Inglewood United celebrate their opening goal by Adam Falcone in the 2-0 win against ECU Joondalup

Welcome to the unofficial, independent Western Australian Football (Soccer) Website. Here you will find all the latest football news from Western Australia, current tables for the state's top four Leagues, archived tables and results dating back to 1950, the Western Australian Club Directory which includes honour lists and divisional movements for each club and much, much more.

Google Custom Search

12.7.2020

BELT UP AMATEUR LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION - ROUND FOUR REVIEW

We are in round four of the Belt-Up Sunday Amateur Division and North Perth United have moved level with Joondalup United at the top of the table after a 3-0 win against Queens Park at Coker Park in our ‘Match of the Round. It was a tight first half but in the shadows of the break North Perth found the opener, with Alpha Sheriff on target. Sheriff added his second to double North Perth’s lead on the hour, and Dalitso Mwale made the points safe adding a third in stoppage time. “Yes, obviously very pleased to come away with the points, as an away game at Queens Park has always been a tricky fixture,” North Perth Head Coach Alex Carter said. “We probably weren’t at our fluent best but that’s how football is. I thought as a collective we defended really well and showed a great energy and intensity when needed. We addressed an issue at half time of where it was breaking down going forward. We improved on that in the second half and will again continue to work at training on this.”

Joondalup United dropped points for the first time this season but they did come back from two goals down to draw 4-4 with Kwinana United at Kelly Park. It was the host who opened the scoring on 15 minutes, Neil Beveridge cutting in from the left and finishing from the edge of the box. It was 2-0 to Kwinana on 20 minutes, Lee Bates finding room in the penalty area after a neat turn, and he finished low past Luke Green. The visitors reduced the deficit two minutes later, a pinpoint cross from Tony Taylor was headed home by Adam Buckley. Joondalup levelled on the half hour, Adam Giannasi found Buckley with a through ball and the striker fired the ball low into the net. But on the stroke of half time the home side regained their two-goal lead, Jake Daley pinching the ball off a Joondalup defender before finishing well.

After the break Kwinana made it 4-2, a mix up at the back let in Daley, and he scored his second of the day. Both sides had great chances to find the net again as Kwinana blazed over in front of an open goal and Joel Ledsham headed wide from six yards for the visitors. Joondalup weren’t finished and they added a third on the hour, an opportunistic 25-meter lob from Buckley looped over the goalkeeper, to reduce the arrears and complete his hat-trick. Joondalup keeper Green produced a couple of superb saves to keep his side in the contest, and with five minutes to go the scores were level again. Mark Walsh was fouled just outside the box and Buckley stepped up to curl the resulting free kick into the top corner. There were chances at either end late on but the points were shared at the final whistle. Kwinana Head Coach Mark Purvis said it was a great game. “Overall a really good game of football and a great advert for the league,” he said. “However, after being 4-2 up, I would have loved to hang on for the win, but it wasn’t to be.”

Joondalup Head Coach Neil Sherwin said his side showed great character to fight back to earn a point. "We were far from our best today, and the four goals we conceded could have been prevented, but Mark Purvis has done a great job at Kwinana and they made things very difficult for us from the first whistle but we need to defend better in certain situations,” he explained. "Character wise, I didn't doubt that we could get something from the game, even at two goals down. We have some superb players who can pull something out of nothing, and Adam Buckley was the man to do it this week. His four goals were all different and he only needs half a chance to find the net. We're happy to be unbeaten after four rounds, and we've had to work hard for our points so far. I don't expect that to change any time soon given the quality in this league."

Maddington White City started the round on Saturday evening with a bang at WML Stadium in Bunbury, coming home with a 6-2 win against South West Phoenix. It wasn’t a great start for the home side, who had keeper Jamie Oakey sent off after only seven minutes for bringing down Sammy Ramos who was clean through on goal. Then on 15 minutes City hit the front with Craig Kamocha scoring an own goal. The ten men hit back and levelled midway through the half, with Zachary van Oosten scoring from the penalty spot, after a foul by Nico Serrano. But three minutes later City regained the lead, Ramos outrunning the last defender and slotting from close range past the substitute keeper. Maddington made it 3-1 just before the break, Jose Zuniga scoring after being found by Ramos.

After half time Maddington took control of the game and Zuniga made it 4-1 after being fed through by David Sarria. Matthew Pastega pulled one back for the home side on the hour, but they were then reduced to nine-men when Blair Pastega was sent off. City player coach Cesar Gonzalez made it 5-2 after 76 minutes following a pass from Tatenda Ticharwa, and Maddington scored its final goal at the 80 minutes after a tired home side left Nofal Aroca open in the box to slot home from the six-yard box. “All in all, we were very pleased to come away from Bunbury with two wins,” Gonzalez said. “The first team squad responded perfectly after a difficult loss in our previous game against UWA-Nedlands. We now look forward to the visit of Quinn's, where hopefully we can pick up another three points and put some pressure on the teams above us on the ladder.”

Leeming Strikers moved to third after a 3-1 win against UWA Nedlands at John Connell Reserve. The home side were ahead eight minutes before half time, when a ball played over the top wasn’t dealt with by the UWA keeper, and Kieran Witt tapped in from 10 metres. Leeming doubled their lead on 70 minutes, good pressure from Mike Maratea caused the error and he found Ben Greaves running into the box and he slotted it past the oncoming keeper. UWA pulled one back six minutes from time with Olsen scoring a long-range free kick, but the points were made safe for the home side in the final minute. Good work down the wing from Igor Sheftan, picked out Ben Greaves, who dribbled into the box and finish into the bottom corner.

“We had to make six forced changes from the Kwinana game and the first half we just couldn't keep up with UWA's energy and effort, we couldn't find any rhythm to our play and were very lucky to find ourselves one up at half time mainly due to a keeper mistake,” Leeming player coach David Palin said. “We asked for more during the break in terms of first and second ball efforts and after an early scare in the second half, the boys responded well, and got a deserved second. In the end the result was fair but we know we have to be a lot better in coming weeks if we're going to keep up with the teams currently top.”

Jaguar have made it back to back wins after a 6-3 win against Quinn’s at Gumblossom Park. The visitors raced to a three goal. First Malek Domköc pounced on a defensive mistake after only three minutes, and three minutes later Paul Sopp raced forward and set up Conor O’Driscoll to score. Jags had another opportunity to add to their lead when Gojam Nyuon was brought down in the penalty area, but Sopp missed the resulting penalty. But on 24 minutes they did make it 3-0, Domköc firing home from 25 meters. Quinns pulled one back on the half hour, with Ryan McCready on target, and they added a second four minutes from the break through Liam Hunt. After the break Jags push forward and Nyuon released Domköc who finished well for his hat-trick. Quinns keeper was then sent off and Jags took control with Nyuon making it 5-2 Jags. David Long pulled another back for Quinns, but Jaguar added a sixth, Conor O'Driscoll added his second to give them a comprehensive win.

In the final game Wembley Downs bounced back from defeat at Joondalup last week to secure a 3-1 win against the unbeaten Hamersley Rovers at Butlers Reserve. The hosts took the lead five minutes into the second half, with Matt Devereux at the far post bundling the ball over the line from a corner. But Rovers hit back and Cosimo Figliomeni levelled on 63 minutes. But two minutes later Wembley regained their lead, Devereux adding his second racing clear one-on-one with the keeper to score. The points were wrapped up 11 minutes from time with Jurai Galba firing home a free kick from the edge of the penalty area. “It was a very competitive game, and to be fair Hamersley were unlucky not to go in at half time with the lead, even though both teams missed some good chances,” Wembley Head Coach Mike Ford explained. “They (Hamersley) certainly, dominated the first half, but second half we were a different team and really took the game to Hamersley and took our chances - given we had another changed team the lads really dug deep to record a great win against a very talented Hamersley side.”

11.7.2020

ATHENA DOWN CHAMPIONS

Floreat Athena showed again they are the ones to beat for the NPLWA title after 2-0 win against Champions Perth SC in our 'Match of the Round' at Dorrien Gardens. They were given a helping hand in this one when Perth’s Jayden Gorman was sent off in the first half. But second half goals from Phil Arnold and Noah Shamaki secured the three points and took Ante Kovacevic’s side to the top of the table.

