn’t to be denied. An unforgettable afternoon continued after the final whistle as Carroll received the plaudits her remarkable service to the club and Australian football deserved and given the tenacity Glory showed here, the 35-year-old’s final season in purple may yet extend beyond next weekend.

Perth Glory: GK Sarah LANGMAN, 3 Kim CARROLL, 4 Natasha RIGBY, 7 Liz ANTON, 8 Hana LOWRY, 12 Sofia SAKALIS (42 Gabriella COLEMAN 74'), 14 Hannah BLAKE, 18 Sadie LAWRENCE (6 Tijan MCKENNA 82'), 19 Izzy FOLETTA, 21 Ella MASTRANTONIO (13 Sarah CAIN 74'), 23 Alana JANCEVSKI (15 Cyera HINTZEN 59') - Sub not used: RGK Morgan AQUINO

Melbourne City: GK Melissa BARBIERI, 3 Naomi CHINNAMA, 6 Leticia MCKENNA (25 Darcey MALONE 69'), 7 Julia GROSSO, 8 Kaitlyn TORPEY, 9 Holly McNAMARA (21 Isabella ACCARDO 89'), 10 Rhianna POLLICINA, 14 Katie BOWEN, 15 Emma CHECKER, 19 Maria ROJAS (17 Hannah WILKINSON 69'), 24 Daniela GALIC (22 Bryleeh HENRY 80' - Subs not used: RGK Sally JAMES – Attendance: 910 - Referee: Kelly Jones



Perth SC have won for the first time this season after a hard fought 1-0 win against Sorrento in our ‘Match of the Round’ at Dorrien Gardens. The Gulls went into this one after a big win at Bayswater, but it was Perth, who drew their opener against the RedStar, who won this one with defender Julian Teles scoring the only goal. “It was a tough game in warm conditions, and we played well in patches,” Teles said. “However, we showed great determination to keep a clean sheet and see out the win, so it was a great performance to build on.”

It was a tight opening with clear cut chances few and far between, but it was the hosts who created the first real opportunity on 23 minutes, Abdul Osman playing in Fanuel Dawitt, whose low shot was saved by Patrick Hughes. Sorrento were struggling in the final third, but the hosts went close again six minutes before the break, Dawitt was the provider this time, his cross from the right was headed wide by Sam Cook.

Perth found the opener just before the hour, Paul Zimarino’s free kick wasn’t dealt with by Sorrento, and Teles fired home the rebound from six meters. The goal brought Sorrento to life, and they went close to the equaliser five minutes later. Mark Withers’ corner was met by John Connolly at the near post, his header crashed off the post, and Connolly’s follow up shot was blocked.

The game opened up with chances now at both ends, first Mark Barnett shot was deflected wide for the Gulls, before Zayd Farah’s long-range shot flashed just wide of the far post at the other end. But it was Sorrento who were pressing late, and Connelly’s shot on the turn was saved low by Luke Radonich, then in stoppage time the Gulls had a number of chances to earn a point, the best came when Barnett headed wide, after Withers picked him out unmarked in the box.



Perth Glory made it back-to-back wins to start the season, after a thrilling 4-3 win against Armadale at Lark Hill on Saturday afternoon. It was the worst possible start for John O’Reilly’s side, with a brace from Corey Sutherland and another to Jamie Overy giving the Glory youngsters a three-goal lead, before Peter Jacobsz pulled one back just before the break. It looked all over early for the visitors in the second half when Royie Rahamim added a fourth for Glory, but Armadale hit back and Daniel Robinson reduced the margin just before the hour. Glory then had Overy sent off, and Armadale kept coming, with Jacobsz adding a third, but try as they might they couldn’t find the equaliser.

“We had to work hard to get the win, especially late when we were down to ten men, but to come out with a win is good,” Glory winger Daniel Bennie said post-match. “Their goal late in the first half gave them confidence, but we came out really strong after the break and secured a fourth, but then battled to secure the points, which we are really happy with.”

It was the hosts who started the brighter and found the opener on nine minutes, Sutherland picked the ball up on the left of the penalty area, drifted inside his marker, raced into the box and finished clinically past Yousri Gharsallah, for a great individual goal. It was 2-0 on 25 minutes, the lively Bennie raced clear down the right, and his low cross was turned home at the back post by Overy, before Sutherland sent Yousri Gharsallah the wrong way from the spot to make it 3-0 seven minutes from the break. But Armadale found a lifeline just before half time, Ethan Levitt’s free kick was headed back across goal by Chris Jackson and Jacobsz swept the ball home from close-range.

The hosts started the second half well, and Gharsallah saved well to deny Bennie in the first minute, and then produced a stunning save to thwart the same player moments later. But on 52 minutes their good start was rewarded with a fourth, Bennie pulled the ball back from the bye-line for Rahamim, his first shot was saved low by the Armadale custodian, but the Glory striker fired home the rebound. It looked all over, but Armadale had other ideas and they reduced the margin again six minutes later.

Neat build up play ended with Robinson, who scored from close-range. The game took another twist on 62 minutes when Glory was making a substitution, and Overy was told to leave the far side of the pitch by the referee, but the player ignored him and walked toward the dugout, he was showed a yellow card, and with it being his second, he was sent off. Roared on by the travelling supporters, Robinson’s curling effort crashed off the woodwork, but on 68 minutes they found a third. Amir Ajan found space down the right, his cross was headed back by Jackson to Berger, his shot was well saved by Cook, but Jacobsz fired home the rebound.

Armadale were pressing for the equaliser, Lachlan Collins’ shot flashed just wide, before Robinson was denied by Cook. The Glory keeper was beaten on 83 minutes, but Collins’ effort was cleared off the line by Danny Douglas. Then in the second minute of stoppage time Armadale thought they had found the equaliser, Jackson playing in substitute Angel Andres Jnr, who slid the ball home, but their celebrations were cut short with the flag was up for offside. “I thought we played really well in the first half, dominated possession and get back behind them loads of times, and we were worthy of the three-goal lead,” Glory coach John Walmsley said post-match. “I thought the second half was going well, until the sending off, and it changed the match, but the lads fought the game out and we hung on and got the three points, which will be massive for their confidence going forward.”



Balcatta Etna have scored late to beat Inglewood United 2-1 at Inglewood Stadium. Shubham Mokala gave the hosts the lead early, but an own goal from Chris Tilson levelled things up just after the hour, before a goal two minutes from time from new import Kataro Yamamato secured the win for Glenn Grostate’s side.

“Fantastic to get our first win after coming up short against Perth Glory last week,” Balcatta’s Jonathan Corness said. “The whole squad put in a great shift against Inglewood, and we've set a good standard for ourselves the past two weeks and we'll be aiming to carry that on, so we'll be more than happy to "surprise" a few more teams this year.”

United were on the front foot early and Balcatta keeper Dominic Savoldelli got down well to push Mokala’s long-range shot after eight minutes, but the visitors responded, Yamamato’s volley was well saved by Alex Dunn. It was end-to-end with chances at both ends, Yamamato firing just wide on 33 minutes, but three minutes later it was the hosts who found the opener. Mokala raced at the Balcatta defence and wasn’t closed down, so he went for goal, firing past Savoldelli from 20-meters.

Balcatta started the second half well, and they were rewarded with the equaliser on 67 minutes. Jack Leech’s ball into the penalty area was helped past Dunn by the unfortunate Tilson. Both sides pressed for the winner, but it was Balcatta who found it. A quickly taken free kick from leech sent Yamamato down the left, he held off marker, before racing into the box and finishing low past Dunn to win it, and was swamped by his teammate.

“Absolutely delighted for the squad to get the 3 points against a good Inglewood side, and I thought it was fully deserved with the chances we had it could and should have been more, but with a great keeper like Alex Dunn who kept them in it until last minutes,” Balcatta defender Adam Tong said.

“Losing our striker five minutes before kick-off and our right back we had to change a few players and they came in and they did amazing, which just shows what squad depth we have now. Overall good performance and always things to work on and to look at and we now move on to next week’s game. So pleased for our import Kattaro, to score his second of the season and to be honest he could have had a hat trick.”



Cockburn City have bounced back from last week’s big loss at Armadale, to fight back and beat Bayswater City 2-1 at Dalmatinac Park. The visitors found the opener early though Jon Stynes, but substitute Friday Zico levelled for Steve McDonald’s side with a superb long-range effort, then two minutes from time they won it, with Ivan Skorich securing the three points.

“Great performance and bounce back after the game last weekend, we came in Tuesday and Thursday and worked on what let us down and how we could exploit Bayswater and I think we executed the game plan perfectly,” Cockburn skipper Jesse Lazzaro explained. “We had our fair share of opportunities in the first half and we’re unable to capitalise and Bayswater took advantage and scored a well worked goal.

“But we never stopped and kept working and a great finish from Friday bought us level and a great ball from Cherno to Ivan Skorich and a great finish. We managed to get a few boys back in the team from injury and it really showed when we made subs everyone impacted the game positively but now, we just have to keep working hard and focus on our next match against Perth.”

Cockburn should have scored early, Raphael Gomba blazing over top after being found unmarked in the box by Anthony Skorich, before Gordon Smith was denied by Michael Craggs at full stretch. But on 21 minutes it was Bayswater who hit the front, Thomas Southgate’s cross found Stynes, who lost is marker and headed home. The hosts had the ball in the net on the half hour, but the flag was up for offside.

Gomba’s snap shot then flashed inches wide, as Cockburn pressed for the equaliser, but Ndumba Makeche went close at the other end, his low shot saved by Craggs. But at the break it was the visitors with the narrow lead. But Cockburn weren’t to be denied and levelled 20 minutes from time, substitute Zico was found on the right, and he cut inside his marker and unleashed a stunning long-range shot that gave Nic Speca no chance.

Then two minutes from time the Cockerels won it. A poor clearance out of defence was pounced upon by the hosts and Cherno Bah dinked the ball over the top to Skorich, as the Bayswater defence looked for the offside flag, that never came, and he finished low past Speca to seal the three points.

“We spoke all week at how disappointed we were at conceding silly goals, and how easily we exposed ourselves as a unit in the Armadale game, and if we wanted to compete against a team like Bayswater that’s the one area we had to rectify and get better at, being able to defend against their transition from defence to attack, especially with the attacking options that Bayswater possesses,” Cockburn coach Steven McDonald said. “It was an absolute credit to every one of the players, they really took onboard what we worked on, and applied it on the day, every single one of them were outstanding, even after we conceded, we still stuck to what we knew would win the game, and kept believing.”



Stirling Macedonia have made it back-to-back wins, after a come from behind 2-1 win against Perth RedStar at the RedStar Arena. Daryl Nicol gave the hosts the lead, but Calvin Whitney levelled shortly after. But it was English import Kingsley Eshun who won it for the visitors scoring just after the half hour.

“Very competitive game with both ball possession teams, and the first half was very even, but second half we look to have control over the game,” Stirling skipper Calvin Whitney explained. “Very happy to have two wins on the bounce, against what I think are team to be in contention for the top four. Next week we try to emulate the same against Floreat Athena.”

All the goals were scored during a hectic first half in Joondalup, and it was last season’s top scorer Daryl Nicol who gave the hosts the lead on nine minutes. Chok Dor raced down the left, his cross wasn’t dealt with and Nicol pounced to fire home. But Ian Ferguson’s side levelled seven minutes later, Sam Wynne made space down the right, before crossing to Whitney, who made no mistake from the edge of the box.

The visitors sealed the win on 32 minutes, with a stunner from English import Eshun. The striker, who won last week’s Football West goal of the round, received the ball on the edge of the box, and turned his marker before drilling the ball into the net via the post.

“It was an all-round good game from us, dealing with the heat very well, but we staying focused and strong under the fatigue,” Stirling defender Hristijan Jankuloski explained. “Nicol capitalised on one of our own mistakes and they took the lead, but we did amazing to get back into the game and take the lead with Kingsley’s stunning goal. It’s a great confidence booster going into next week’s biggest rivalry game against Floreat.”



Floreat Athena have bounced back from defeat in the opening round, after spoiling the home coming party of newly promoted Olympic Kingsway at Kingsway Reserve, running out 2-0 on Saturday evening. It was the first home game in the NPL for Olympic, and the club also unveiled their new floodlights, but first half goal from Jesse Fuller and Noah Shamaki secured the win, and got their title defence back on track.

“It was a solid win, and back to the old ways, being hard to beat and working hard for each other, when we do that not a lot of teams can get through then we have good attacking options on the counter attack,” Floreat winger Sean McManus explained. “Yesterday has definitely kickstarted the season off for us after a disappointing start last week on the road to defending our 22 League winning season, hoping to go back-to-back.”

The hosts opened brightly and Sasa Njegic snap shot was saved low by Jason Saldaris, before Njegic shot from the edge of the box flew high. But on eight minutes it was the visitors who found the opening goal, skipper Nick Ambrogio’s corner found the unmarked Jess Fuller, whose stooping header beat Malek Kuc. They went close again six minutes later, Bayley Brown-Montgomery’s free kick was saved at the second attempt by Kuc.

The keeper injured his shoulder in the incident and was relaced by David Keenan seven minutes from half time, before Sean McManus curling shot flashed wide. Then in the shadows of half time Floreat doubled their advantage, Bayley-Montgomery burst down the left, before crossing from the bye-line, picking Shamaki at the back post, who made no mistake, to send Floreat into the break two goals to the good.

Olympic were on the front foot after the break and Ciaran Byrne stung the palms of Saldaris early, before the Floreat custodian pulled off a smart save to deny Liam Murray on the hour. Skipper Shane Cassidy then saw his header crash off the post, as Olympic looked to get back into the game. But Floreat were dangerous on the break, and McManus was sent clear fifteen minutes from time, but his lob over the on-coming Keenan drifted just wide.