“We expected an intense game against Perth and that is the way it started,” Kovacevic explained. “It was a bit of an arm wrestle until young Gorman got sent off. Often playing against 10 men the intensity can drop off, but credit to our boys as we didn’t ease up and we felt it was only a matter of time until we broke the deadlock. It’s always pleasing to beat the reigning champions.”

It was an even start to the game, with both sides creating chances, but neither could convert. The game took a huge twist on the half hour when Gorman was sent off by referee Josh Mannella after a tackle on Andrew Palmer. The visitors took advantage of their numerical advantage after the break and eight minutes in they hit the front.

Liam Murray was brought down on the left and Dean Evans free kick wasn’t dealt with and Arnold headed the ball home from close-range. Floreat wrapped up the points eight minutes later with a second goal. Evans found Shamaki on the edge of the penalty and he out-muscled his marker before driving home from 12 meters. “It was a big win for us,” Floreat striker Shamaki said. “We had to be patient with and without the ball and wait for the right moment to attack, which we did and we took our chances when they came.”

Perth SC: GK Ryan MONTGOMERY, 2 Alex SILLA (16 Keiron COLWELL 46’), 3 Jordon DE LEO, 4 Thomas SOUTHGATE, 7 Alek JOVIC (14 Jawad REZAI 90’), 10 Michael DOMFEH, 12 Jackson MORGAN (13 Leigh MORGAN 78’), 15 Sasa NJEGIC, 19 Bojan RADINOVIC, 20 Jayden GORMAN, 22 Yagoub MUSTAFA – Subs not used: RGK Jackson LEE, 12 Daniel MACKENZIE – Red Cards: Gorman 29’

Floreat Athena: GK Jason SALDARIS, 5 Nelson TSHONGO (13 George FESTA 73’), 6 Jesse FULLER, 9 Noah SHAMAKI (32 Robert HARDING 79’), 10 Nick AMBROGIO (14 Ludovic BOI 70’), 11 Denis GALAN, 15 Chris SALDARIS, 17 Dean EVANS, 18 Phil ARNOLD, 19 Liam MURRAY, 20 Andrew PALMER – Subs not used: RGK Jordan BARBAS, 4 Ben STEELE – Referee: John Mannella

11.7.2020

ARMADALE EDGE OUT BALCATTA

Armadale bounced back from last week’s defeat at Floreat with a hard fought 2-1 win against Balcatta at Alfred Skeet Reserve. The Reds made the perfect start to the game with Josh Cortes scoring after only seven minutes. The visitors were back in the game on 71 minutes with substitute Michael Zimarino scoring, but seven minutes later Armadale’s Spanish striker Angel Andres secured all three points for John O’Reilly’s side. “Balcatta were a well organised defensive team and it was hard to break them down,” O’Reilly explained. “But the lads showed patience and perseverance, and it paid off and, in the end, we got the goal to seal the deserved three points.”

The hosts started well and went close on six minutes, Roberto Soares sent Josh Cortes in on goal, his shot was half blocked by keeper Riley Stevenson, and Adam Tong cleared the danger. But sixty seconds later the home side took the lead. Charlie Kenna’s cross was dropped by Stevenson, and Cortes punished him sweeping the ball home. Balcatta were level on 71 minutes. A ball into the box from skipper Calum O’Connell caught the Armadale defence ball watching and substitute Michael Zimarino, who had only been on the pitch for three minutes, slid the ball past the on-coming Cyril Sharrock to level.

But they were only level for seven minutes, with the home side winning it. Friday Zico’s corner picked out Andres, who lost his marker at the near post to head home and seal the three points. “It was obviously important for us to bounce back after the disappointing result at Floreat,” Armadale midfielder Dannie Richman said. “To be fair neither team were at their best, but we managed to battle to a win on the back of a good solid / disciplined team shape/defence, and with Angel up top you are always confident of scoring. We have a lot of new players so will take a few games for us to gel but we could surprise a few teams this year.”

Armadale: GK Cyril SHARROCK, 3 Harry QUIGLEY, 4 Nathan COSTELLO, 7 Josh CORTES (5 Ali NAZARY 78’), 8 Brian PATTERSON, 9 Angel ANDRES, 10 Roberto SOARES (17 Isaac KOOMSON 65’) (14 Sebastian STENQVIST 87’), 12 Dannie RICHMAN (11 Chad NILSON 87’), 13 Blake ADAMS, 15 Charlie KENNA, 23 Friday ZICO – Subs not used: RGK Sam HUTCHINGS

Balcatta: GK Riley STEPHENSON, 2 Joseph MARINO, 4 Calum O’CONNELL, 6 Alex CASTIELO, 8 Jack LEECH, 9 Chris BREEN (7 Callum STOCKS 79’), 10 Jon CORNESS, 13 Anthony TOPINI (11 Michael ZIMARINO 68’), 14 Adam TONG, 16 Adam ZIMARINO, 17 Henry DURR - Subs not used: RGK Riccardo MAZZOLENI, 12 Dylan LEONARD, 15 Jackson DONGRAY – Referee: Joshua Nixon

11.7.2020

INGLEWOOD BEAT TEN-MAN ECU JOONDALUP

Inglewood United remain unbeaten this season after a hard fought 2-1 win against a ten-man ECU Joondalup at Perth Plasterboard Centre Stadium. Andres Oliveira’s side made the perfect start with Adam Falcone on target early. But deep into stoppage time former Wellington Phoenix defender Ryan Lowry levelled for Kenny Lowe’s side. The turning point in the game came on 54 minutes when ECU keeper Johnny Perkins was sent off, and the hosts won it six minutes later with Steve Sokol scoring from the spot, even with the sending off of midfielder Lal Cung late in the game.

“It was a tough game under unusual circumstances, with some injuries forcing us to change our tactics and formation slightly. We only had the week leading up to prepare for that, but we came into the game focused and knowing exactly what to do,” Inglewood winger Steve Sokol said. “I thought we kept our shape well and stuck to the tactics, which paid off as we made it difficult for ecu to play their game, and ultimately got the win. We didn't play as well as we know we can, but the team worked really hard and we're all happy to get the three points.”

The home side hit the front after only nine minutes, Shane Cassidy was caught in possession in the middle of the park and Sokol raced down the right before squaring the ball to Falcone, who scored from six meters. ECU looked for the equaliser and Danny Hodgson’s shot was well saved by Alex Dunn. Then in the fifth minute of first half stoppage time the Jacks levelled. Tommy Amphlett’s corner found Lowry, who lost his marker to score from close-range, to send the sides into the break all-square.

ECU opened the second half well and Callum Timmins’ long-range drive was well saved by Dunn, before Amphlett’s shot clipped the top of the crossbar. Moments later Hodgson’s shot on the turn hit the post, but on 56 minutes a long ball from Falcone sent Sokol in on goal, Perkins came out his box to clear, but caught the striker, and the referee had no other choice but to send the Jacks custodian off.

With no keeper on the bench Bayley Brown-Montgomery went into goal, and seven minutes later he was involved in the home sides winner. Sokol again, burst into the box, the stand-in keeper forced him wide, but brought him down and the referee pointed to the spot. Sokol picked himself up to score to give the home side the lead. Cung was shown a second yellow card late but the host held out to secure the three points.

“I was pleased with the win against a good side like Joondalup. It wasnt our best performance but we have improved from the week before against Gwelup,” Inglewood Head Coach Andres Oliveira said. “We are taking this season game by game and give opportunities to youth players. So there is always going to be room for improvement each week and I'm happy to see the players get better as a team.”