Floreat were defending well as Olympic lifted the tempo and Daniel Walsh header at the back post failed to find the target, before Daniel Harrison’s shot was tipped around the post by the alert Saldaris, but it was Floreat leaving with the points. “Leading into the game, it had all the right ingredients with it being a big derby on Greece Independence Day and playing under their new lights,” Floreat defender Dennis Galan explained.

“Therefore, the boys were up for it and it was a very disciplined performance by the team. Kingsway kept the ball well however we made it difficult for them to break us down and worked very hard defensively. We know chances would come and thankfully we put them away when we did. Been a while seem the team have kept a clean sheet, so from a defender’s perspective couldn’t have been a better result, we now look forward to another big derby next week against Stirling.”



Western Knights have kicked off their State League Division One season with a 3-0 win against Croatian rivals Gwelup Croatia in our ‘Match of the Round’ at Nash Field on Saturday afternoon. “I thought we dominated the game from the start to the finish and should have been two or three up at half time if we had taken our chances,” Knights’ Paul Lloyd explained. “We are still a new team but the lads are gelling well, but It’s always good to start the season with a win, especially in a Derby. It was nice for me to get on the scoresheet too against my old manager Trim Morgan.”

All the goals came in the second half in this one, and it was former Armadale striker Albert Luwi scoring the first, with a low strike 10 minutes in. The tall striker added a second on 77 minutes, firing home at the near post. The points were wrapped up six minutes from time, with Lloyd finishing well to give the Knights a perfect start to 2023. “It was important that we started the season off well, and I thought we were the dominant side for the majority of the match with some really good passages of play and numerous chances created,” Knights coach Adam Kostrencic explained. “We were unfortunately unable to convert any of them in the first half but we stuck to our process and the goals came in the second half, so in the end it was a well-deserved win with all players contributing to the end result.”

The round started on Friday evening, and Mandurah City started the season with a bang, thrashing Gosnells City 8-0 at Securitas Protect Stadium. It was a disappointing start in the league for Gosnells, who were promoted from Division Two last season, while The Dolphins, who won the Night Series recently dominated from start to finish. “I think Friday night’s win was a statement from the team. The control and ruthlessness we showed was pleasing and to get a clean sheet again was a huge marker for us,” Mandurah’s Murray Mackintosh said post-match. “It was great to see Joe continue his goal scoring form and I thought our football was exciting and the intensity was spot on. I think our fans will be looking forward of what’s to come from this group of players.”

It only took five minutes from the hosts to hit the front, with Joe O’Brien firing home at the front post, and the striker doubled his and Mandurah’s lead three minutes later. Craig Barker was brought down on the edge of the box, but the alert O’Brien swept the ball past Jack Adams. It was 3-0 on 20 minutes, John Baird’s goalbound free kick hit Blake Adams, giving the keeper no chance. Then six minutes before the break Hamish van Dieken made it 4-0 from the penalty spot, despite Adams getting a hand to it. It was a tough debut for new Gosnells coach Ross Greer, but it got worse late, with O’Brien racing clear to complete his hat-trick on 78 minutes, and he added his fourth three minutes from time. Player coach John Baird added the seventh moments later before Mackintosh wrapped up the scoring in stoppage time with a stunner from long range.

Mandurah coach John Baird said it was a great start to the season and was full of praise for four goal hero O’Brien. “Difficult to finds the words on the performance, the team is just so fit and powerful, and we believe there is more to come from us, that’s the good thing,” Mandurah Coach John Baird said. “Joey’s goals and his performance does not surprise me or the coaching staff. He’s done this before and been doing it in training for months, the boy scores goals, but has so much more to his play also.”

Fremantle City also started the season with a big 4-0 win against UWA Nedlands at Hilton Park. “Overall, it was a very pleasing start to the season, scoring four goals and keeping a sheet is always satisfying,” Fremantle coach Matthew Sparrow said. “I thought we controlled the game for large periods and scored our goals at crucial times of the match. We knew we had to perform today and more importantly pick up our first three points of the season, which will give the boys confidence going into next week’s game against Subiaco.”

They opened the scoring on 16 minutes, when Ollie La Galia squared for Hamza Hina to finish. Theydoubled their lead 11 minute later, with La Galia finishing clinically. The visitors were reduced to ten men on the hour, with Adam Falcone shown a red card by the referee, and Fremantle took control. Riley Van Dieken finished La Galia’s pass to make it 3-0, before Pat Loughrey put the icing on the cake with a stunning strike 13 minutes from time.

Murdoch University Melville and Subiaco have shared the spoils after 2-2 draw at the Besteam Arena. “The first game is always a tricky encounter but the boys were absolutely up for it,” new Subiaco coach Michael Janssen said. “Taki’s team is always well drilled and structured with their middle three Melville shows top quality in our division. But we knew that we have the players and depth in our squad to match this. The boys played and fought for each other for 96 minutes as a team and this is what we have to deliver every game day to get results. I’m sure the people who watched the game left entertained from 96 minutes of State League Football.”

New Subiaco striker Gavin Knight opened his account for the season, with a lob from distance in the second minute, and Mark Bauersachs hit the post moments later. But the hosts hit back and former Gosnells striker Eddie Wynne-Willson levelled on 17 minutes from the spot, and three minutes later Feisal Zaw gave them the lead. But Subiaco restored parity before the break with Dominic Manno capitalizing on a poor clearance to score. Both sides found the woodwork after the break, and it looked like MUMFC would win it late when they were awarded a second penalty in the fifth minute of stoppage time, but Subiaco keeper Connor Hogan saved the resulting Wynne-Willson spot kick.

The points were also shared at Forrest Park, with Dianella White Eagles and Joondalup City drawing 1-1. “I thought we should have walked away from there with a win, but that’s what happens when you don’t take your chances,” Dianella coach Darran Quinncroft explained. “We conceded an easy goal as well from ball watching but overall, there was some positives and we will hit the training ground this week working on it.” It was a dream debut for Angel Andres, the former Armadale marksman firing home a free kick after only 11 minutes, but the hosts hit back with former Sorrento defender Shaun Kilkelly heading home. “A tight closely contested game where both teams enjoyed spells of dominance throughout the game, so a draw was probably a fair reflection of the game as both teams had their chances to win it,” Joondalup skipper Ben Johns explained. “Disappointed not to start the season with three points, but we’ll take the point and move onto next week.”

In the final game Forrestfield United have come from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Rockingham City at Crazy Domains Stadium, Hartfield Park. “I felt we were coasting at two nil and should really have put the game to bed but we switched off the last fifteen minutes and got punished for it,” Rockingham coach Kris Donnell said. “We will take the positives and move on to next week now.” The visitors were ahead just after the hour mark, with Ollie McGee’s diving header from Ryan Kennedy’s free- kick. They doubled their moments later, with former Perth Glory youth midfielder Jayden Leader’s low strike from just inside the penalty area, giving Nick Stone no chance. But the hosts found a life line on 78 minutes, Ali Nazary finishing across the Cyril Sharrock to halve the deficit, and the striker turned provider with seven minutes to play when his cross was headed in by Noah Appleby for a share of the points.



Swan United started the season with a 3-1 win against Joondalup City in our ‘Match of the Round’ at the Swan Italian Cub, Francis Street. “It was a really good way to start the season, and I thought we started quite brightly and created one or two half chances, then we were able to assert more pressure higher up the pitch and managed to get two goals from it,” Swan coach Niall Hughes explained. “From there I think we were quite comfortable, and if I’m being critical should have finished a few more of our chances in the second half. The last 15-20 minutes or so Joondalup put us under a lot of pressure and scored from a great strike. That was the only real negative from the game for us, as we had made a clean sheet a priority at half time.”

The black and whites were ahead on 11 minutes, Nick Burmej won the ball in midfield and found Cameron Anderson on the right, he picked out Rhys Loxley on the edge of the box, and the new signing finished clinically into the bottom corner. They doubled their lead on 25 minutes, after good pressure an under hit back pass was pounced on by Jake Fritchley, who beat the keeper to the ball, and rolled it home from a tight angle. They wrapped up the points seven minutes into the second half, Tommy Black won possession on the half way line, and Burmej then found Cameron Anderson on the edge of the box, who threaded the ball through for Loxley, who fired home his second. Joondalup pulled one back late with Jamie Stewart on target, but it was too little too late.

Curtin University were the big winners in the opening round, thrashing Quinns 8-1 at Edinburgh Oval. But they had to come from behind, with Tyler Holden giving Quinns the lead after only three minutes, but that was as good as it got for the visitors. A brace from Kiren Witt, and another to Jordan Valentini, the youngster racing down the left before cutting in and calmly finishing, gave them a 3-1 lead at the break. Nathan Smith then fired home a free kick on the hour to make it 4-1, before Witt completed his hattrick moments later. Ali Akbarzadeh and Simone Sichel added two more, before Witt rounded off the scoring with his fourth on the day. “Pleased with the response after going 1-0 down in the opening minutes, and it was a good team performance and were continuing to improve week after week,” Curtin coach Troy Reid explained. “But all in all, happy to open the season with three points and will be looking to build some momentum as we travel to fellow promotion contenders Balga this weekend.”

Carramar Shamrock Rovers have also started the season well, with a 3-0 against Canning City. “We have to be happy with a 3-0 win to start the season,” Rovers coach Gerry McEwan said. “Every team wants a positive start to their league campaign, so we knew Canning would provide a tough contest.” Rovers missed some great chances in the first half, and Nathan Diaz saw his header from a corner disallowed as the linesman flagged to say the cross had swung out the park. But two minutes into the second half Rovers opened the scoring, an in-swinging corner picked out Diaz, who headed home at the back post. The second goal arrived shortly after, good work from Dylan McCann set up Drew Johnston, his shot from the edge of the box was well saved, but Alan Reidy was on hand to score the rebound. They wrapped up the points one minute from time, Nick Timmings’ cross found Reidy to score his second.

Marc Anthony’s tenue at Morley-Windmills has started with a 4-2 win against Ashfield at Ashfield Reserve. “Really happy to start the season well, especially at a new club,” Anthony said. “It’s important to get off on a winning note so very pleased with the three points.” The hosts opened the scoring early with Jared Favel scoring on five minutes, but Morley were level 16 minutes later, Conor Kavanagh scoring from distance. Morley hit the front on 38 minutes, a cross from Steve Purton was finished clinically by Jordan Nikolajevic, and Christian Vest added a third just before the break, robbing the defender and finished low past the keeper. Purton added a fourth from the spot early in the second half, before Jake Melia added a second for the hosts.

Kingsley Westside travelled to Wanneroo Reserve and came home with the three points after a hard fought 2-1 win against Wanneroo City. “A very good gutsy win at Wanneroo, and a win that broke our hoodoo of never winning there,” Kingsley coach Steven Dimitrovich said. “We controlled the game for the whole first half and should’ve been more than 1-0 up, but second half Wanneroo turned it into a scrappy game just really pleased how we responded to them equalising and went on to win the game which I felt was well deserved by us.” The visitors made it 1-0 six minutes before half time, with new signing Hayden Lowe on target, but Dion Berman levelled on the hour for the hosts. But Nick Koefler won it for Kingsley 17 minutes from time, scoring a spectacular bicycle kick into the top corner. Wanneroo ended the with ten men with Juma Awaka sent off.

In the final game Balga proved to strong for newly-promoted Maddington-Kalamunda White City, running 2-0 winners at Princess Road Reserve. “Taking on the new team in the league is always a difficult game into the unknown, and Maddington are a very good team and our Balga Boys played tactically disciplined,” Balga coach Gerhard Janssen said. “The victory is a good start into the season and the team will work hard to follow up on it against Curtin next week.” Nathan Scully scored early for the hosts, and they wrapped it up nine minutes into the second half with Bleron Mamudi on target. The visitors ended the game with ten men after Jose Zuniga was sent off.



The Socceroos have made a winning return to the pitch after their heroics in Qatar in the World Cup, after goals from Jackson Irvine, Awer Mabil and a maiden international goal from Garang Kuol secured the 3-1 win against Ecuador at CommBank Stadium on Friday night. Irvine gave the hosts the lead, but Felix Torres headed the visitor’s level, but Mabil and Kuol, who become the fourth youngest goalscorer in Socceroos history, sealed the win.

“Beautiful moment to score a first goal. I think I almost missed it. Happy with the points, the boys fought hard and a win is all we wanted,” Kuol said post-match. “Straight away, the camaraderie, the brotherhood is back, especially after the World Cup. Feels like a second family. Very special place, being with the boys.”

Graham Arnold handed Aiden O'Neill his international debut with the 24-year-old becoming cap #629 as he featured alongside Keanu Baccus in the middle of the park. Both sides had early chances in front of a big crowd in Sydney, biut on 12 minutes the Socceroos found the opener. Craig Goodwin’s free-kick found Mitch Duke at the back stick, who stretches to volley the ball back across the face of the goal, where Irvine is waiting to fire home first time. It looked like Duke was in an offside position when he crossed, but the flag stayed down.

After both sides created half chances, it was Australia who struck first with Irvine tapping home his eighth goal for his country, however there was a question of offside on the goal with Mitch Duke appearing to stray ahead of the last defender. However, the lead only lasted 10 minutes with Torres equalising from Jeremy Sarmiento's recycled cross with a header that flew past Mat Ryan.

The big crowd was on the edge of their seats, as the game ebbed and flowed, but it was the Socceroos who reclaimed lead on the half hour mark, Irvine won a challenge of the edge of the box and slid in Mabil, and the Spart Prague winger blasted the ball home.

Arnold turned to his bench just beyond the hour mark. Manchester City youngster Alexander Robertson came on for his Australia debut and history in the process, becoming the first third-generation Socceroo following his grandfather (Alex Snr) and father (Mark), and he was involved in the Socceroo’s third goal seven minutes from time, he found another substitute Brendon Borrello, who played in Behich, whose low cross was turned home by Kuol, and the teenager finished well, but again it looked offside, but no flag, but it iced the game for Arnold’s side.

Leicester City defender Harry Souttar said the performance of the youngsters was pleasing. “So pleased for the boys, we saw some young boys playing tonight, unbelievable,” he said. “Aiden O’Neill making his debut, not going to get many boys better than that. Garang Kuol and Alex Robertson the future is really big.” Souttar went on to speak about the penalty claim involving Robertson. “He is still young, 18, 19, and I said to him I love that, that is what we are all about and I thought it was a penalty, to be honest. I am really pleased for him and all of the boys.”

Socceroos: GK Mat RYAN, 2 Milos DEGENEK, 4 Kye ROWLES, 11 Awer MABIL (21 Garang KUOL 78’), 15 Mitchell DUKE (10 Brandon BORRELLO 62’), 16 Aziz BEHICH, 17 Keanu BACCUS (26 Alex ROBERTSON 62’), 19 Harry SOUTTAR, 22 Jackson IRVINE (7 Connor METCALFE 90’), 23 Craig GOODWIN (6 Marco TILIO 78’), 24 Aiden O'NEILL - Subs not used: RGK Joe GAUCI, RGK Andrew REDMAYNE, 3 Nathaniel ATKINSON, 5 Thomas DENG, 8 Bailey WRIGHT, 9 Jason CUMMINGS, 13 Nestory IRANKUNDA, 14 Riley MCGREE, 20 Cameron DEVLIN, 25 Jordan BOS,

Ecuador: GK Wellington RAMIREZ, 2 Félix TORRES, 3 Piero HINCAPIE, 5 José CIFUENTES, 7 Pervis ESTUPINAN, 11 Michael ESTRADA (8 Kevin RODRIGUEZ 68’), 15 Ángel MENA (10 Junior SORNOZA 68’), 16 Jeremy SARMIENTO (9 Alexander ALVARADO 30’), 17 Ángelo PRECIADO (14 Xavier ARREAGA 68’), 20 Jhegson MENDEZ, 23 Moises CAICEDO Caicedo – Subs not used: RGK Alexander DOMINGUEZ, RGK Hernán GALINDEZ, 4 Joel ORDONEZ, 6 William PACHO, 18 Diego PALACIOS, 19 Marco ANGULO, 21 Alan Steven FRANCO

Attendance: 20,668 – Referee: Dae-Yong Kim



The State League Divison One and Two season preview is now updated with a full run down on the teams, see how season 2023 will pan out...



After last week’s thrilling opening round of the NPLMWA, week two looks like being another belter, and our ‘Match of the Round’ takes us to Dorrien Gardens where Perth SC hosts Sorrento. (All games kick off at 3pm unless stated) The Gulls stated life under new coach Steven McGarry with a big win against Bayswater City, while substitute Sam Cook earned Marc Wingell’s side a share of the spoils against Perth RedStar, so this one should be another good contest.

The last time the two sides met at the venue was in round four last season when the sides fought out a 0-0 draw. Both sides had their chances after the break Dean Cummings heading over the top, before Shubham Mokala shot flashed wide of the target, but both sides had to settle for the draw. With the form of both sides this season, a scoreless draw doesn’t look likely this time around, and Perth assistant coach Dale Wingell said they will take a lot of positives from the fightback last week against the RedStar’s.

“I thought in the first half it did take us a while to find our feet, but the second half was a different story, we dominated majority of possession and for the most part was in control,” he explained. “The boys that took the field were great, but what was even more pleasing was the individuals that came on really made some solid contribution, and you can’t go past Sam Cooke. He certainly took his chance and provided some extra energy for the team and a cool finish. In saying that at the other end a world class save at the death by Luke Radonich was a ‘game saver’ absolutely superb, that save would be up there with one of the best saves I’ve witnessed and ultimately preserved the deserved result.”

Wingell said Sorrento head into Saturday’s game on a high after their big win at Bayswater, so they need to be at their best to get the points. “Sorrento had a great first up result against Bayswater, so I’m sure they will be full of confidence heading into our encounter. They have always been a tough opponent and this will not change with Steve McGarry taking over, if anything his experience will give the players further confidence and possibly provide another dimension to their game,” he said. “But as respectful as we are of any opponents, we concentrate on ourselves and let them worry about us. There were some good signs against the RedStar’s and we continue to improve and perfect our performance, and with our pitch is in terrific condition, we are looking forward to a really competitive game.”

Sorrento defender Mark Barnett said the win at Bayswater was a really confidence boost after a disappointing Night Series. “It was the start to the season we needed, after a disappointing night series. We finished last season off very strong and it was disappointing that we couldn’t carry it into the preseason competition,” he explained. “I feel the couple weeks off has helped us regroup as a squad, get players back from injury and come back together and start well.

“Steven (McGarry) has come in and been brilliant for us, and in two weeks he has completely changed the style of football we were so accustomed to and we put that into the game against Bayswater. We were strong all over the park from the goal keeper all the way up to the strikers for 90 minutes, it was a complete performance from everyone involved. We’ve set our standards high and we will look to carry that through to the next round against Perth.”

Barnett said games against Perth are tough, and he’s not expecting anything different on Saturday, but they are determined to keep their winning run going. “We are looking forward to round two, after the first up win, and like I said we’ve set our standards with the performance at Bayswater and we still have so much to work on with the style of football we want to play this season,” the defender explained. “Perth have some quality, so we need to give them the respect they deserve or they will pounce on any mistakes made.”

In other games this weekend, both Cockburn City and Bayswater City will look to bounce back from first round defeats when they meet at Dalmatinac Park, likewise Olympic Kingsway and Floreat Athena who meet in the late game under their new lights at Kingsway Reserve. (7.00pm) Inglewood United welcome Balcatta to the Inglewood Stadium, and will look to continue their good start to the season, while Balcatta will look to bounce back from their narrow loss to Glory, while Stirling Macedonia, who won their opening game, head to the RedStar Arena to take on Perth RedStar, who will go in search of their first win of the season.

In final game early leaders Armadale will look to build on last week’s big home win against Cockburn, when they travel to Lark Hill Sportsplex, the new NPL home of Perth Glory. The hosts also started the season with a come from behind win at Balcatta, and John Walmsley’s side will hope to christen their new home with a win, but Armadale assistant coach Salv Todaro said they hope to build on last week’s solid performance. “Another big challenge for the team this week, which everyone is looking forward too, and we know Glory always plays an attractive game with some of the state’s best youngsters,” he explained.

“The boys played a very strong game last week, and were rewarded for their performance. They were extremely good in the period just after halftime, when Cockburn came out trying to get back into the game, they withstood the pressure placed on them and were able to take advantage of game plan by scoring some excellent goals. We also have a couple of exciting youngsters in our side too, and we’re looking forward to a good contest on the weekend.”



The 2023 State League Division One season kicks off this weekend, and after a high-quality night series recently, the season is expected to be a hotly contested, with a number of clubs in the mix for promotion. Our week one ‘Match of the Round’ takes us to Nash Field, where Western Knights Soccer Club welcome Gwelup Croatia SC. (All games kick off at 3pm unless stated)

Gwelup were relegated from the NPL last season and new coach Trim Morgan, who is a former coach at the Knights, will look to get off to a good start at home, while the Knights will be aiming for a return to the Premier League for the first time since 2012, so this one should be a thriller. The last time the two sides met at the venue was in round 3 in 2019, when Gwelup left Nash Field with a 3-2 win.

Gwelup new signing Charlie Breen has started life well at the club, and he is expecting a typical derby on Saturday. “It’s a massive game for the boys, this is what we’ve been training for all preseason, and I believe we can start the season well against a team that’s been at the top end of the league table for several years,” the striker explained. “It’s a huge game for us to show our quality and what we can do, against a good team like the Knights, the lads, and myself are all looking forward this occasion and good result against a top team.”

Knights assistant coach Carl Medica said what a way to start the season with a ‘Croatian Derby’ and he said they are ready for the challenge, in front of what should be a big crowd. “Everyone at the club is excited for the first games of the season, and playing against our Croatian rivals Gwelup, will no doubt add some further spice to the game,” he explained. We’re expecting a big crowd on hand on Saturday, so that will add to the spectacle.

“Gwelup were impressive in the Night Series, making the semi-finals like us, so we are well aware that we need to be at our best to come away with the points. Having played with Trim Morgan, and been coached by Willie Kelly during our successful period at the Knights many years ago, I expect this to be fierce battle, and we wouldn’t want it any other way.”

The round starts on Friday evening, when the night Series winners Mandurah City host newly-promoted Gosnells City at Securitas Protect Stadium (7.30pm) It will be a huge task for Ross Greer’s side, in his first league game in charge of the club, especially the way the hosts have been travelling and boosted by new signing of former Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths, but Gosnells skipper Scott Pereira said they head there looking to cause an upset.

“We are really looking forward to this Friday night’s game against Mandurah, the boys will be eager to show new coach Ross (Greer) what they can do,” he said. “It’s a massive test for us as we know the quality they have and what they’ve achieved in the night series it shows us the level we need to be at for this season in Division One, and we are expecting a big crowd down there and hope we can cause an upset.

In other games, Joondalup United welcome Dianella White Eagles too Forrest Park, Rockingham City make the trip to Hartfield Park to meet Forrestfield United, while Fremantle City entertain UWA Nedlands at Hilton Park, a week after they played out an eight-goal thriller in Australia Cup. In the final game Murdoch University Melville welcome Subiaco to the Besteam Stadium, at the Murdoch University campus.

Both sides had indifferent results last week in the Australia Cup, MUMFC comfortable winners against Cracovia, while Subiaco were beat at Division Two side Quinns. MUMFC keeper Tom Allen said after a strong pre-season they are looking forward to get the league campaign started. “This preseason has been one of the strongest to date, and with improvement in all area, it has created healthy competition within the group,” he explained.

“We have a lot of new faces in the squad but we seem to have gelled quickly and like everyone else, chopping at the bit for Saturday. Looking at results during the Night Series and friendlies, I don’t think there are many guaranteed three points in this league, and most teams have strengthened so our mentality is we go into every game like it’s a final because like we saw last year, every point matters.”



It’s week one of the State League Division Two, and our ‘Match of the Round’ takes us to the Swan Italian Club, Francis Street on Saturday afternoon, when Swan United host Joondalup City. (All games kick off at 3pm unless stated) Both sides performed well in the recent night series, and both moved onto the next round of the Australia Cup last weekend, Joondalup beating Wanneroo on penalties, while Swan beat Division One side Forrestfield United, so both go into the season in fine form.

The last time they met at the venue was in round three last season, with the hosts running out 3-0 winners. John Monterosso gave them the lead on the half hour, and the striker bagged a second midway through the second half. They sealed the points late, Jake Fritchley racing clear to score.

Swan coach Colin Morgan said things are progressing well at Francis Street, and he said they can’t wait to get the season started. “Niall and I are really pleased with the group so far, a nice win in the FFA Cup against Forrestfield was the perfect way to start our season, but on the day, it wasn't the best we've played, but to win ugly is a massive reflection of how far we've come in a short period of time,” he said. “Joondalup City will be a good test to start the season for all three sides. They were very strong last season across all three teams, and I'm sure they have looked to improve across the park to break into the top four.”

Joondalup coach Paul Welch said his young side are looking forward to the challenge at Swan, and building on their preseason form. “Our young squad has gone on leaps and bounds this season, and they are gelling really well, and we head into the season full of optimism,” he said. “A trip to Swan is always tough, with a small narrow pitch, but these are the challengers you have to overcome, and our young group are relishing the challenge, and getting the season off with a positive result.”

In other games, newly-promoted Maddington-Kalamunda White City begin their season with a trip to Princess Road Reserve to meet Balga, the recently merged club head into their first game in the State League since 2013. Ashfield welcome Morley Windmills to Ashfield Reserve, and both sides will have new coaches on the dugout, James Sammut for the hosts and Marc Anthony for the visitors. Canning City make the trip to Grandis Park to take on Carramar Shamrock Rovers, while Curtin University host Quinns at Edinburgh Oval on Saturday afternoon (5.30pm).

The final game is at Kingsway Reserve, when Kingsley Westside travel to take on Wanneroo City. The visitors finished fourth last season and coach Steven Dimitrovich said they are looking forward to get started this season. “The lads are really looking forward to Saturday season opener at Wanneroo, and there’s a great buzz around the team with a good win last week and lads fighting for spots for the first game at training during the week,” he explained. “Wanneroo will be a good test, as they look to climb the ladder from last year, so we are expecting a very hard-fought game.”



The Amateur League Night Series semi-final spots are up for grabs in all groups in this weekend’s round three fixtures. It kicks off on Saturday afternoon at Kelly Park, with the top two sides in Group B, Port Kennedy and Peel United meeting in the late game. (3.00pm) Port sit top of the group after back-to-back wins, and only need a point to go through, while Peel needs the three points. Peel new coach Daryl Willmont said he is expecting a tough game against a well organised team.

“Port Kennedy have recruited a lot of players in their top side so it will be a good game, and our lads have been training well and working very hard so we are all looking forward to the game,” he said. “There is lots to play for both teams, and whichever team gets the result ultimately goes through to the next phase of the competition, and we are doing everything we can at the training park to give us the chance to go up. At the end of the day it's always going to be a passionate game as they're a neighbouring club for us and many of the lads from either side know each other well, looking forward to it.” In the early game hosts Kwinana United take on South West Phoenix (1.00pm), both sides are out of contention.