Inglewood United: GK Alex DUNN, 2 Alex ISHIDA-LIVINGS, 4 Scott BLACKMORE, 5 Thiak KUEL, 6 Adam FALCONE (8 Jason BARRERA 60’), 10 Anthony BAFOBUSHA, 12 Brendan ITALIANO, 14 Steve SOKOL, 16 Jamie MURPHY, 17 Mark BARNETT, 19 Brodie LANGAN (7 Lal CUNG 60’) – Subs not used: RGK Josiah GODFREY, 9 Toby ROBINSON, 11 Adrian MANNO – Red Cards: Cung 87’

ECU Joondalup: GK Johnny PERKINS, 3 Ross MILLARD (8 Tom HOUGH 31’) (6 Matthew DENCH 87’), 4 Riley WARLAND, 5 Ryan LOWRY, 7 Danny HODGSON, 10 Andy HIGGINS, 11 Harry EVANS (9 Bayley BROWN-MONTGOMERY 16’), 12 Callum TIMMINS, 13 Tommy AMPHLETT, 16 Shane CASSIDY, 18 Luke BODNAR (2 Luke RHODES 87’) – Subs not used: Nil – Red Cards: Perkins 54’ – Referee: David Bruce

11.7.2020

COCKBURN BEAT BAYSWATER IN A SIX-GOAL THRILLER

Cockburn City have won for the first time this season after coming from two goals down to beat Bayswater City 4-2 at Dalmatinac Park. The Cockerels, who were beaten last week at ECU, found themselves two goals down after only 15 minutes, with Gomo Dukuly and Daryl Nicol scoring. Ryan Pratt pulled one back for Scott Miller’s side, before Bayswater lost keeper Devon Spence with injury and his replacement Hayden Browne was them beaten twice before half time by Kristian Santich. Chris Coyne’s side pressed for the equaliser after the break but couldn’t find a way past Luke Radonich and points were wrapped up for Cockburn with Anthony Skorich scoring late to seal the win.

“We went into the game full of confidence despite the result last week,” Cockburn striker Ryan Pratt said. “We know Bayswater are a good side with great quality so it was always going to be a difficult game. We had some shaky moments to start the game, going down 2-0 early, but all credit to the team, we didn’t drop our heads and we kept on fighting. We knew we could create the chances it was just a matter of making them count, and fortunately we managed to do just that. It’s a fantastic result for us and we are looking to carry that on to next week.”

It was the hosts who opened the scoring on six minutes. A ball into the box was misjudged by Luke Radonich and the ball fell to Dukuly who chipped the ball into the net. They doubled their lead six minutes later. Steven Hesketh found Gordon Smith down the left, his cross shot was parried by Radonich and Nicol was on hand to head into an empty net. But Cockburn found a lifeline on the half hour. Jesse Lazzaro found space down the left, he cut the ball back Kristian Santich who picked out Pratt to fire home.

Then on 43 minutes Spence limped off and he was replaced by Hayden Brown, and his first job was to pick the ball out of the net with Kristian Santich curling the ball up and around the wall and finding the top corner of the net. There was worse to come for the new Bayswater keeper and minutes later his poor clearance was pounced on by Kristian Santich and he fired into an empty net.

Bayswater pressed after the break but they couldn’t turn their possession into goals and with them pushing players forward looking for the equaliser they were caught out at the back with Cockburn adding a fourth. David Araya played in Skorich, and the former Bayswater City striker finished clinically to seal the win.

Head Coach Scott Miller was pleased with his side’s performance. “I thought Bayswater were outstanding for the first 15-20 minutes, and they could have had a couple more and finished the game off,” he explained. “But I’m wrapped with my boys' endeavour to hang in and slowly get themselves back in the game and really put on a great performance. After we scored our first goal and took control of the game, and got the win, so I’m really happy.”

Cockburn City – GK Luke RADONICH, 5 Julian TELES, 8 Cameron EDWARDS, 10 David ARAYA, 12 Ryan PRATT (2 Chris THACKRAY 92’), 15 Daniel SANTICH (14 Hayden STEVENS 92’), 16 Ali GHOLAMI, 21 Jesse LAZZARO, 22 Kristian SANTICH (9 Anthony SKORICH 81’), 23 Riley WOODCOCK, 25 Breckan BAKER – Subs not used:, 3 Daniel DOLS, 17 Fanal DEWIT

Bayswater City: GK Devon SPENCE (RGK Hayden BROWNE 43’), 3 Jack ALLEN, 5 David STOKOE, 6 Todd HOWARTH, 7 Daryl NICOL, 8 Gordon SMITH (9 Gustavo GIRON-MARULANDA 71’, 12 Steven HESKETH, 14 Gomo DUKULY, 26 Zayd FARAH, 27 Declan HUGHES, 29 Dean CUMMINGS (21 Kenny KEOGH 71’) - Subs not used: 10 Jason MIRCO, 11 Ryan PEARSON – Referee: Tom Glavovic

11.7.2020

GLORY PUT ON A FIVE-STAR SHOW

Perth Glory have produced a five-star performance to thrash Rockingham City 5-0 at their new home Hartfield Park. Charlie Leech was the hero in the first half, the midfielder bagging a hat trick, before second half goals from Jack Painter-Andrews and Bryce Bafford completed a comprehensive win for Richard Garcia’s side.

“The 5-0 win on the weekend was a good way to get our first three points of the season, the focus was there straight from the off and the early goals allowed us to just grow more and more into the game,” midfielder Charlie Leech said. The results have showed our growth as a team and as individuals, and the performance on and off the ball will give us great confidence going into next week’s game at Gwelup.”

The hosts were out of the blocks early and were ahead on seven minutes when Leech raced clear of the City defence after a great through ball from Bafford and finished clinically past Bradley Stout. The Rockingham keeper then produced a fine save to prevent the impressive Bafford from doubling the home side's lead, but on 17 minutes he was left helpless as Glory added a second.

It was Bafford again who was the provider, he was sent down the right by Aiden Edwards and his low cross was turned home by Leech. Leech completed his hat-trick on the half hour, a long ball sent him clear and he brought the ball down superbly on the run, before finishing low past Stout. Glory weren’t finished and they added a fourth five minutes into the second half, Painter-Andrews firing home from close-range. They added thee fifth on 79 minutes, skipper Giordano Colli's crossing from the left, and Bafford lost his marker and made no mistake from five meters. “It was a good result and a good performance from the team,” Head Coach Richard Garcia said. “It’s very encouraging for the group after last week’s draw, now we have to prepare well this week for the challenge versus Gwelup.”

Perth Glory: GK Sam REILLY, 2 Mason TATFU, 3 Aiden COYNE, 5 Josh RAWLINS, 6 Aiki TSUKAMOTO (13 Jacob MUIR 65’), 7 Joseph FORDE (15 Tyler VECCHIO 70’), 8 Aidan EDWARDS (16 Hugo SNOWDEN 70’), 9 Bryce BAFFORD, 10 Giordano COLLI, 11 Charlie LEECH, 17 Jack PAINTER-ANDREWS – Subs not used: RGK Kade WHITE, 18 Chris DONNELL

Rockingham City: GK Brad STOUT, 2 Maxwell SNELSON, 3 Jarrad MORT, 6 Blake SOKOLOWSKI, 7 Jason POTTIER (11 Jethro YUMANGE 59’), 8 Dylan ROGERS, 9 Sam FOSTER, 10 Luke COLLINS, 14 Ryan KENNEDY, 15 Jacob AQUINO (12 Declan COLLINS 56’), 16 Nathan NG (5 Joseph MOSS 83’) - Subs not used: RGK Taylor CREWS – Referee: Shane Skinner

11.7.2020

GWELUP BRING DOWN THE GULLS

Gwelup Croatia produced a clinical performance to beat a ten-man Sorrento at Percy Doyle Reserve. American striker Hasani Sinclair gave the visitors the lead early, and the home sides chances of a comeback was halted on the hour when midfielder Ollie Annis was sent off. Gwelup made their numerical advantage count and further goals from Ndumba Makeche and Daniel Stynes gave Taki Nicolaidis’ side the points.

“The 3-0 win was the perfect reaction to our disappointing draw the previous week against Inglewood,” Nicolaidis said. “Sorrento made it very hard for us all game and had a few chances themselves however we were more clinical on the day.”

Gwelup were on the front foot from the kick off and they were rewarded on 13 minutes with the opener. A neat back-heel from Makeche found Sinclair and he finished clinically past Matthew Giudicatti. Sorrento hit back and moments later Gwelup keeper Connor Campbell produced a fine double save to deny Cameron Teece and Annis’ rebound, while at the other end Daniel Stynes fired wide late.

The Gulls lifted the tempo after the break and Campbell stood tall to save from Daniel Faichney and Teece. But on 66 minutes Annis received his second yellow from referee Arvin Shanmuganathan for a tackle on Sinclair. Gwelup went in for the kill and Giudicatti did well to deny Jon Stynes, but on 78 minutes they doubled their lead. David Heagney played in Makeche, who raced clear and finished with aplomb. They added a third two minutes from time Heagney again finding Makeche, who played in Daniel Stynes to score.

Sorrento: GK Matthew GIUDICATTI, 3 Jakob PRAJZA (20 Zdenek BEZDEK 62’), 5 Graham TOUGH, 7 Alex MORGAN, 9 Cameron TEECE, 10 Ollie ANNIS, 11 Tim HILL, 18 Jordan BROWN, 19 Jaxon TEMATA (16 Scott WITSCHGE 72’), 21 Daniel FAICHNEY, 22 Tristian COLLI – Subs not used: RGK Patrick HUGHES, 4 Sean KILKELLY, 8 Tristan STEVENS,

Gwelup Croatia: GK Connor CAMPBELL, 2 Ciaran SALINGER (9 David HEAGNEY 72’), 5 Blair GOVAN, 6 Declan HARGREAVES (88 Bobby WILSON 60’), 8 Jon STYNES, 10 Daniel STYNES, 11 Ndumba MAKECHE 12 Hasani SINCLAIR (Sean McManus 79’), 13 Rocco PIZZATA, 14 Shubham MOKALA, 20 Sam MITCHINSON – Subs not used: RGK Aidan HOLLOWAY, 4 Andrew SCALDAFERRO – Referee: Arvin Shanmuganathan

11.7.2020

STATE LEAGUE DIVISION ONE, ROUND TWO – REVIEW

It was week two of the Football West State League Division One, and in our ‘Match of the Round’ Olympic Kingsway continued their perfect start to the season with a 3-1 win against Joondalup United at Forrest Park. The visitors were ahead on the half hour, with Elliott Tattersall curling home a free kick. The home side hit back early in the second half with Jamie Gibson scoring from the penalty spot. But Olympic regained the lead on 55 minutes, good work on the left by Luke Garas, saw him cross to Ajak Riak to finish well. The points were wrapped up on 75 minutes, Gyles Davies heading into the path of Riak who made no mistake from 12 meters. “A very good performance from the players with a fully deserved win which had we been a little more ruthless could have been by more,” Olympic Head Coach Gary Williams said. “The players remained disciplined despite a number of tough tackles and won by playing the better football. It is a good start to the season after two very tough physical encounters against very good opposition.”

League leaders Western Knights also continued their perfect start to the season with a 4-0 win against Ashfield at Nash Field. The visitors held firm for half an hour in this one, but on 39 minutes the hosts hit the front. Jake Sardelic controlled a long ball and then cut it back to Alec Kretowicz, who had only been on the pitch for four minutes, to score. The home sides’ pressure was rewarded after the break when they doubled their lead on the hour. Johnny Chalmers curling in a shot into the top corner from the edge of the box. It was 3-0 on 76 minutes, second half substitute Lewis McMahon tapping home after a neat one-two with Sardelic. The final goal was a great team move involving, Paul Lloyd Adam Harris and McMahon, with Kretowicz scoring to add his second of the match. “It was another good performance by us,” a delighted Knights Head Coach Ivan Zuvela said. “Our structure was tight and our defence was solid against an Ashfield side that made us really work hard for our win.”

It’s a log jam at the top of the table with four teams winning their opening games, and one of them is Forrestfield United who came from behind to beat Subiaco 3-2 at Rosalie Park. The hosts were ahead on 14 minutes with Dominguez Rubina scoring from the penalty spot. Graham Normanton’s side levelled on the half hour when a mistake from a Subiaco defender saw the ball turned over and Vlad Naumovski fired home from 10 meters. The visitors hit the front ten minutes from time with Ben Wantee scoring from the penalty spot. But there was late drama when referee Stephen Knight awarded a third penalty and Dominguez Rubina levelled the score. But two minutes from time Forrestfield won it, Jordan Hart’s effort was saved from point blank range by the Subiaco keeper, but Mitch Crocker was quickest to the rebound to score. “I was pleased with the way we controlled the game, particularly after they went ahead,” Forrestfield skipper Rhys Loxley said. “We had a game plan and stuck to it, and in the end, we got the rewards. On another day we might have scored a few more goals, but overall were just happy to get the three points away from home which we have struggled to do in the past.”

Newly promoted Quinns have also started life in Division One with two wins, the latest a 2-0 win against Fremantle City at Gumblossom Park. The home side were ahead when a corner by Joseph Tweats picked out returning skipper Greg Pellow, and his header gave the keeper no chance. The decisive second goal came from the spot after Richard Howles was brought down in the box and referee Adrien Liechti pointed to the spot. Sam Wynne took the spot kick and scored to secure the three points. Fremantle ended the game with ten men after Jordan Pokler was shown a second yellow card. “We are delighted to take another three points from a very good Fremantle team,” Quinns assistant coach John Lavery said. “We are just enjoying our football just now, and we’re all glad to be back after the COVID lay-off.”

Mandurah City won for the first time this season, coming from behind to beat Stirling Lions 2-1 at Securitas Protect Stadium. It was the visitors who opened the scoring with striker Lawrence Shuruma scoring, and they held that lead until the hour when Mandurah levelled. Joe O’Brien was sent through one on one with Luke Stonebridge and finished well. The Lions then had skipper Ryan Hogan sent off and it was Mandurah who would win it on 76 minutes. A beautifully waited through ball from Daniel Robinson sent Jeff Bright clear he made no mistake. Referee Peter Kaiser then sent off Mandurah Robbie Hamm and Lions Lukas De Lima in stoppage time. “It was a game of two halves - we were poor in the first 45 minutes and lacked tempo and cohesion, but we reacted and responded in the second half running out worthy winners,” Mandurah coach Pete Taylor said. “We had a bumper crowd for our first home game who were absolutely brilliant and that drove the lads forward, so it was a great three points and a solid platform to build on.”

In the final game UWA Nedlands also earned their first points of the season after a 4-1 win against Swan United at the UWA Sports Park. The visitors had the opportunity to go in front early, but UWA keeper Ciaran MacQuillan saved John Monterosso’s penalty. But the home side were ahead on 12 minutes with Lloyd Prout scoring, and he added a second on the half hour. Prout completed his hat-trick on 63 minutes, headed home, before Pascel Sedgwick lobbed Nick Stone to make it 4-0 on 72 minutes. Swan scored a consolation goal late with Albert Amankwaa scoring from a free kick. After the game in some shock news UWA head coach Michael Janssen resigned and the club are on the search for a new coach - thanks to Michael for his help on our website in his time at the club and we wish him all the best in the future.

11.7.2020

STATE LEAGUE DIVISION TWO, ROUND TWO – REVIEW

Canning City sit top of the Football West State League Division Two after a narrow 1-0 win against Murdoch University Melville in our ‘Match of the Round’ at Burrendah Reserve. City were given a reprieve from relegation to the Amateur League last season and Head coach Chris Finlayson has overseen a huge turn around at the club. The only goal of the game came in the final minute with substitute Suyash Vasist scoring and Finlayson said it was a hard-fought win. “We were a little bit unsure how we go with 10 players out of the first and Reserve squads, so it was case of giving fringe players an opportunity to step up and they didn’t let us down the attitude was outstanding,” he explained.

“It was fast and furious the pace of the game was very quick and neither team really got to settle down, we implemented a couple of things from during the week and they paid off which was pleasing to see. The second half wasn’t any different the intensity from both sides didn’t drop off and full credit to all the players, there was absolutely nothing between the sides and you knew there would be only one goal in it. We made a couple of subs just to get some fresh legs out there and late in the game we snatched a goal through Suyash. Full credit to both sides and a to be honest a draw would have been a fair result but we take the points and move onto next week hopefully with full squads to select from.”

Wanneroo City sit in second spot on goal difference after they won for the second time this season, a 2-0 win against Carramar Shamrock Rovers at Wanneroo Reserve. The home side were ahead on the half hour, when Alec Robinson broke through and finished clinically past the keeper. They wrapped up the points on 75 minutes, good work Flynn Nolan, who kept the ball alive when it looked like rolling out for a goal kick, and he cut in and finished low past the keeper. “Wanneroo Head Coach Jesse Bridgeman said it wasn’t the best of games but it’s three points. “Yes overall, it was a very scrappy game, but we’re very happy to get the three points,” he explained. “But a clean sheet is also pleasing against a good side.”