On Sunday in Group A, we have three teams still in the mix, with Jaguar, North Perth United and Wembley Downs all going into the final game with hopes of moving into the knockout stage. In the early game leaders Jaguar meet second placed North Perth at the Ellenbrook Sports Hub. (5pm) Jags are in pole position and a win would see them progress, but North Perth need a win and then wait to see what happens in the late game at the venue, where Wembley Downs come up against Maccabi (7pm) Wembley will be hoping for a draw in the earlier game, then win their game to see them qualify.

It’s also tight in Group C, with North Beach, Joondalup United and Quinns in contention, and in the early game at Forrest Park leaders North Beach meet Quinns. (1pm) It’s the same scenario as group A, a win will see North Beach go through, but if Quinns win it could see them progress, and Joondalup United will be hoping for a draw and a win in the late game for them against East Perth (3pm) would see them go through. North Beach coach Nick Di Carlo knows Quinns will be tough. “As a group we are really excited for the opportunity that presents itself to us if we can take three points on the weekend,” he said.

“Our main focus over the Night Series (and pre-season as a whole) has been to see continual improvement as we edge towards round one of the new season. We have witnessed over the last few weeks what Quinns are about, and know we are coming up against an impressive outfit aiming to top the group and progress. As coaches, the most satisfying element has been witnessing the energy our young lads bring to the squad, and we hope we can replicate this on Sunday.”

Finally, in Group D, leaders Kelmscott Roos meet second placed Emerald in the early game at Beale Park. (1.00pm) A draw for the Roos will them go through, but Emerald needs a win, then wait and see what happens in the late game. Emerald coach Shane O’Donovan said they are looking forward to the challenge, and head there knowing they need to win. “We’re looking forward to a tough game against a good team,” he said.

“We have been playing well lately, but still have plenty of room for improvement, we are using this tournament to give every player an opportunity to impress but giving that, the opportunity to reach a semi-final or a final is always good and we will do our best to get there.” In the late game at the venue, South Perth United meet Southern Spirit (3.00pm). United need to win and hope for a positive result in the early game if they are to move through.



The 2023 NPLWA Women’s competition kicks off this weekend, and our ‘Match of the Round’ takes us to Hiton Park where Fremantle City entertain Murdoch University Melville (1.00pm) Fremantle finished the Night Series well, winning the 3rd place playoff against the NTC, and both sides go into the new season with a new coach at the helm. Faye Chambers leading City and David Biancuzzo in charge of MUMFC, and in their most recent meeting they fought out a 1-1 draw in the group stage of the night series.

Biancuzzo said after a good showing in the preseason, they go into the season confident. “We want to build from our night series results, where I thought we were unlucky to not reach the semi-finals,” he explained. “We know that Fremantle City will be a different team from our night series game, but we go into Sunday’s game confident that we can get a positive result. The players have been getting better week by week and we will be ready for the challenge that’s awaits us on Sunday.”

Champions Perth RedStar begin their title defence against the Hyundai NTC side (1.00pm) The sides meet in the Night Series group stage, RedStar running out 3-0 winners, and Head Coach Carlos Vega Mena was happy with his squad’s performance levels throughout pre-season despite losing the final, and is looking forward to the new season.

“Naturally, we are disappointed not to come out on top in the final of the Night Series but I am happy with the football we are playing,” he told the clubs website. “We know the task that is ahead of us and we are looking forward to getting underway. It’s clear to see we have great depth in our senior setup and I have a good idea of who is ready to help us in the first team, and who needs to work harder to gain an opportunity.”

In the other games Balcatta Etna welcome Curtin University at Grindleford Reserve. (3.00pm) It was a tough Night Series for new Curtin, but their new look young side will have gained some experience playing together, but they face a Balcatta side who re in good form, and just missed out on semi-final spot in the night series. Balcatta’s Lauren Continibali said they can’t wait for the new season.

“The girls are prepared and ready to go against Curtin, who we played in the night series. This gives us a confidence boost but we also know not to be complacent against a Curtin team that is capable of going forward and scoring goals,” Continibali explained. “We’re all looking forward to our first game of the season for 2023, we are focused on our formation and working together a group to get the ball forward through the midfield and score goals.” In the final game Night Series winners Perth Sc start their campaign with a home game against Subiaco at Dorrien Gardens (4.00pm)



The draw for the Australia Cup (WA) fourth round was made on Thursday evening at Football West headquarters, and there will be 16 ties across the metropolitan area with games played on the weekend of April 22 and 23. Holders of the cup Cockburn City make the trip to Lark Hill, to take on Division One side Rockingham City, while last season's runners up Armadale, also travel away to face Division One opposition when they meet Gwelup Croatia at the Croatian Sporting Complex.

The last WA regional side left in the Australia Cup Busselton City, who beat Port Kennedy in the last round, will travel to Walter Padbury Reserve to take on Division One side Gosnells City. There are some intriguing ties, Division One side Fremantle City welcome Perth SC to Hilton Reserve, and there is only one all-NPL encounter between Olympic Kingsway and Bayswater City, while State League Night Series winners Mandurah City are at fellow Division One side Western Knights.

There are three NPL-v-Belt Up Amateur League games – Floreat Athena host Jaguar at E&D Litis Stadium, Stirling Macedonia welcome North Beach to Macedonia Park, while Perth AFC entertain Inglewood United at Len Packham Park. There also three ties between NPL teams and sides from State League Division Two – Perth RedStar travel to Chichester Park to take on Kingsley Westside, Ashfield make the trip to Percy Doyle Reserve to meet Sorrento, while Balcatta Etna host Joondalup City at Grindleford Reserve

There is three all Division Two games, with Maddington-Kalamunda White City host Quinns at Maida Vale Recreation Reserve, Curtin University meet Balga at Edinburgh Oval, while Swan United welcome Carramar Shamrock Rovers to Francis Street. The other tie is between Division One side Murdoch University Melville meets Amateur Premier Division club South Perth United at the Besteam Stadium.

Full draw – Maddington-Kalamunda White City v Quinns, Sorrento v Ashfield, Kingsley Westside v Perth RedStar, Floreat Athena v Jaguar, Perth AFC v Inglewood United, Gosnells City v Busselton City, Rockingham City v Cockburn City, Gwelup Croatia v Armadale, Curtin University v Balga, Stirling Macedonia v North Beach, Murdoch University Melville v South Perth United, Western Knights v Mandurah City, Balcatta Etna v Joondalup City, Swan United v Carramar Shamrock Rovers, Olympic Kingsway v Bayswater City, Fremantle City v Perth SC



Perth Glory returns to home soil on Sunday, when they entertain Melbourne City in Week 19 of the Liberty A-League at Macedonia Park. (3.00pm) It’s a vital game for Alex Epakis’ side, and it will be last at home this season, and with a five-point gap to Melbourne Victory in the playoff spot, it’s a huge three points.

It will also be a sad day after Glory defender Kim Carroll announced her retirement from the game at the end of the season, and with it being the final home game of the season the coach said they will be doing it for Kim. The former Matildas defender announced her 15-year professional career would end at the end of the season earlier this week, and Epakis is confident that Carroll’s teammates will do everything they can to ensure she signs off at Macedonia Park on a winning note.

“Everyone in the group has a lot of respect and love for Kim and that emotion was definitely shared when she announced it,” he said. “I imagine it will be even more so on Sunday and rightly so, because she’s been a fantastic servant for the club and the game in general. She deserves all the accolades and the praise and I’m just really pleased that she’s been able to do it on her terms. That provides extra motivation for the team to put on a performance that she’ll remember as her last home game.”

With three games left to play in the regular season, they need results elsewhere to go their way, but do have a game in hand on Victory, so three points on Sunday is essential, and Epakis is quietly confident that Glory can get the job done. “I think it’s really important that while we know what’s ahead, we don’t look too far ahead and we just take it match by match, starting with this weekend,” he said. “There’s a real opportunity there for us if we’re really focused and committed and then a day later, we’ll be on our way to Sydney for that test and then on to Brisbane, so it’s step by step.

“When you look at City’s squad and their playing style, they move the ball well, have some really good technical players, they’re balanced across the field and have a clear identity in terms of what they try to do. Ultimately, we have to match that. We need to be really good with the ball when we have it and strong without the ball when we don’t have it. If we do those things, we give ourselves a chance. We’re taking a bit of inspiration from our previous match against them earlier in the season. I thought that we had a really strong performance that day and that was in the middle of a really congested period of fixtures for us. We had some really good opportunities and I’ve done my best to highlight that to our team just to remind them that we can go toe-to-toe with them and with anyone.”

Epakis said the home support will be vital on Sunday, as they go in search of a top four finish. “They’ve played a really important role to date and contributed to a positive atmosphere which I know the players really enjoy playing in,” he said. “Given that it is the last [home] game, we’d love to see more of them and we’ll do our best to make sure that occasion is worthwhile for them to come to.”

Glory goes into the game with a healthy squad, only Susan Phonsongkham (foot) and Rylee Baisden (knee) are missing. Meanwhile City have added Rhianna Pollicina to their travelling squad, and their form has been indifferent in recent weeks, with their last six games yielding two wins, three defeats and a draw. The last time Glory played City at home was in round 13 in 2021, when City left with all three points after a Rhali Dobson goal gave them a 1-0 win at Dorrien Gardens.

Perth Glory Squad: GK Morgan AQUINO, GK Sarah LANGMAN, 3 Kim CARROLL, 4 Natasha RIGBY, 6 Tijan MCKENNA, 7 Liz ANTON, 8 Hana LOWRY, 9 Demi KOULIZAKIS, 12 Sofia SAKALIS, 13 Sarah CAIN, 14 Hannah BLAKE, 15 Cyera HINTZEN, 16 Isabella WALLHEAD, 17 Abbey GREEN, 18 Sadie LAWRENCE, 19 Izzy FOLETTA, 21 Ella MASTRANTONIO, 23 Alana JANCEVSKI - Ins: MCKENNA, WALLHEAD - Outs: None - Unavailable: 10 Susan PHONSONGKHAM (foot), 11 Rylee BAISDEN (knee)

Melbourne City Squad: GK Sally JAMES, GK Sophia VARLEY, 3 Naomi CHINNAMA, 4 Chelsea BLISSETT, 6 Leticia MCKENNA, 7 Julia GROSSO, 8 Kaitlyn TORPEY, 9 Holly McNAMARA, 10 Rhianna POLLICINA, 14 Katie BOWEN, 15 Emma CHECKER, 17 Hannah WILKINSON, 19 Maria ROJAS, 21 Isabella ACCARDO, 22 Bryleeh HENRY, 24 Daniela GALIC, 25 Darcey MALONE - In: POLLICINA (promoted), Outs: None - Unavailable: 5 Tori TUMETH (ACL), 16 Karly ROESTBAKKEN (foot), 18 Leah DAVIDSON (ankle), 20 Caitlin KARIC (knee), 23 Melissa BARBIERI (calf)



Optus Stadium is set to host its second English Premier League blockbuster games in the space of a year, with a pair of English giants heading to Perth. West Ham United will take on Perth Glory on Saturday July 15, before the Hammers take on London rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Tuesday July 18.

The friendlies will provide the perfect precursor to Perth’s Women’s World Cup games, which kick off with Denmark taking on China at Perth Oval on July 22. Perth will then host Canada vs Ireland, Panama vs Jamaica, Denmark vs Haiti and Morocco vs Colombia in the following fortnight. It means there will be seven high-profile matches in Perth within a 20-day period.

Tottenham boast an array of superstars, including England captain Harry Kane, South Korean forward Son Heung-min, Brazilian star Richarlison and World Cup-winners Hugo Lloris and Christian Romero. Fans of West Ham will hope to see their biggest stars, England internationals Declan Rice and winger Jarrod Bowen as well as Brazilian world cup star Lucas Paqueta.

Tourism minister Roger Cook said the two upcoming Optus Stadium games and the Women’s World Cup matches would provide a significant economic boost. “We know these high-profile sporting matches have a strong economic impact and I’m pleased the WA Government, through Tourism WA and its partners, have continued to secure these major sporting events,” he said.

Sport and recreation minister David Templeman said the matches would be a great entree to the World Cup. “Hosting such prestigious football events is great for the grassroots game - kids will be inspired and spurred on to give the game a go themselves,” he said. “I am so pleased that Western Australia is supporting these matches in addition to the FIFA Women’s World Cup.”



Long-serving Perth Glory defender Kim Carroll has announced she will hang up her playing boots to the end of the current A-League Women season. The 35-year old is in her seventh season with the club for whom she has made a total of 91 appearances, while her career tally in the competition passed the 150-mark earlier this year.

Carroll joined Glory ahead of the 2015/16 campaign having won a Premiership and two Championships with Brisbane Roar and immediately became a cornerstone of the club’s defence. One of the domestic competition’s greatest ever defenders, she sits fourth position in Glory’s all-time record appearances list.

Carroll also enjoyed a storied international career, winning 54 Matildas caps and being a part of Australia’s squad which claimed the AFC Women’s Asian Cup in 2010. Having started in all but one of Glory’s games this season, the defender admits the decision to hang up her boots at the end of it had not been an easy one to make.

“In the last couple of seasons, it’s been in the back of my mind,” Carroll said. “I’d love to play forever, but that’s not reality. The plan was to stop when I stopped enjoying it, but that hasn’t been the case as I’m still enjoying it and I’m keeping up and I’m competitive. But it just feels like the right time.”