It was a historic day for Kingsley Westside on Saturday, when they won their first ever State League game with a 6-0 thrashing of Kelmscott Roos at Frye Park. “Very exciting and relieved to get our first state league points , and it felt good to get the monkey off the back, so to speak,” Head Coach Steven Dimitrovich said. “Hopefully onwards and upwards from here on in.” The visitors were ahead on five minutes, Jayden Drummond pouncing on a mistake from a defender to score. Drummond added his second on 37 minutes, Ramiro Vilar crossed from the right and he finished it at the back post. Kingsley Westside took control after the break, and Drummond turned provider on 54 minutes, sending Vilar one-on-one with the keeper and he dinked over him to make it 3-0. It was soon four, when Bailey Salmon played in for Josh Waldock who headed home on the hour.

It was 5-0 seven minutes later was a Vilar scoring a penalty, and it was 6-0 ten minutes from time when Drummond raced down the flank and cut the ball back to Adam O’Neil, whose shot was well saved but Cameron Bishop was on hand to fire home the rebound. “It was a strange week after all the hype for the Wanneroo game but we had to put our head down and focus on the task ahead,” Drummond said. “First half was quite poor even though we were 2-0 up, we weren’t too happy, but we came out in the second half and really turned it on and put four more goals away which could’ve been five or six. It’s our first three points in state league which is a proud moment for the club. The league seems very tight this year, everyone can beat everyone by the looks of it. All eyes are on Curtin now next weekend and hopefully we can push on from there.”

Dianella White Eagles are on the board this season under new coach Rod Banjac after a 2-0 win against Joondalup City at Dianella Reserve. It was a tight game with both sides cancelling each other out, but it was the hosts who hit the front on 66 minutes. Stephen Musonda received the ball just outside the penalty area after a good build up down the left, he beat two players and cut the ball back to Asa Sippits who made no mistake from 10 meters out. They wrapped up the points on 77 minutes following some great wing play by Sippits on the right, finding Chris Rizidis just outside the box who then beat his marker and found Slobodan Vulin who expertly finished to wrap the game up. Hard working Rizidis had an opportunity towards the end to reward himself for a great performance on the day with a goal but somehow missed the target when it was much easier to score.

Head Coach Rod Banjac said it was a good win for his side. “The game started off with an element of caution as we wanted to ease our way into the match and work on constructing good opportunities for a strike on target without exposing ourselves at the back. In saying that we were in control for long periods creating a few good chances but the half-finished scoreless. The increase in the pace of the game was evident from the very beginning of the second half as we searched for an opener and we got them,” he said. “Saturday was a complete contrast from the previous week and the boys could not pick a better time to turn it on as the crowd swelled to almost full capacity. Joondalup City proved to be a tough opponent and contributed to the spectacle by playing in the spirit of the game through a good brand of football which was very much appreciated by the big crowd. Football was the obvious and outright winner as were the spectators who enjoyed every minute of a quality game as well as the hospitality provided by our hard-working members. Now we look towards Saturday when we will be hosting league leaders Wanneroo City in front of what should be a capacity crowd.”

Gosnells City also won for the first time this season after a 3-0 win against Balga at Princess Road Reserve. Marc Anthony’s side were ahead on 12 minutes, a good run in behind from Scott Pereira, and he chipped it over the keeper. It was 2-0 on the half hour, with a free kick from Feisal Zaw. The points were made save on 69 minutes when Gosnells added a their third. Pereira adding his second, beating Balga keeper Lance Alavakis to the ball and heading home. “Good performance and a big improvement on last week,” Gosnells Head coach Marc Anthony said. “We’re really pleased with our progression and a clean sheet is a big plus.”

The round started on Friday evening when Morley Windmills came home from Edinburgh Oval with a 2-0 win against Curtin University. Morley were ahead after only two minutes, Ryan Treacey’s corner was headed on by Mark Donnelly and Steve Kantor scored from close-range at the far post. Curtin pressed for the equaliser, but it was Morley who wrapped up the points four minutes from time, with Scott Wrightson scoring from the penalty spot after a handball on the goal line. “It was a good win for the lads after last week’s disappointing result against Kelmscott,” Morley Head coach Jason van Rooy said. “Scoring early allowed us to take our time and play patiently as we knew Curtin would need to press more to score. We defended well and as a result scored the second goal, we now look forward to taking on unbeaten Canning this weekend at home.”

11.7.2020

CLUB IN PROFILE - FREMANTLE CITY FOOTBALL CLUB

Fremantle City Football Club was formed in 2015 after a joint venture agreement was signed by its parent clubs, Fremantle United and East Fremantle Tricolore.

Tricolore is the oldest of the parent clubs, formed in 1953 by Italian immigrants in the Fremantle area. In their first season they finished runners-up in the old Division Three south competition of the Western Australian Soccer Football Association. From there it was a rapid rise up the leagues, winning the old Second Division in 1955 and gaining promotion the top flight the following year.

After a difficult first season in the big league in 1956, it didn't take long for the club to gain major honours. Winning their first association state championship in 1958 over arch rivals Azzurri. Two years later Tricolore along with seven other clubs formed the first semi-professional league in the state after they broke away from the WASFA. This would be the start of a golden era for the club, after finishing runners-up in 1961 and 1962 and also winning the state cup twice, Tricolore then made it three state championships in a row from 1963 to 1965.

Tricolore went on to win two more state titles in 1970 and 1972, plus added six more state cup wins in 1966, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1978 and 1979. Tricolore was only ever threatened with relegation once, and that was when they avoided the drop on the last day in 1980.

The club was a consistent performer in the 1980's, however in 1987 Tricolore were in talks with Perth Azzurri and Balcatta Etna to form a new club with intentions of going to the National Soccer League. The newly merged club would become Perth Italia (now Perth SC) and would become a force in WA football. Tricolore continued on as a junior club, and later ran a social men's side and a successful women's team prior to talks with Fremantle United in 2014.

Fremantle United was formed in 1979 with the help of Alastair Mackay, but it wasn't until 1982 when the black and whites joined what would today be known as Division Two of the amateur competition. The club finished second in 1984 to earn promotion, and won promotion again the following year when they won Division One.

1986 was to be the first year that Fremantle would be in the top flight of the amateur league, and also the start of their dominance of the competition. They won their first state amateur championship in 1988, and went on to win three of the next four seasons. It was a fact that from 1988 to 1998, the club finished no lower then second (except for third in 1990) and won six league titles all up in that period.

Fremantle United would win more Amateur Premier League titles in 1998 and 2000 before disaster struck in 2004 which led to their first ever relegation. To their credit the black and whites went straight back up to win the Division One title under coach Rob Pagnoni before winning the Premier League once again in 2008 under new coach Jason Smith. The club were offered promotion to the State League, however after much discussion it was decided to stay in the Amateur League.

Another relegation was followed in 2010 when the club finished last, but did well to climb to third in the Amateur First Division in 2011. It was this season that the club made the brave decision to apply for the new State League Division Two competition, and were then accepted by Football West. It was an end of era, with Fremantle United being one of the most successful clubs in their twenty-nine seasons in the Amateur competition. They won the Premier League on eights occasions and finished runners-up seven times. They also competed in ten Amateur Cup finals, winning five of them.

In 2012 a new exciting era was to start for Fremantle United, with their first ever game in the semi-professional competition being played at Hilton Reserve against Quinns FC. The back and whites won 2-1, and ended up finishing the season in third place. Another third place followed in 2013 before the club fell to sixth in 2014. It was during this year the club were in talks with nearby East Fremantle Tricolore in forming a joint venture between the clubs. This was later agreed to, and the Fremantle City Football Club was born.

The new look Fremantle City took to the park in 2015 under new coach Steve Plucknett, and success followed. The following year the club took out the Division Two title and promotion that came with it. After a mid-table finish in their first ever season in Division One, the club targeted promotion to the NPL-WA and got to as high as third under new coach March Anthony in 2018, where they also won the lower division night series earlier in the year.

In 2020, Cameron Lord took over as new coach, and will be once again one of the favourites to win Division One, with promotion to the NPL-WA in the years to follow to be his main aim.