“I wanted to finish on my terms, not play on until I’m not enjoying it and I’m ready for the next chapter in my life. I’ve got a partner now and I’m looking to enjoy life outside football. Perth means a lot to me and it’s become home in a sense and the fans have been great over the years.”

“I’d like to thank my partner and my family, along with the fantastic players that I’ve played with throughout my career. There’s also my boss at work, who has been really understanding and there have been a lot of coaches and support staff along the way and people at clubs that I’ve kept in touch with.”

“Once the season finishes, it’ll be nice to have a relaxing holiday and then I’ll focus on my other career and hopefully a family.” Carroll’s final home appearance for the Glory will be Sunday’s crunch clash with Melbourne City at Macedonia Park.



It was round three of the Australia Cup (WA) this weekend, and they were a couple of shocks, but not in our Match of the Round, where Murdoch University Melville thrashed Cracovia 10-0 at the Cracovia Sporting Club. The State League Division One dominated throughout, with Iljas Ahmedovs scoring six goals, Christos Vaenas bagging a brace, with singles to Taj Bingwa 1 Eddie Wynne-Willson, which sees them move into the fourth round.

There was a shock at the Swan Italian Club, Francis Street, when Division Two side Swan United beat Division One side Forrestfield United 2-1, with a brace from James Owen. “It was a good win against a youthful well organised Forrestfield side,” Swan striker John Monterosso said. “It was a typical cup game and was not the prettiest at times, but sometimes you have to win ugly and the work rate was there from everyone to get the win.” The other shock came at Gumblossom Park where Division Two side Quinns beat Division One side Subiaco 4-1.

Ashfield were given a scare but goals from Yanis Hamadi, Jared Flavel and Gareth Hamilton saw them beat Football Margaret River 3-2. “We didn’t know much about Margaret River or what to expect and the game was very competitive,” Ashfield coach James Sammut said. “We didn’t execute how we would have liked in our final third, but that’s football at times so we will get back to the training track to continue to work on our game. It’s pleasing to get the result and move into the next round although we move on pretty quick with the league kicking off this week.”

Kingsley Westside proved too strong for Morley Windmills, running out 2-0 winners, with first half goals from Ilya Nebylytsya and Josh Waldock. “A good win against a well drilled organised side in Morley. We had a way we wanted to play from the start and for large parts of the game I thought we did it well,” Kingsley coach Steven Dimitrovich explained. “We spoke about been solid off the ball and was really pleased with our work rate. Also, good to get a second clean sheet to round out preseason, as we prepare for Wanneroo on Saturday night.”

In the other Saturday games, Western Knights came home from Burrendah Reserve with a 6-0 win against Canning City, with goals from Alex Kretowicz, Jack Bardsley, Shay Donovan, Paul Lloyd, Ben Campbell and Albert Luwi, while goals from Samir Ramos and Farruh Mavlonov gave Maddington-Kalamunda White City a 2-1 win against North Perth United at Maida Vale Reserve.

Balga overcame Wembley Downs 3-1 at Princess Road Reserve. Nathan Scully got the opener after two minutes, before Kevin Gallo made it 2-0 on the half hour. Nikola Zmukic made it 3-0 just before the break, but Wembley did not give up, and came out firing in the second half, and Balga keeper Peter Pilkadaris made a number of fine saves, however Wembley scored one late on, with Dave Brownless on target to make the final score 3-1, while Fremantle City won an eight-goal thriller at the UWA Sports Park, beating UWA Nedlands 5-3.

Mandurah City have continued their good preseason, beating fellow Division One side Joondalup United 2-0 at Forrest Park, Joe O’Brien scoring from the spot, before Craig Barker got the second. Rockingham City beat Noranda City 6-1 at Lark Hill Sportsplex, with Jayden Leader scoring a hat-trick, Robbie Duckmanton with a pair, and another from Will Hayes, while Joondalup City beat Wanneroo City 4-2 on penalties, after the game ended 1-1.

Carramar Shamrock Rovers beat Kwinana United 3-1 at Grandis Park, while a hat-trick from Kieran Witt helped Curtin University to a 7-0 win against Peel United at Edinburgh Oval. “After a strong preseason it was good to start the season with a win to progress to the next round,” Witt said. “Opponents from lower divisions can be dangerous, so it was great to come away with a big win even though their keeper made some outstanding saves.”

It also went to penalties at Dianella Reserve, with Gwelup Croatia beating hosts Dianella White Eagles 4-2 in the shootout. Charlie Breen gave Gwelup the lead at the break, but Daniel Mackenzie levelled 14 minutes from time. In the shootout Gwelup scored all there’s and Charlie Chechlacz converted the winner. “The win was huge for the team and will give us a lot of confidence heading into the league next week,” Chechlacz said. “It was a great effort from the boys and we showed great fight. We will prepare well with a good week of training and make sure we’re ready for another big test in the league.”

In Sunday’s games Gosnells City were given a scare by Ballajura, before running out 4-1 winners. The visitors were ahead early with Brandon Rector scoring, but Miguel Oliveira levelled just before the break. Gosnells keeper Jack Adams kept his side in the game with a couple of great saves after the break, and it was Josh Spencer who fired home a long-free kick to give the hosts the lead. Jamie Burns then converted from the spot after he was brought down by the keeper, before Scott Pereira added the fourth late.

Port Kennedy’s good form ended, after they were beaten 1-0 by Busselton City at Churchill Park, while goals from Akuei Guot, Magai Deng and Ayella Joesph gave Jaguar a 3-1 win against Perth Royals. North Beach was too good for Woodvale, with James Ashford scoring four, with Keiran Moores scored 1them a 5-0 win, Perth AFC thrashed Eaton Dardanup 9-0, while in the final tie South Perth United proved too strong for Hamersley Rovers running out 4-1 winners. Jack Dalla Via opened the scoring, before Alex Godfrey’s shot was deflected in by a Rovers defender. Dalla Via added another, before Cedric Chauveau scored the fourth on his debut for the club.



Stirling Macedonia have started the 2023 NPLMWA season with a hard fought 2-1 win against newly promoted Olympic Kingsway, in our ‘Match of the Round’ at Macedonia Park on Saturday evening. English import Kingsley Eshun gave the hosts the hosts the lead on the night, but Olympic, who won the Night Series last week, hit back with last season’s top goalscorer Ciaran Byrne levelling before the break. The hosts regained the lead early in the second half with Taiga Matoba on target, and that turned out to be the winner, despite Olympic pressing late.

“Going into the match we knew that Kingsway would be tough, and we felt they would be confident coming off the night series win, but we also feel that our collective best is better than the rest of this league,” Stirling defender Brent Quick said. “Kingsley scoring and assisting is huge for us, it is like a missing piece of the puzzle, and defensively we feel sound and that we’re only going to get better as this league goes on. I can’t speak more highly of our team, and I thought everyone did their Job and contributed toward a tough win against a tough side.”

Both sides had early chances, Olympic new signing Ollie Annis’ in swinging corner was flicked around the post by James Bosdet, before Alex Tanevski fired wide of the target at the other end. But on 32 minutes the hosts found the opener, Giles Davies’ free kick wasn’t dealt with, and Eshun’s shot on the turn flew past Olympic custodian Dave Keenan, much to the delight of the home faithful. But five minutes later the visitors restored parity. Daniel Walsh’s diagonal pass found Calum O’Connell on the left, his first-time ball into the box was met by Byrne, who swept the ball home clinically from the edge of the penalty area.

Olympic went close early in the second half, Taylor Garner raced clear down the right, and his low cross to the back post was inches away from the sliding Byrne. The hosts hit back, Calvin Whitney’s free kick was punched clear by Keenan, but only as far as Hristijan Jankuloski, whose looping header crashed off the crossbar, and Tanevski’s follow up shot flash just wide. But on 56 minutes, Stirling’s pressure was rewarded as they regained the lead.

Whitney found Eshun on the right, and he eased past his marker and crossed to the unmarked Matoba at the back post, he controlled the ball well before drilling his shot low past Keenan. It was almost 3-1 ten minutes later, a quick free kick from Luke Palmateer caught Olympic napping, it found Daniel Zivkovic and his first-time volley flashed wide of the far post. Stirling were having the better chances, Whitney’s long-range shot flew wide, before Matoba’s goal bound shot was blocked on the line.

Olympic pressed late looking for the equaliser, and Walsh headed over the top but they couldn’t find it, and it went from bad to worse for them, when substitute David Perich was sent off by referee Steven Gregory in stoppage time. “It was a great start to the season, and it was a good game with two decent footballing sides,” Stirling keeper James Bosdet said. “Thankfully we had the better of the chances and got the three points in the derby, especially in front of our home fans.”



Steven McGarry started his tenure at Sorrento with an emphatic 4-1 win against Bayswater City at Frank Drago Reserve on Friday evening. Colombian Gustavo Giron-Marulanda was the star on the night, the former Bayswater striker coming back to haunt his former club scoring a hat-trick, while Mark Withers added the other, Jon Stynes scored the consolation goal for the hosts.

“It’s always good to start off the season with goals, and a hattrick made it special at a special place for me,” Marulanda explained. “It seems every time I play at Frank Drago the goals open up for me, so I’m pleased and grateful for it, but overall, it was a great team performance from start to end from the lads tonight.”

The visitors were ahead on ten minutes, Tim Hill and new English recruit John Connelly combined to find skipper Dean Cummings on the edge of the box, who helped the ball on to Marulanda, and the former Bayswater striker fired low past Nic Speca. Marulanda was in again just before the half hour, this time he did all the work himself, twisting and turning on the edge of the box before finding the bottom corner of the net, and the visitors led by two at the break.

The home side found a lifeline 12 minutes into the second half, Declan Hargreaves’ cross picked out Stynes, who beat Sorrento keeper Patrick Hughes to the ball to head home from close-range. But that was as good as it got for the hosts, and seven minutes later Sorrento added a third. A long clearance wasn’t dealt with by Bayswater defender Thomas Southgate, and Marulanda raced onto the ball, with Columbian striker rounded Speca and rolled the ball home to complete his hat-trick.

It was 4-1 four minutes later, Connelly made space down the left and crossed to new American import Withers, who finished from five meters to seal a memorable victory for McGarry’s side. “Very pleased with both the result and performance, we obviously had to be wary and respect the threats that Bayswater poised and had a plan to nullify that, so in that respect we done a great job,” McGarry explained.

“I thought we were really dangerous going forward and could have scored a couple more and Gustavo should take massive plaudits for his three goals, that second goal wouldn’t look out of place in any top league. Going down to 10 men when Brownie went off through injury gave me a little insight to their character, their willingness to really work hard for each other and cover a little more ground, it really summed up the performance. It’s a nice start but it’s only one game and I think the group want and understand the need to keep improving.”



Perth SC and Perth RedStar have fought out an entertaining 1-1 draw at Dorrien Gardens on Saturday afternoon. Daryl Nicol carried on where he left from last season, scoring the opener for the visitors, and they should have had a few more, but Azzurri keeper Luke Radonich was outstanding, producing a number of fine saves. They become more important ten minutes from time when substitute Sam Cook found the equaliser for Marc Wingell’s side.

“I thought we were excellent today and we created more than enough chances to win, unfortunately Luke Radonich was excellent also and made some unbelievable saves to keep Perth in the game,” RedStar coach Callum Salmon explained. “If not for Luke the game would’ve been over at half time, my team were first class, deserved to win but that’s football and that’s why this league is so difficult. Credit to Perth for staying in the game and getting a point. We still have a lot of improvement to come but today we were amazing at times and I am already looking forward to seeing how we perform next week.”

Both sides had early chances in this one, Archie Whitfield shot on the turn was well saved by Riley Stephenson, before Nicol fired wide after bring picked out by Declan Hughes. Chok Dau was then denied by a block in the box, as the visitors started to take control, and they found the opener on 35 minutes, Nicol was brought down on the edge of the box, and he curled the resulting free kick past Radonich and into the top corner of the net.

RedStar were in control again after the break, but they couldn’t find a way past Radonich, and ten minutes from time Perth found the equaliser, substitute Cook held off his marker before finishing with aplomb past Stephenson. The visitors almost found the winner late in the game, but Radonich produced the save of the game to deny Hughes, so the points were shared.

“It was a tough game yesterday, and I thought Redstar started the game really well and had the better chances in the first half,” Radonich said. “I felt in the second half we controlled the game more and created some good chances and thought we deserved the draw. We will build on this result and there were a lot of positives to take away from the game.



Perth Glory have made a winning start to the tenure of new Head Coach John Walmsley, after coming from behind to beat Balcatta Etna 2-1 at Grindleford Reserve. Japanese import Kotaro Yamamoto gave the hosts the lead mid-way through the second half, but Laat Mathiang levelled moments later. It looked like the points would be shared, but I’m the final minute Corey Sutherland fired home to give the Glory youngsters the points.

“We knew that heading down to Grindleford, was always going to be tough, due to the narrowness of the pitch and how compact they make themselves, making it difficult to break them down,” Glory’s Laat Mathiang explained. “We had all the possession in the first half but no goals to cater for, nonetheless John (Walmsley) told us to keep doing what we’re doing, the goals will come.

“Unfortunately, they got the first of the goals in the second half, but that gave us an extra kick to keep probing and eventually get back on level terms through a brilliant free-kick, and we got the winner late. The boys were brilliant throughout the game, stayed resilient and had a never die attitude till the very end.”

Both sides had chances in a tight first half, but all the goal action came after the break, and it was the hosts who found the opener on 70 minutes. A ball over the top sent Josh Marshall racing clear, and he was brought down by Danny Douglas, and referee Julian Serra pointed straight to the spot. Yamamoto stepped up and found the bottom corner of the net from the resulting penalty.

But five minutes later Glory restored parity, after they were awarded a free kick 20 meters from goal, and Mathiang curled it home superbly, giving Balcatta keeper Domenic Savoldelli no chance. Both sides went for the winner, but it was Glory who found it in stoppage time, Daniel Bennie made space down the right and his cross found Sutherland who steered the ball home from close-range.

“It was a tricky game against a Balcatta team who were compact and were a threat on restarts,” Glory coach John Walmsley explained. “The ball was only in play for 50 minutes with 11 minutes of injury time, so tough conditions to deal with, but the boys were resilient, managed the match well and fought until the end to get the result.”



Inglewood United produced the comeback of the round, fighting back from two goals down at half time to beat Champions Floreat Athena 3-2 at E&D Litis Stadium on Saturday evening. It looked like the hosts were on course for the points at the break, after goals from Nik Ambrogio and Bayley Brown-Montgomery had them in control. But United had other ideas, Shubham Mokala pulled one back early in the second half, and they levelled on the hour with Dhours Chol scoring, and they won it eight minutes later, with Mokala adding his second, to give coach Andres Oliveira a winning start to the season.

“What a game for the spectators, I thought we had control of the game, but the reason Floreat won the league, they have players that can turn the game at any moment and that’s what did to us on our mistakes,” Oliveira said. “There wasn’t much I could say to the players at halftime because we dominated, the only thing missing was being ruthless and better quality in the opposition last third, which the guys came out and showed it. All three goals were quality, superb finish from Shubham, with the free kick and the winner, but also the backline did excellent to hold onto the win.”

The hosts made the best possible start on four minutes, Brown-Montgomery’s free kick crashed off the crossbar, but Ambrogio was quickest to the rebound, heading home. They doubled their advantage just after the half hour, Inglewood lost possession in the middle of the park, and Phil Arnold raced clear, before slipping in Brown-Montgomery, who finished clinically past Alex Dunn.

But Inglewood was back in the game three minutes into the second half, after Chad Nielson was brought down by Ethan Mom just outside the penalty area, and Mokala curled home the resulting free kick, despite Jason Saldaris getting a hand to it. It was game on and ten minutes later they drew level. Again, Floreat lost possession and conceded a free kick, and Matthew Ntumenopulous’ set-piece was headed home by Chol. Then on 67 minutes, the comeback was completed, Nielson was denied by Jason Saldaris, but the rebound fell to Mokala, whose shot took a deflection before lobbing over the standard Floreat custodian.

“A great comeback win against last year’s league winners, and we know how they play football and what they do to make it difficult for teams and they definitely got the upper hand early with two quick goals,” Inglewood defender Ciaran Salinger said. “Even though we controlled the game, it counted for nothing as we weren’t as clinical in the first half as we would have like to be, but after half time there was an increase in energy about the way we played and once we scored one it looked nearly impossible for us not to score another one. It’s a tough place to go, but definitely a resilient performance, and something to build on going forward this season.”



Armadale have opened their 2023 NPLM WA season with an emphatic 6-1 win against Cockburn City in the local derby at Alfred Skeet Reserve on Saturday afternoon. First half goals from Amir Ajan, Chis Jackson and a Daniel Robinson penalty sent the hosts into the break on top. Cockburn pulled one back early in second half with Jesse Lazzaro scoring from the spot.

But Armadale weren’t to be denied and Robinson converted another penalty on 67 minutes, with Cockburn defender Daniel Dols sent off after pulling back Jackson in the box. From then on, the hosts took control, with Peter Jacobsz adding a fifth before Ajan scored the sixth with a stunning effort from the half way line.

“We’ve had a great run throughout preseason and especially in the night series, it was a shame how we went out but we definitely bounced back today,” Armadale defender Emerson Alexis said. “With some clean passages of play, tight defending and clinical finishes, our hard work defiantly paid off, and the 6-1 a great scoreline to kick start our season. We are now looking forward to our next challenge away at Perth Glory.”

It was a tight opening with chances at both ends, Jackson, who was playing his first game back in his second spell at Armadale, saw a shot on the run saved low by former Armadale keeper Michael Craggs, before Raphael Gomba raced clear for the visitors, but couldn’t keep his shot down. But on 23 minutes Armadale found the opener, Ajan was sent into the box by Tim Berger’s deft through ball, and he finished clinically past Craggs. Then three minutes later it was 2-0, Jacobsz picking out Jackson on the left of the penalty area, and he cut inside his marker and finished with aplomb.

Cockburn were shell-shocked, but Ivan Skorich almost reduced the margin on the half hour, but his shot on the turn was just over the top. They were almost in again two minutes before the break, Lazzaro was found clear inside the box, but a great last-ditch block from Alexis cleared the danger. But in the final minute Armadale were awarded a penalty, after Jeff Bright was deemed to have handled Berger’s cross, and Robinson stepped up and sent Craggs the wrong way to send them in 3-0 at the break.

Cockburn found a lifeline five minutes into the second half, after Ethan Levitt’s tackle on Jeff Bright was deemed to be a penalty by referee Shane Skinner, and Lazzaro sent Gharsallah the wrong way to pull one back. It was Armadale still creating the better chances and on 66 minutes the game took another twist, after Jackson was clear on goal, and he was pulled back by Dols, and the referee pointed to the spot and sent the Cockburn defender off. Robinson stepped up and converted the resulting penalty to make it 4-1.

They went close to a fifth moments later, Ajan’s free kick looked destined for the top corner but Cragg produced a stunning save to deny him. But on 76 minutes they did find a fifth, Andres Jnr made space down the left, his deep cross was headed back by Jackson and Jacobsz volleyed home. Then in stoppage time it was 6-1, and the goal of the game. Ajan was found in the middle of the park he drove forward and from just inside the Cockburn half, he saw Craggs off his line, and his first time shot flew over the standard Cockburn keeper and into the net to secure the comprehensive win.

“There can’t be a better way to start the season, we got off to a flying start, this is what we have prepared for and I couldn’t be happier with the performance from the boys,” Ajan said. “Personally I want to thank the Armadale supporters getting behind the boys as well as the coaching staff, we are looking forward to continuing the way we have started the season.”



Perth SC held their nerve in a tense penalty shootout, to secure their first trophy since the start of the NPLWA, after they recovered from 2-0 down to beat Perth RedStar in Sunday’s Night Series final at E&D Litis Stadium. It was a thriller with goals from Sarah Carroll and Reina Kagami giving the RedStar the advantage at the break, but the Azzurri bounced back with goals from Abbey Meakins and Judy Connolly drew them level, and they won in a sudden death shootout.

“I'm proud of the fightback more than anything, there is a new found resilience and determination within this team that never lays down and this is the type of mindset that wins you silverware,” a delighted Perth coach Peter Rakic said. “I thought we started the game brightly despite going into half time 2-0 down, so the message was clear, I was confident we were still in the match and the girls were too.

“You could argue that last season, if we were in this position we probably would have gone out and lost by three or four and dropped our heads after that first half, but things have changed in a really good way. We know we have a huge task in front of us if we are to challenge Redstar all season, but last night's comeback definitely gives us a taste of what we have to fight for.”

It was a bright start from Perth, but it was the RedStar’s who made their chances count. They found the opener on the half hour, Renee Leota was brought down by Sophia Papalia, and the referee pointed to the spot. Carroll stepped up and made no mistake with the resulting penalty. They doubled their lead ten minutes later, a neat back heel from Chiora Ikeda found Kagami, who finished low past Rebecca Bennett.

Perth found a lifeline with 19 minutes remaining, Connolly was tripped by Andreia Teixeira, and it was another penalty, and Meakins converted, and it was game on. RedStar were denied by Perth custodian Bennett, she produced two fine saves to deny Ikeda and Coleman, while Maya Diedrichsen also produced some fine saves at the other end. But six minutes from time Perth levelled, Connolly made space down the left, before cutting inside her marker and finishing into the far corner, much to the delight of the Azzurri supporters.

It was off to penalties, and at 7-6, RedStar skipper Coleman fired wide, to hand the Night Series to Perth. “I suppose we wanted to keep it exciting,” Perth’s Jamie Duncanson joked. “It was a tough fought game, and to come back from 2-0 we were very happy. We’ve got that mentality this year to fight for everything. We stuck to our game plan, and got the job done.

“We had some confidence from the penalties the week before, and although a few of our penalty takers were off, collectively we were quietly confident. Special mention to Judy for her impact in the game, and Faye who’s first touch of the game was tucking her penalty away in the bottom corner.” In the earlier game Fremantle City defeated Hyundai NTC 2-0 in the third-place game, Jamie Lee-Gale and Rhianna Lulitanond scoring the goals.



Perth Glory have kept their finals hopes alive, after Ryan Williams headed home six minutes into stoppage-time to secure a dramatic 2-2 draw with Newcastle Jets in the Isuzu Ute A-League round 21 clash at McDonald Jones Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Ruben Zadkovich’s side fell behind late in the first half with Trent Buhagiar headed home at the back post.

But they restored parity early in the second half, with Trent Ostler marking his first start of the season, by heading home Jack Clisby’ scorner. But it looked like the points would be lost after Kosta Grozos fired home from the edge of the box 11 minutes from time, but deep into stoppage time Williams lost his marker to head Keegan Jelacic corner to give them a vital point, the draw moved Glory to within three points of the Finals places, after Sydney Fc were thrashed 4-0 in the Sydney Derby against the Wanderers.

The Head Coach lost key men David Williams and Mustafa Amini to injury and illness respectively in the build-up to the game, but he was delighted how his side performed again. “We really wanted the three points, and I felt like we could get them,” Zadkovich said post-match. “There some patches of play from us that were really positive, especially at the start of the second half and I thought we got ourselves on top, but we missed a few moments, gave away a few chances and in the end, we take the point.

“It was backs-to-the-wall for us today having lost our leading scorer [Williams] in our final training session to a light strain and then we lost our captain on gameday to a vomiting bug. That bug went through the team a bit and there were some other boys who were carrying, so there were some fatigued bodies and a lot of tired legs out there. We got to the airport in Perth at 8am yesterday and got here at 9pm last night. Given the context of all those things, I thought we showed great character in adversity. I thought we showed great belief in coming back from being down twice and it’s just another testament to the character that’s in my dressing room.”

Glory made just the one change to the starting side that beat Western Sydney Wanderers last week, with Trent Ostler coming in for the suspended Jordan Elsey, while the return of skipper Amini was put on hold. The hosts were first to go close, Jason Hoffman shot from five meters was saved low by Cameron Cook, before Ostler was picked out by Aaron McEneff on the half hour, his shot from the edge of the box produced a smart save from Michael Weier. But on 36 minutes it was the hosts who found the opener, Manabu Saito made space down the left, and his cross to the back post was headed home by Buhagiar.

Glory hit back seven minutes into the second half, Jack Clisby’s corner to the back post was meet by Ostler, and the youngster’s header nestled in the corner of the net. That lifted the Glory and Clisby went close to giving them the lead moments later, but his shot flashed the wrong side of the upright. The Jets had their chances to, and on the hour, Buhagiar sent Saito into goal, but Cook stood tall to save.

The Glory custodian came to the rescue again moments later, saving well to deny the lively Buhagiar, but on 79 minutes the hosts regained the lead. A cross from the right deflected off Clisby into the path of Grozos, who finished clinically from the edge of the box. Glory pressed late looking for the equaliser and substitute Jacob Dowse crossed to Williams three minutes from time, but he couldn’t find the target.

Then in the fifth minute of stoppage time Williams sent Adam Taggart into goal, but Weier stood tall to deny him. It looked like Glory would leave empty-handed, but Williams had other ideas. Jelacic in swinging corner picked out the former Portsmouth midfielder, whose glancing header beat Weier to level. “(It’s) disappointing to concede off two set-pieces because apart from that there hasn’t been too much in it,” Jets coach Arthur Papas said post-match. “For us it’s a disappointment, drawing a game… but for them, they felt like they won a grand final.”

Newcastle Jets: GK Michael WEIER, 3 Jason HOFFMAN (2 Dane INGHAM 66'), 4 Manabu SAITO (18 Daniel STYNES 79'), 5 Matthew JURMAN, 6 Brandon O’NEILL (14 Mohamed AL-TAAY 82'), 7 Trent BUHAGIAR, 9 Beka MIKELTADZE, 17 Kosta GROZOS (19 Callum TIMMINS 82'), 25 Carl JENKINSON, 32 Angus THURGATE, 39 Thomas AQUILINA - Subs not used: RGK Jack DUNCAN, 8 Beka DARTSMELIA, 22 Philip CANCAR,

Perth Glory: GK Cameron COOK, 2 John KOUTROUMBIS, 4 Luke BODNAR (19 Zach DUNCAN 46'), 5 Mark BEEVERS, 6 Aaron MCENEFF (37 Jacob MUIR 83'), 7 Ryan WILLIAMS, 14 Jack CLISBY (3 Jacob DOWSE 83'), 16 Keegan JELACIC, 22 Adam TAGGART, 28 Trent OSTLER (43 Adam ZIMARINO 65'), 29 Darryl LACHMAN - Subs not used: RGK Pierce CLARK, 36 Joseph FORDE – Attendance: 4,864 - Referee: Adam BAVCAR



Perth Glory have won the first ever ‘Long Distance Derby’ in New Zealand, and kept themselves in the mix for a finals spot, after a Cyera Hintzen first half strike secured a hard-fought 1-0 win over Wellington Phoenix in week 18 of the Liberty A-League at Sky Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Glory had to weather a great deal of pressure late to secure the three points, the win meaning Alex Epakis’ side move to within four points of fourth-placed Melbourne Victory, with a game in hand and he was impressed by the character his side showed to battle out the game and bring home the points.