SEMI-PROFESSIONAL LEAGUE HONOURS (Using current divisional names)
Premier League winners - 1963, 1964, 1965, 1970, 1972 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Premier League runners-up - 11961, 1962, 1969, 1975, 1982 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Cup winners - 1961, 1962, 1966, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1978, 1979 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Cup runners-up - 1960, 1963, 1967, 1969, 1974, 1982, 1983 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Premier League Top Four/Five Cup winners - 1961, 1969, 1970 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Premier League Top Four/Five Cup runners-up - 1962, 1963, 1971 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Night Series winners - 1963, 1966, 1984 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Night Series runners-up - 1972, 1978 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Cup runners-up - 1960, 1963, 1967, 1969, 1974, 1982, 1983 (East Fremantle Tricolore)
Second Division winners - 2016
Night Series Lower Division winners - 2018

10.7.2020

NPL-WA ROUND TWO PREVIEW

It’s week two of the NPLWA and our ‘Match of the Round’ takes us to Dorrien Gardens where Perth SC host Floreat Athena in the ‘Town of Vincent Cup’. The visitors had to work hard before beating Armadale in the opening round, while Perth conceded late to draw at Bayswater. All games between these two teams are always entertaining and this one has all the ingredients to be another and entry is free.

Floreat Athena Head Coach Ante Kovacevic was pleased with his side’s performance first up against a hardworking and organised Armadale side, but he is just happy to be back playing football. “No doubt everyone involved in the game loved seeing the season kick off again. It was a tough break with a lot of unknowns,” he explained.

“But credit to the players who kept a decent level of fitness during this time, and undertake another mini pre-season before kicking the season off last weekend. It was a tough game as we expected against Armadale. They were well organised and disciplined in the game plan and made it difficult for us. Credit to our boys, who came back well in the second half after giving away a cheap goal early in the second half.”

New Floreat striker Noah Shamaki was a constant threat last weekend and the coach said he’s been a good acquisition to the squad. “Noah has been fantastic for the team, and he has great attributes for a striker... strong, quick, works hard for the team, holds the ball up well and always a goal threat in and around the box,” Kovacevic said. “He is also a fantastic character to boot, and I’m surprised he hasn't made more of an impact in the NPL over the years.”

Kovacevic is expecting another tough assignment on Saturday at the home of the Champions, but his looking forward to the challenge. “My initial thoughts about heading to Dorrien Gardens to meet Perth SC is a sense of deja vu. I'm not sure who made the decision to schedule another Athena vs Perth SC clash in Round two of the new season after playing them in Round 1 back in March, but it just doesn't seem fair,” he said. “This is our third game against Perth SC scheduled by FW at Dorrien Gardens in our last five competitive matches. It’s interesting, but I'm sure there'll be another intense game and good football on show for an expected bumper crowd.”

Like his Floreat counterpart Perth Head Coach Ramon Falzon is pleased to be back playing, but still has reservations. “The last few months have been difficult for all of us. The pandemic significantly impacted life as we knew it, however we had to follow the advice of the medical experts. They led WA to be in this good position, practically virus free, and hence we could return to some form of football activity,” he explained.

“The modified competition has a different feeling to it. Unfortunately, the pandemic forced us to not have a normal 2020 season, however it is a great to be involved in reactivating football in WA. From our side, we were delighted to cap off a good pre-season by winning the Night Series and finishing the competition off undefeated. Following the break due to the pandemic, our objectives have shifted to utilising the modified NPL this year to further develop and strengthen the quality within our squad in preparation for the years to come.”

Falzon was pleased with his side endeavour against Bayswater, but their profligacy in front of goal cost them late. “It was a hard-fought game against Bayswater last Friday; I always expect it to be that way due to the quality of their squad and the healthy rivalry between the clubs. I think both first team squads, Bayswater and us, deserve big credit for last Friday’s game. The quality demonstrated by both sides after nearly four months of no competitive football was great to see,” he said.

“I’m sure that it was an entertaining contest for the public present at the game. I think we settled very well in the game, held possession for lengthy periods in the first half and managed to capitalise before half-time. In the second half we missed three great opportunities to double our score line. We are all familiar with the unwritten rule in football; if you miss your chances you end up getting punished, and that happened in the dying minutes when Bayswater managed to level through a brilliantly executed free kick.”

New signing Yagoub Mustafa was outstanding last week, and Falzon said he played well, and was pleased with the whole side. Yagoub has been an excellent addition for us. He settled into our system and playing style very quickly, and he has a great work ethic and his attitude mirrors his professional approach to our training,” he said. “It is satisfying for us coaches when we see the player’s commitment at training paying off in games like Yagoub’s performance was last Friday.

“He was very unpredictable in the attacking half and he was a constant threat to the opposition’s back line. From my side, I always prefer focusing on the collective performance and last Friday’s was extremely pleasing for us coaches. We are currently in a situation where we have a substantial number of players not available for selection, mainly due to injuries. Therefore, we are utilising this period to give opportunities to youngsters from within our training environment, with some of them making their NPL first team debut, and we were very happy with their performances last Friday.”

Falzon said they are looking forward to playing at home, but knows they will need to be at their best against a talented Floreat side. “Floreat had a good season last year and they look to be on track to be a highly competitive team once again this year. Our encounters against Floreat are usually great games to watch because of the football quality and the intensity injected by both teams, and that is our expectation for this Saturday,” he explained. “Floreat tend to be dangerous going forward and they are aggressive in their attempts to regain possession. They had a strong start to this season, so we are expecting a tough clash on Saturday, however we are keen to keep building our momentum following the positive results in the Night Series and last Friday’s game.”

There are some good games in the other fixtures in week two, and first up Kenny Lowe’s ECU Joondalup will be looking to maintain their winning start when they make the trip to Perth Plasterboard Centre Stadium to take on Inglewood United. New striker Danny Hodgson and Andy Higgins we’re in target in the Jacks win against Cockburn, but his new look side will face a stern test in this one. Andres Oliveira’s side drew at Gwelup last week with Brendan Italiano levelling in a good performance as they will be looking to build on that on Saturday.

Sorrento sit table of table after their big win at Rockingham, and this week they host Gwelup Croatia at Percy Doyle Reserve. The visitors were held at home last week by Inglewood with Ndumba Makeche on target and Taki Nicolaidis’ side will be looking to bounce back this week. Jamie Harnwell’s side produced a great performance last week and Gwelup will need to keep an eye on striker Cameron Teece who bagged four in the 6-1 rout, this one should be a great game.

Perth Glory earned a point in their opener at Balcatta and this week they host Rockingham City in their new home Hartfield Park. It wasn’t the best of starts for new Rockingham City Head Coach Gary Christie, we’ll beaten by Sorrento. But it wasn’t helped by the sending off of Lydon Hodgkiss and Michael Farmer, who both miss Saturday’s game. Richard Garcia’s side had to come from behind to draw last week with Bryce Bafford on target, but once again the youngsters showed they will be very competitive again in 2020.

Glory skipper Giordano Colli said the young side are getting better. “I thought we were good game as a team in the first half, and I thought we were just finding our feet and rhythm,” he said. “But in the second half I thought we had the better of them and could of came out with the win. The lads weren’t happy with just a point but we will take a point and look ahead to Saturday. We are very confident going into the game, we have had a good week of training under our belt and hope to capitalise on their poor start to the season.”

Cockburn City were very unfortunate not to take anything away from their trip to Joondalup last week, and they will be looking to change that when they host Bayswater City at Dalmatinac Park. Scott Miller’s side played with ten men for the whole second half last week, but did gave plenty of chances that they failed to take and they go into this one without the suspended Ashley Rosindale. Bayswater striker Luke Salmon scored late to earn Chris Coyne’s side a point against Perth but like Cockburn they had enough chances to win the game, so they will be looking to put that right on Saturday.

In the final game we head to Alfred Skeet Reserve where Armadale host Balcatta. The visitors were held to a draw by Glory last week, but Bobby Tanseski’s side had their chances to win it and will be hoping they turn them into goals this week. Armadale were edged out at Floreat last week and pushing for an equaliser late they were caught out with a counter attack to lose 3-1. Head Coach John O’Reilly was happy how his side competed. “Last week I thought we put in a solid performance against Floreat Athena. We were chasing the game late at 1-2, and had them under a great deal of pressure,” he explained.

“But they nicked a late goal to finish our charge, but there were a lot of positives to take away from the game.” O’Reilly said Saturday will be another tough game but he said they are looking forward to game and playing in front of the home supporters. “Saturday will be another tough test against a Balcatta side who finished in the top four last season,” he said. “I hope our loyal supporters can get behind the lads today, and we hope to give something to cheers about.”

10.7.2020

STATE LEAGUE DIVISION ONE, ROUND TWO – PREVIEW

It’s week two of the Football West State League Division One, and our ‘Match of the Round’ takes us to Forrest Park where Joondalup United host Olympic Kingsway. Both sides are coming off wins in the opening round, Olympic edging out Mandurah at home, while Joondalup came away from Ashfield with a big win, so this one should be a great game as both look to maintain their good start to the season.

Joondalup Head Coach Nick Jennings was pleased to start the season with a win with new signing Jay Lang bagging a brace. “A good start to the season and I thought we were the better team throughout the game on a difficult pitch,” he said. “Jay is an experienced player who leads by example, and I’ve tried signing him 2/3 times over the years and finally this year we got our man. Since his arrival he’s been top quality both on and off the pitch and certainly hit the ground running in his competitive debut for the club with two superb strikes.”

Jennings said they now need to get their home form right, after only winning on game on home soil last season. “To be honest, last year we were appalling at home end of,” he explained. “We tried many things to turn it around which in the main failed, so here’s hoping the new playing group starting on Saturday can start to put things right.”

The coach is expecting Saturday’s game to be a tough test against a talented Olympic side, but he said they are ready for it. “Olympic Kingsway, under Gary (Williams) have assembled an impressive squad and we face a huge challenge this weekend against one of the favourites for the title,” Jennings said. “However, we fear no one and will have a real go as we look to build on last week’s victory.”

The win against Mandurah was a good way for Olympic to start the season, but Head Coach Gary Williams said they were down on numbers and had to work for it. “It is always great to start the season with a win, and Mandurah are a good side and I’m sure they will take points from a lot of clubs this season,” he said. “We were without six first team players on Saturday and despite this we put in a solid performance. Tyler Garner came in for his debut and controlled the midfield with Gyles Davies and Elliott Tattersall. Ajak Riak has returned to the club and scored with an impressive first-time volley and was a threat throughout, until he got injured early in the second half.”

Olympic are a very ambitious club and are eying a place in the NPL in the future, but with relegation and promotion off the table this season Williams said they will be doing all they can to improve on last season’s fourth place finish. “The club are run extremely efficiently and have a model which provides sustainability. The club are very ambitious and want to be playing in the NPL at the earliest opportunity,” he explained.

“It was our intention to push for the title this year however Covid-19 put an end to that so we are building for a tilt at the title in 2021. The league is very competitive and there are several good teams who all have a chance of winning the league this year. We will concentrate on our own backyard and continue to improve with our young energetic team, and another seasons experience will stand them in good stead for 2021.”

Williams said they are looking forward to the trip to Joondalup, and if last season is anything to go by it will be another tight game. “We are looking forward to our short journey to Joondalup United this week, and this is always a tough fixture and we were lucky to come away with a 1-1 draw in the same fixture last year,” he said. “There will be times this week when we are going to have to dig in deep, but it will be a good test for us.”

Quinns play their first ever home game in the league at Gumblossom Park when they host Fremantle City. The newly promoted side started life in Division One with a 1-0 win at Stirling, and Head Coach Ian Ferguson will be looking for more of the same this week. Cameron Lord’s Fremantle City also won in the first round against Subiaco and the new coach’s side looked impressive, so this one will be tight affair.

In other games this weekend Forrestfield United will look to build on their first up win against UWA when they visit Rosalie Park to take on Brad Hassell’s Subiaco, Mandurah City host Stirling Lions at Securitas Protect Stadium, both searching for their first win of the season, likewise Swan United and UWA Nedlands who meet at the UWA Sports Park. In the final game Western Knights entertains Ashfield at Nash Field.

It’s been a difficult start to the season on and off the park for Ashfield, but new coach Mitch Prentice will have his side ready for the tough task of playing the league leaders. Knights Head Coach Ivan Zuvela was pleased the way his new look side performed in the big win at Swan last week, especially his young debutant. “We were very happy with our performance against Swan. It isn’t an easy place to play and I thought they were a well-structured side,” he said. “It was a solid team performance from our point of view, and one of the most pleasing things was giving a 15-year-old his debut, Joni Zlendic.”

Zuvela said they are looking forward to playing at Nash Field, but he says they can’t underestimate Ashfield who have been there or thereabouts in recent seasons, but Saturday is all about his side. “I don’t really know too much about Ashfield and to be honest we don’t really focus too much on what other teams do,” he said. “We focus on our own team environment and try and be competitive every week, and we are looking forward to playing our first home game of the season in front of our home crowd.”

10.7.2020

STATE LEAGUE DIVISION TWO, ROUND TWO – PREVIEW

We head into week two of the Football West State League Division Two and our ‘Match of the Round’ sees Joondalup City make the trip to Dianella Reserve to take on Dianella White Eagles. Joondalup opened the season with a win against Balga, while the Eagles let a two-goal lead slip at Carramar Shamrock Rovers and they will want to bounce back this week.

Dianella Head Coach Rod Banjac said the performance was pleasing, but they failed to put them away early. “Certainly not the result we wanted, or expected, especially after taking a two-goal lead. But we are not taking anything away from Carramar Shamrock Rovers as passion, desire, commitment and sheer determination they displayed throughout the match, right until the final whistle was to be very much admired,” he explained.

“We knew exactly what we were in for and what to expect but struggled to deal with the challenges on the day. We have also learned that it will take a lot more than talent, skill and good football to be competitive in this highly energetic league. Individual and collective discipline as well as tremendous desire to compete throughout the entire match is absolutely imperative, and stands above everything else. In saying that there were many positives and we will build on them. Now we regroup, re focus and prepare ourselves for the next game.”

The club are on the rebuild and Banjac is looking to consolidate this season and hopes to push on when promotion and relegation is in the table again. “This situation in regards to no promotion or relegation is proving to be ideal for our club, allowing time to consolidate and prepare to challenge for the title next year. Expectations for the future are high and so they should be,” he said. “Dianella are a huge club enjoying the biggest support base in the state and have every right to set high expectations for their most senior team. To demand results and ultimately push for promotion to the very echelon of WA Football is acceptable and realistic for a club of this size.

“The energy, support and optimism throughout the club is fantastic. All involved are promoting and contributing to the healthy culture and environment for everyone to enjoy, and in particular for the coaching staff and players. I’ve been involved at every level of competition in this State and can say without bias that it would be hard to find a club that appreciates a good game of football, or a good footballer as much as the supporters of Dianella White Eagles. These people don’t love football, they adore it, and we as coaching and playing group will do our best to provide them with quality entertainment throughout the season.”

Banjac said Joondalup are a strong side and is expecting a tough game but he is hoping their loyal supporters can get behind them on Saturday. “Joondalup City have improved out of sight in recent times. They invested heavily into their juniors and youth over the years resulting in a very good squad. We are aware of how well they competed during the night series,” he said. “They also held their own against some highly fancied NPL opponents during the preseason, so beating a good side like Balga in the last round came as no surprise.

“We certainly look forward to hosting them at our ground and with our loyal supporters behind us we approach this game with caution as well as a good level of optimism. No doubt it will be a great spectacle as both sides are very mobile and have the ability to play quality football with intensity. Last week we were missing one vital aspect from our game and very much look forward to implementing corrective measures ASAP. Needless to say that Saturday can’t arrive quick enough as our boys are hurting from last week’s loss and look forward to putting that behind them with a good performance against a good team in Joondalup City on the weekend.”

Joondalup Head Coach Nigel Smith was pleased with the 2-0 win against Balga and he said it was a perfect start to the season. “It was a good opening fixture for us to come through, so three points and clean sheet is always good,” he said. “We knew Balga are always a strong test for any team in the league, so at the end of the day I was very pleased with the performance the lads produced on the day.”