“I thought we started off the blocks really quickly and in the first 15, 20 minutes, we looked really crisp with the ball and we got rewarded with a nice goal for that,” Epakis said post-match. “But they [Wellington] then took control of the game a little bit and played really well and credit to them for that. But ultimately, we showed that relentless desire to find a way even when we didn’t play well for 90 minutes and I think that’s the trait of a healthy team. We found a way to put our bodies on the line, stay cohesive and collected and grind out the result.”

Epakis went on to praise his match-winner as one of the pre-eminent performers in the Liberty A-League. “I say it quite often back in Perth: I believe she’s one of the benchmark nines (strikers) in the competition,” Epakis said. “Not just from a goalscoring capacity, but also from the work she (does) off the ball. Even until the 95th minute she’s back pressing players and helping out.”

Glory made two changes to the side that were beaten by Adelaide United last week, with Sarah Langman replacing Morgan Aquino in goal and Ella Mastrantonio replaced Sarah Cain in the middle of the park. It was Glory’s first ever Liberty A-League trip to New Zealand, and they were on the front foot early and were rewarded with the opener on ten minutes.

Neat build up play ended with Hana Lowry, who played Hintzen in on goal with a terrific pass, and the American striker finished with aplomb past Brianna Edwards and into the far corner. They went close to a second six minutes later, Lowry’s corner picked out Liz Anton, whose downward header bounced just over the top.

But the hosts steadied and moments later a surging run by Paige Satchell, ended with a shot from the edge of the box, which was helped on by Emma Rolston, the ball creeping under Langman, but the Glory custodian got back in time to safe on the line, before Lowry fired over the top after being found by Hintzen at the other end. Then in stoppage time Betsy Hassett had a sight of goal, but her shot was saved low by Langman, and at the break Glory held a narrow advantage.

Langman was at it again early in the second half, saving superbly to deny Marisa van der Meer’s snap shot at her near post. Moments later the lively Satchell sent a low shot into the side-netting, as the Phoenix searched for the equaliser. The hosts were dominating and from Michaela Fosters free kick 18 minutes from time, Hassett headed over the top when well placed, before substitute Ava Pritchard headed inches wide of the post.

The Glory were defending in numbers and four minutes from time, a cross from the right by substitute Milly Clegg caused problems, but Glory substitute Cain cleared the ball after a goalmouth scramble, Glory holding on to take home the points. “It’s probably one of the (results) that’s hurt the most,” Phoenix coach Natalie Lawrence said post-match. “There’s frustration, but there’s a sense of pride in the way we’re playing.”

Wellington Phoenix: GK Brianna EDWARDS, 3 Kate TAYLOR, 4 Mackenzie BARRY, 5 Marisa VAN DER MEER, 7 Chloe KNOTT, 8 Grace WISNEWSKI (10 Alyssa WHINHAM 82'), 11 Betsy HASSETT, 13 Paige SATCHELL (9 Ava PRITCHARD 76'), 14 Michaela ROBERTSON (17 Claudia CICCO 82'), 16 Emma ROLSTON (20 Milly CLEGG 60'), 18 Te Reremoana WALKER, 21 Michaela FOSTER - Subs not used: RGK Georgia CANDY

Perth Glory: GK Sarah LANGMAN, 3 Kim CARROLL, 4 Natasha RIGBY, 7 Liz ANTON, 8 Hana LOWRY (9 Demi KOULIZAKIS 79'), 12 Sofia SAKALIS (13 Sarah CAIN 76'), 14 Hannah BLAKE (23 Alana JANCEVSKI 90'), 15 Cyera HINTZEN, 18 Sadie LAWRENCE, 19 Izzy FOLETTA, 21 Ella MASTRANTONIO (17 Abbey GREEN 76') - Subs not used: RGK Morgan AQUINO - Attendance: 850 – Referee: Isabella Libri



The 2023 NPL-WA season preview is now updated. The team takes a look at the twelve clubs, and are joined by "The Insider", Murray Stevens, from "The Football Fix" radio show, our very own Brett Klucznik, and founder Jacob Aufdemkampe, in offering their thoughts on how season 2023 will pan out...



The 2023 NPL WA Men’s season kicks off this weekend, and it looks like being the closest competition for a number of seasons, with a number of teams in the mix for the title. In our week one ‘Match of the Round’ we head to Macedonia Park on Saturday evening, as Stirling Macedonia host newly-promoted Olympic Kingsway. (7.00pm)

It’s a return to top flight football for David Tough’s side, the last time was in 1999, and they have started life well by winning last week’s Night Series final. Stirling were promoted back to the Premier League in 2021, and finished a credible third in their inaugural season, and Ian Ferguson side will be in the mix again this season, so this should be great opening fixture. The last time these two clubs played at Macedonia Park in the Premier League was in round seven in 1999, when the then Stirling Lions, ran out 5-0 winners.

Stirling defender Luke Palmateer played a huge part in the clubs’ resurgence last season, and he believes they learnt a great deal, which will help them in 2023. “The overall attitude of the squad we had assembled for the 2022 season was that we were really trying to cement a position in the top four, although the team had only just come up from the state league,” the defender explained.

“We were well aware that Stirling Macedonia are well established as a top contender in Western Australia and that anything less than a top four position would not have been deemed acceptable. Having pushed so far to have almost won the title, which may have surprised a fair few from the outside, and which might have been seen as a successful season, considering our original outlook being the top four. However, with being so close, you can't help but feel somewhat disappointed that we did not get over the line and clinch the title.”

Palmateer, who played NPL football at ECU Joondalup, and also played a number of seasons at Olympic and he said his former team will be on a high after winning the Night Series last week, and knows it will be a tight contest, but one they are looking forward too. “Kingsway are a club I know very well having played four seasons there in their ambitions of achieving status in the NPL. The club is fantastically well run and driven by individuals who hold a very high standard of achievement,” he said.

“To me it is no surprise they competed well during the entirety of the night series due to the playing style and squad assembled under Toughy. Saturday’s game should be hotly contested, games usually played under the lights have a different intensity than those kicking off at 3pm. With the added expectation between the local derby, I am sure it is going to prove a great spectacle for all those that come down to Macedonia Park to watch it.”

Last weekend Olympic skipper Shane Cassidy lifted the first Premier League silverware for the club in 43 years, the last was when John Ward’s side won the Soccer Federation of Western Australia, Premier League, edging out Spearwood Dalmatinac on goal difference. Cassidy, who like his Stirling counterpart, played for ECU Joondalup, helped the club to the Division One title, and he believes they are getting stronger, and last week’s Night Series Final success showed they are heading in the right direction, but he is well aware they have a lot of improvement in them. “It was great to add some silverware so early in the season, it will give us great confidence going into the league, and I thought the game itself was a good show for the fans,” he said.

“I thought first half we played well but just couldn’t find the finishing touch, but I was extremely happy with the reaction we had to going behind so early, I thought we stuck to our style of play and continued pressing for the equaliser which we deservedly got. The boys took there penalties well, apart from myself, so I owe them one for giving me a dig out. Happy for the management team with the work that they do behind the scenes to get us ready for each opponent every week, also the committee since I walked through the door last year it has been a great experience. So, it’s great to repay the club with some silverware to show that the hard work they have put in off the field is starting to pay off on it as well.”

The defender said everyone at the club can’t wait to get the season going, and he will come up against his former club, after playing two seasons at Macedonia Park. He said they were impressive in their first season in the NPL, and he said Olympic are looking to do the same this season, so it should be a great game. “It is a great game to start the season off with against Stirling, there should be a massive crowd there also which will make it more exciting,” Cassidy explained. “They had a great year last year after promotion to the NPL, pushing for the league right up until the last game of the season, it just goes to show that the teams coming up are well able to hold their own and give it a right go, which we will be planning to do this Saturday. We know it won’t be easy against a good Stirling side, but we will be going there to give it our all and hopefully leave with three points.”

In the other first round games, new Cockburn City coach Steven McDonald takes his side to Alfred Skeet Reserve to take on Armadale in the local derby. (All games kick off at 3.00pm, unless otherwise stated) Perth RedStar are also on the road, when they make the trip to Dorrien Gardens to meet Perth SC, Balcatta Etna welcome Perth Glory to Grindleford Reserve, while last season’s Champions Floreat Athena, begin their defence when they host Inglewood United at E&D Litis Stadium on Saturday evening. (5.00pm)

The round begins on Friday evening, when Bayswater City host Sorrento at Frank Drago Reserve. (7.00pm) Both sides failed to reach the knockout stage of the Night Series, but both will look to start the season on a high. It will be Sorrento new Coach Steven McGarry first game in charge of the Gulls, and the former Perth Glory assistant coach is looking forward to it. “I think everyone at the club is looking forward to the season ahead and it doesn’t come any bigger than Bayswater away, and hopefully with the game been the stand-alone season opener there will be a decent crowd which I’m sure all players enjoy playing in front of,” he explained

“Gareth (Naven) has assembled a really good squad over the last couple of years at Bayswater, so it’s going to be a tough start, but it’s not something that’s out of our reach to go and get a result. I’ve only been in a short spell so it’s been important to get straight to work on the training ground and the players have responded very well to all the info, there effort and focus so far has been first class.”



It’s round three of the Australia Cup (WA) this weekend, with 21 ties all over the state, and with the State league clubs entering, it has given us some intriguing games, and our ‘Match of the Round’ is a ‘David v Goliath’ tie, when we head to the Cracovia Sporting Club in Bennett Springs, where State League Division One club Murdoch University Melville take on the Belt-Up Amateur Division Two club Cracovia SC on Sunday afternoon. (All games kick off at 3.00pm, unless otherwise Stated)

Cracovia had to fight hard to beat Chipolopolo in the last round, overcoming them 5-2, and coach John Sabetta said it was a good win as their pre-season had only just got going. “Cracovia is preparing for the season ahead, and we have many new players to the team in 2023 so we have been trailing new players in the first team,” he explained.

“We have been hit hard by injuries preseason and will be fielding a young team to give the younger players a chance opportunity to learn from the game.” Sabetta said Sunday is a huge occasion for the club, and he’s expecting a big crowd to be on hand. “They (MUMFC) have already had some strong results this season,” he said. “So, the younger Cracovia players will be excited to learn from the Murdoch players this weekend.”

Another Amateur club who will face State League opposition is Wembley Downs, the Premier Division side travel to Princess Road Reserve on Saturday to take on State League Division Two club Balga. (2.30pm) Wembley’s second round game against Dunsborough was forfeited, and coach Andrew Whalley said they head into this one with nothing to lose and everything to gain. “Really looking forward to the tie this weekend even though we come in as major underdogs after defeat to Jags and a narrow win over North Perth,” he said.

“It’s a great test for the boys and we just hope we do ourselves and our club proud. We know Balga have quality across the park and it will hopefully be a good open game. We last played Balga back when they were Amateurs and jumped to state Division Two the same year, so it will be nice to play them again with what is usually a great beer selection at Princess Reserve.”

Kwinana United are another Amateur Premier Division club to travel to State League opposition, when they travel to Grandis Park to meet Carramar Shamrock Rovers. United’s last round game against Geographe Bay was also forfeited, and coach Mark Purvis said they are looking forward to testing themselves against the Division Two club. “A chance to test ourselves against state league opposition is something we are looking forward too,” he said. “We will be looking to go there and give a good account of ourselves, and if we have the right attitude about us, then I’m sure we will.”

There is a number of all State League ties, with Kingsley Westside taking on Morley Windmills at Wotton Reserve (2.30pm), Canning City travelling to Nash Field to meet Western Knights, Joondalup United host Mandurah City at Forrest Park, Wanneroo City welcome Joondalup City to Wanneroo Reserve, UWA Nedlands meet Fremantle City at Dorrien Gardens, Quinns take on Subiaco at Riverlinks Park, while Dianella White Eagles welcome Gwelup Croatia to Dianella Reserve on Saturday evening. (8.00pm)

The final all State League game is at the Swan Italian Club, Francis Street, on Saturday, when the State League Cup winners from 2003 and 2004, Swan United welcome Forrestfield United. Forrestfield new coach Eric Williams will return to Swan, after coaching at the club for a number of seasons, and he will be looking for an improved performance from his side after they failed to make the knockout stage of the Night Series.

Swan missed out on goal difference, but coach Niall Hughes said they go into the tie in good form after a 5-2 win against MUMFC last week. “Colin and I were both really happy with the performance and the scoreline last weekend, especially after a long preseason, where we’ve been trying to get across how we want to play football, the boys seemed to have taken it all on board and I think Saturday was the first time we did it for the full 90 minutes, so that was the most pleasing part,” he explained.

“This weekend against Forrestfield will be another tough game and one that I think carries a little bit extra given several players and coaches have represented both clubs. We have seen a bit of them in preseason and know they have a lot of young exciting players, mixed in with some experience. Add to that a head coach in Eric Williams who has achieved an awful lot in coaching, including his time with Swan. That being said, come 3pm ourselves and the players will be giving everything to make sure we reward all the Swan fans we expect to see down at the Italian Club, with a good performance and our name in the next round draw.”

The other games with lower opposition looking to cause an upset against State League sides start on Saturday when newly promoted Maddington/Kalamunda White City welcomes North Perth United to Maida Vale Reserve, Peel United make the trip to Edinburgh Oval to take on Curtin University, Rockingham City host Noranda City at Lark Hill, while Football Margret River make the long trip to Ashfield Reserve to take on Ashfield, then on Sunday Ballajura AFC head to Walter Padbury Reserve to meet Gosnells City. (12.00pm)

The final ties on Sunday, sees Perth AFC take on Eaton Daranup at Len Packham Reserve, Hamersley Rovers meet South Perth United at Challenger Reserve, Woodvale and North Beach meet at Timberlane Park, Perth Royals welcome Jaguar to JA Lee Reserve, while the inform Port Kennedy make the trip to Churchill Park to take on Busselton City.



The 2023 NPL Womens Night Series Final will see Group A winners Perth RedStar, take on Group B winners Perth SC at E&D Litis Stadium on Sunday evening (7.15pm), and it will be live streamed by Football West. Before the final Fremantle City will meet the Hyundai NTC side in the third-place play-off (5.00pm).

The RedStar’s will be looking for back-to-back Night Series titles, after beating Balcatta Etna 4-2 after extra time in last season’s final. They found themselves two-goals down early, with Kimberley McCartney and an own goal from Andreia Teixeira putting Balcatta in control. But a goal just before half time from Shawn Billam put life back into the game, and Quyen Doan goal after half time sent it to extra time, where Laura Walsh and Gold Medal Winner, Carla Bennett, sealed the win.

RedStar were made to work hard last week against Fremantle in the semi-final, eventually running out 2-1 winners, and Sarah Carroll said it was a game of two-halves. “Fremantle are always a tough game, they’re a very physical and competitive side, but I thought we were good in the first half and were very much in control,” she explained. “Second half we probably allowed them back into the game a little bit, they built a bit of momentum, got their goal, and it opened up the game, but we have the experience in our group to see out games and we were able to do that.”

Carroll said Sunday final will be another tough game against a good Perth side, but they head into the game full confidence. “I think it’s set to be a very competitive game, as they are always against Perth,” she said. “We’ve had some close encounters with Perth in the past, and they’ve recruited well in the off season, so we expect another tough game and we’re looking forward to it.”

Perth needed penalties to beat the NTC in the Semi-Final last weekend, but the Azzurri held their nerve in the shootout to seal their place in the final, and striker Jaime Duncanson said it was a real battle. “Very happy to come away with the semi-final win against NTC, and It’s always a hard-fought battle against them, as I think we play similar styles of football so it’s a good match up,” she said. “We fought hard and kept pushing throughout the whole game, and the girls did amazingly well to stay unsettled throughout the penalties.”

Duncanson said they have pushed the RedStar’s in the past, and they go into the final looking to do that again. “We are confident, we know what we are capable of, and we are starting to reap the rewards of what Pete (Rakic) has implemented over the last year and a half,” she said. “RedStar are a strong side, and we came close last year, but now we have that mentality and confidence we are ready to go all in.”



Perth Glory will look to build on last week’s dramatic 1-0 win against Western Sydney Wanders, when they take on Newcastle Jets in week 21 of the Isuzu Ute A-League clash at McDonald Jones Stadium on Saturday afternoon. (2pm WST) Aaron McEneff’s stoppage time winner has given the squad a huge boost, and ended their six-game run without a win, but Head Coach Ruben Zadkovich is looking for more consistency from his side, with finals football still on his, and the clubs agender.

Zadkovich, who played nearly 100 games for the Jets, said the spirit his side showed, and the character of all his player in the Wanderers victory was something he want to see for the rest of the season, as they chase a spot in the top six. “It’s a tight competition all round and I think a lot of teams have struggled to get the consistency in results,” he said. “We’ve had some good performances consistently, but haven’t got results from those performances and I think there are a few teams who have been like that… and Newcastle are one.

“With the short number of games left, it’s about taking each game on its merits and getting the maximum. For us, we want to go to Newcastle and get three points. We believe we can, we’ve proven that we’re good enough and we just have to be consistent. It was a fantastic atmosphere being at home [on Friday] and our fans were fantastic.

“They really helped us in that match and I thought the players’ efforts really reflected the pride and the belief that they have in what we’re doing. It was backs-to-the-wall stuff; it was about individual battles and individual efforts and being strong collectively and I’m really proud of that performance. But we do have to move on quickly and we’re away from home against Newcastle who are a decent side and they can be very dangerous at times, so we’re going to have to be at our best to go away and get a result.”

The last visit to the McDonald Jones Stadium in round two this season, ended in defeat for the Glory. A certain Jordan Elsey, who is suspended for Saturday’s clash, opened the scoring for the hosts, but Aaron McEneff levelled, with his first goal for the club. It looked like that would seal a point for Glory, but deep into stoppage time Beka Mikeltadze won it for the Jets.

The Jets are also in the mix for finals football, currently one point and two places above Glory, but have slipped in recent weeks, having lost their last three games. Zadkovich said they will be up for it on Saturday, and his side need to be at their best, if they are to keep in touch with the sides above them. “There’s that congestion in the ladder and its very tight and we certainly don’t underestimate Newcastle, especially in Newcastle,” he explained.

“It’s not an easy place to go and the way they play, they try and get their crowd behind them and they do a good job of that. We expect a difficult match, but on the flipside, we know what we’re playing for and what we’re capable of. We proved again on the weekend just how good we can be when we put it together. I’m excited for the game against Newcastle and am looking forward to taking a squad there and getting a result. The belief and the confidence that the boys got from that win at the weekend, we’re going to carry that into this weekend and I’m looking forward to it.”

Three points are massive in this one, and could be season defying. The coach will be missing Elsey, who was sent off after only two minutes last week, and the club were considering appealing the decision, but he will miss the trip. In better news, skipper Mustafa Amini is set to return to the squad, after serving his one-match ban. While Antonee Burke-Gilroy, and Joseph Forde, who has just returned from Young Socceroos duty, have been added to the traveling party. For Newcastle, Jaushua Sotirio, Reno Piscopo and Archie Goodwin will miss the game through injury, while they have a number of ex-Glory players in their squad, Jack Duncan, Dane Ingham, Brandon O’Neill, Daniel Stynes and Callum Timmins will be hoping to get one over their former club.

Newcastle Jets squad: GK Jack DUNCAN, GK Michael WEIER, 2 Dane INGHAM, 3 Jason HOFFMAN, 4 Manabu SAITO 5 Matthew JURMAN, 6 Brandon O’NEILL, 7 Trent BUHAGIAR, 8 Beka DARTSMELIA, 9 Beka MIKELTADZE, 10 Reno PISCOPO, 14 Mohamed AL-TAAY, 17 Kosta GROZOS, 18 Daniel STYNES, 19 Callum TIMMINS, 22 Philip CANCAR, 25 Carl JENKINSON, 32 Angus THURGATE, 33 Mark NATTA. 39 Thomas AQUILINA - Ins: PISCOPO - Outs: 11 Jaushua SOTIRIO (calf), 26 Archie GOODWIN (groin), 30 Noah JAMES (unavailable)

Perth Glory squad: GK Cameron COOK, GK Pierce CLARK, 2 John KOUTROUMBIS, 3 Jacob DOWSE, 4 Luke BODNAR, 5 Mark BEEVERS, 6 Aaron MCENEFF, 7 Ryan WILLIAMS, 8 Mustafa AMINI, 14 Jack CLISBY, 16 Keegan JELACIC, 18 David WILLIAMS, 19 Zach DUNCAN, 21 Antonee BURKE-GILROY, 22 Adam TAGGART, 28 Trent OSTLER, 29 Darryl LACHMAN, 36 Joseph FORDE, 37 Jacob MUIR, 43 Adam ZIMARINO - Ins: AMINI, BURKE-GILROY, FORDE - Outs: 15 Jordan ELSEY (Suspended)



Perth Glory will head over the ditch for their first Liberty A-League game against Wellington Phoenix, on New Zealand soil, when they meet in the ‘Long Distance Derby’ in the round 18 clash at the Sky Stadium on Saturday afternoon. (12pm WST) Head Coach Alex Epakis will look for his side to bounce back from last week’s narrow loss against Adelaide United, which left them seven points adrift of the play-off spot. But they come up against a side who will be on high after beating top of the table Sydney FC last time out.

Epakis is well aware of the threat posed by the Phoenix, but he is backing his players to bounce back from the loss in Adelaide. “We’re going into the unknown as a coaching group as we haven’t had this experience of playing Wellington away and we’re managing that as a group,” he said. “But we’re a professional outfit and this is an opportunity and an experience that we’re looking forward to.

“Credit to Wellington, they’ve established themselves as a competitive team, despite being a new team with a really young squad as well. I certainly admire from a distance what the coaching team is doing over there, so we have to respect exactly where they’re at. They had a great result and performance against Sydney last week, so it’s certainly going to be a challenge. But we’re not in a position to slip up, so we need to go there and win.”

Last weekend’s shock defeat by Adelaide, surprised many, and Epakis explained there were some frank discussions among the players and staff after the 1-2 defeat. “It was disappointing, especially as we’ve been tracking so well in recent weeks,” he said. “Our performances were really and strong and we had a really strong vibe about what we were doing. But the reality was that the last performance wasn’t good enough.

“We acknowledge that and accept that, but I’m very proud of the group because we’ve had a pretty deep conversation collectively about what’s been working and what we need to do better and it takes a strong team sometimes to put those things out on the table.

“We’ve trained really well this week and I’m looking forward to the trip to Wellington and the challenges that poses. We’re just making sure we’re taking training day by day and the games week by week. We just can’t look too far ahead and the reality is we need things to go our way as well [elsewhere] from a results perspective, so let’s just put all our energy and attention into what we can control.”

Glory welcome back Tijan McKenna from international duty, while Isabella Wallhead is also added to the squad. Glory have met the Phoenix three times, since the New Zealand side entered the competition and have won all three. The last was in round ten this season, when goals from Cyera Hintzen and Susan Phonsongkham gave them a 2-0 win at Macedonia Park, and they need a win on this one if they are to keep their finals hopes alive,

Wellington Phoenix squad: GK Brianna EDWARDS, GK Georgia CANDY, 2 Saskia VOSPER, 3 Kate TAYLOR, 4 Mackenzie BARRY, 5 Marisa VAN DER MEER, 7 Chloe KNOTT, 8 Grace WISNEWSKI, 9 Ava PRITCHARD, 10 Alyssa WHINHAM, 11 Betsy HASSETT, 13 Paige SATCHELL, 14 Michaela ROBERTSON, 15 Zoe MCMEEKEN, 16 Emma ROLSTON, 17 Claudia CICCO, 18 Te Reremoana WALKER, 19 Charlotte LANCASTER, 20 Milly CLEGG, 21 Michaela FOSTER - Ins: CICCO (returning from international duty) - Outs: GK Corina BROWN (end of short-term contract) - Unavailable: GK Lily ALFELD (injured), 6 Isabel GOMEZ (injured)

Perth Glory Squad: GK Morgan AQUINO, GK Sarah LANGMAN, 3 Kim CARROLL, 4 Natasha RIGBY, 6 Tijan MCKENNA, 7 Liz ANTON, 8 Hana LOWRY, 9 Demi KOULIZAKIS, 12 Sofia SAKALIS, 13 Sarah CAIN, 14 Hannah BLAKE, 15 Cyera HINTZEN, 16 Isabella WALLHEAD, 17 Abbey GREEN, 18 Sadie LAWRENCE, 19 Izzy FOLETTA, 21 Ella MASTRANTONIO, 23 Alana JANCEVSKI - Ins: MCKENNA, WALLHEAD - Unavailable: 10 Susan PHONSONGKHAM (injured), 11 Rylee BAISDEN (injured), 24 Milan HAMMOND (injured)



Australia Under-23 coach Tony Vidmar has called up Jahce Novello for this month’s national team training camp in Italy. 18-year old Novello, who plays for Serie B side Cosenza Calcio, replaces Central Coast Mariners’ Jacob Farrell, who has withdrawn due to illness.

Originally from Bunbury, Novello started his footballing journey at Dynamos before moving to National Premier Leagues club Armadale which was followed by a spell with South West Phoenix. He will be joined in camp by fellow West Australian Jacob Italiano, who is with German club Borussia Monchengladbach II.

“It’s unfortunate for us that Jacob is unable to attend,” Vidmar said. “Coming into the squad for this camp is Jahce Novello, a gifted player who is currently playing in Italy and someone that’s been on our radar, so this is a good opportunity for us to take a closer look at him.”

The squad of 24-players will assemble next week at the Australian Institute of Sport European Training Centre located in Gavirate, Varese, for a 9-day training camp. The Olyroos will play friendies against the Switzerland Under-20 national team (24 March) and Serie B outfit Como 1907 (27 March).



Sam Kerr has been named the FA Women's Super League Player of the Year for the second year running at the London Football Awards. The awards are designed to celebrate the best of London football, with players eligible if they are from the 16 men's and women's teams that play in the British capital. Last month Kerr missed out on the three-person shortlist for FIFA's most prestigious individual award, the FIFA Best award, for the first time since 2020.

But the Australian star has had another excellent season for Chelsea, and on Sunday, the Matildas striker scored a brilliant winner for the Blues as they beat title rivals Manchester United 1-0 to go to the top of the Women's Super League by two points with a game in hand, and they have eight games to play in the 22-game season.

The goal was Kerr's seventh in 14 games in the WSL, and her 22nd in all competitions this season, and overall, Kerr has scored 83 goals in 103 appearances for Chelsea. The former Perth Glory striker, has surpassed 100 appearances for the Blues, and she said it is an honour to win the FA Women’s Super League Player of the Year award for the second year running.

“It feels amazing,” Kerr said. “It has been a big year for women’s football so it is an amazing honour to win it, especially in a year where in England the Lionesses have done so well and women’s football has been on a big trajectory. Chelsea has given to me as much I have given to them, and it has been a crazy journey since I have been here. From the moment I signed it felt like different from anything I have ever experienced and since I have been here, I have loved it and it has been a great journey.”

If you have any additional information on Western Australian soccer that we have left out, or if you would like to get in contact, email Jacob at

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