The northern suburbs club are hoping to be in the title mix this season and like Dianella will be eyeing promotion in 2021, but Smith knows consistency is the key. “Yes, the club is ambitious and we do need to push on and use this season as a platform for next season for promotion,” he explained. “Regardless of promotion or relegation it’s important that the lads produce good consistent performances week after week to put you in a position to win league, and that’s what we are looking for.”

Smith is expecting a stern test against Dianella and he knows they will have to be on their toes early as they had a fast start in their last game. “They (Dianella) will be another good test for us and with a new coach in place, players will be trying to impress him,” he said. “They were very fast of the mark last week with two very early goals, so we will need to keep it tight. But I’ll be looking for another solid performance to keep the momentum going and hopefully coming away with the three points.”

The round kicks off tonight when Curtin University new coach Tim Cash is in charge of his first game at the campus when they host Jason Van Rooy’s Morley Windmills at the Curtin Arena at Edinburgh Oval. 8.30pm)) Both sides were narrowly beaten last week, Curtin losing at Murdoch while Morley were edged out by Kelmscott, so both will be desperate to get their season going,

In other games in Saturday, Wanneroo City host Carramar Shamrock Rovers at Wanneroo Reserve, and both sides produced big wins in the opening round against Kingsley And Dianella respectively. It is also the “Go Pink For Linda” game on Saturday, so it would great if you can show your support for this great cause and remember Linda who was a member of Wanneroo and Rovers in the past.

Both Gosnells City and Balga will be looking to bounce back from first round defeats when they meet at Princess Road Reserve, while Kingsley Westside while go in search of their first win in State League football when they travel to Frye Park to take on Kelmscott Roos. In the final game Canning City host Murdoch University Melville at Burrendah Reserve.

Both these sides won on the opening day, and new MUM Head coach Danny Ciampini saw his side beat Curtin, while Canning new coach Chris Finlayson saw his side win the ‘Frank Longstaff Trophy’ at Gosnells. Finlayson said it was great to win the game, but it was even better to get back playing competitive football. “It was great to get back into football for everyone, and it’s fantastic how Football West and the clubs have got on with it and everyone should be thankful we are back out there - full credit to everyone,” he said. “Against Gosnells, the lads showed the intensity wasn’t lost from the Night Series, perhaps we were a little rusty in other areas but overall, I couldn’t be prouder of the lads, it’s a great bunch.”

It’s a first senior role for Finlayson, but he’s enjoying the challenge, but is disappointed that there is no promotion this season. “As a club we are disappointed there isn’t a promotion to play for this year, as we haven’t lost many players, in fact it’s hard turning players away at the moment so while it’s a new Squad and a young one we can use the season to get things right for 2021,” he explained. “But we certainly won’t be taking things easy and while there are finals it’s irrelevant what the format is this year we want to be there. It’s important to build success whatever the platform is you can’t grow and build without improvements year on year and while we maybe ticking a lot of boxes, we have expeditions of ourselves.”

It will be another tough test for Finlayson’s side on Saturday against MUM, but the coach said its business as usual. “This weekend’s match is just that another game for us, it doesn’t matter who the club is called we have to get our game plan working and just worry about ourselves,” he said. “We have played a lot of Division One sides in pre-season, a couple of NPL sides and we never worried who they were we just get on with things go out there and do our jobs. Every team will be difficult this year I can’t see anyone running away with it - there are very good coaches are spread throughout the clubs this season and without a doubt you want your home ground to be something difficult for the opponent we have to make ours difficult and I’m sure in time ours will become a very difficult place to get points.”

10.7.2020

BELT UP AMATEUR LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION - ROUND FOUR PREVIEW

It’s week four of the Belt-up Amateur Premier Division and our ‘Match of the Round takes us to Coker Park where Queens Park host North Perth United. The home side were edged out by unbeaten Hamersley Rover last week, while North Perth scored the only goal against Quinns. Queens Park coach Ricardo Fynn said they performed well against Hamersley, but despite fighting back from two goals down they came away empty handed. “Last week was extremely frustrating for me and the group, and I felt we deserved more from the game and key decisions went against us in the game,” he said. “Saying that credit to Hamersley who started quickly and were ruthless with their chances in the first half and went 2 -0 into the break.

“We started quicker in the second half and within a minute pulled it back to 2-1. We had a spell of maybe 15 minutes where we drew level and had the momentum. Had it not been for the Hammers keeper we could have been up by one or two going into last 20 minutes. But eventually the experience of Hamersley showed and we conceded the third goal. It was a very hard loss to take, but we will need to start quicker and take chances if we are going to do well in this league.”

Fynn said Sunday will be another tough game, but they are hoping to make Coker Park a fortress. “We are aware North Perth is another tough game, and they have been one of the best teams in this league for a number of years,” he explained. “We know their quality and we will need to be at our very best if we are going to get anything out of this game. We are excited about coming up against the best four or five teams in our opening four games and We will continue being competitive and honest and look forward to making the visit to Coker Park as unpleasant as possible.”

North Perth Coach Alex Carter said the win against Quinns was hard fought, but deserved. “It was a pleasing and very well deserved three points at the end of the day,” he said. “I thought we applied ourselves really well over the full 90 minutes which is a first for us this year. We continued to try play ball all game and never went into our shells once.’

Carter said Sunday will be a good game, and he has been impressed with how Queens Park have played so far. “We are looking forward to our trip to queens Park, and three points there would start to shape our season,” he said. “From what we saw of them in the night series they can score goals and in fast bursts, so if we switch off at any point or don’t come in the right frame of mind there may not be three points come 5pm.”

The round starts on Saturday evening when South West Phoenix host Maddington White City at WML Stadium. Maddington were beaten at UWA last week, and will want to get back to the winners circle this week. The Phoenix were edged out by Jaguar and keeper Jamie Oakley said after fighting back after the break they let it slip late. “Yes, it was a disappointing loss, especially after getting back into the game in the second half,” the keeper explained. “We had a poor first half and found ourselves two goals down at half time.

“After a few changes at half time, we came out the second half and put some more pressure on Jags and got ourselves back to 2-2. We had all the momentum but couldn’t get ourselves the winner. A sloppy pass at the back on their bobbly pitch and we gave Jags the lead again which sapped all our momentum in the last minutes. But it was encouraging to show a bit of heart after halftime and make a game of it, we could have easily dropped our heads and given up.”

The Phoenix dropped out of Football West last season, but Oakley said they are looking forward to getting back to State League and or NPL football where the club belongs “The club as a whole has aspirations to get back to the top as soon as possible, we showed when we were in the NPL we could hold our own. We’ve got some of the best facilities in the state, and great catchment area for players down here in the South West, so it is just a matter of getting everyone down here on board and heading in the same direction which is ultimately back to the pinnacle of NPL,” he explained.

“I think we’re heading in the right direction though; we’ve got some good people at the club putting things in place and working hard off the field to set things right. The local clubs are starting to get behind us and provide their support which is great, we’ve got a great junior NPL base, and our current squad is made up of some great young talented players to help us push for promotion through the leagues once that’s back on the cards.”

Oakley said they are looking to get their first win of the new season, but they need to be at their best. “We’re all looking forward to Saturday night’s game under light, and to be fair we should’ve got more out of our last two games, so we will be looking to set that right this week and get the first win on the board,” he said. “We don’t know too much about any teams in this league, but we fancy ourselves against anyone especially at home and we’ll look to go out and play our exciting, free flowing brand of football and hopefully this week we’ll put a few goals away for the local supporters. We’ve signed a couple of new players this week, and have a few more that have come back in, so it’s been a good week on the training park with some healthy competition for spots in both the first team and reserves.”

In other games this weekend Wembley Downs host Hamersley Rovers at Butlers Reserve, league leaders Joondalup United make the trip to Kelly Park to take on Kwinana United, while Leeming Strikers entertain UWA Nedlands at John Connell Reserve. In the final game Quinns host Jaguar at Gumblossom Park. Quinns were edged out by North Perth last week, and Coach David Ashworth said their keeper denied them.

“In the first half we set the pace moving the ball well and as you say created some very good chances if not for the excellent acrobatics of North Perth keeper Jamie Sera, we could have been 2-3 up,” he said. “Unfortunately, due to our missed opportunities the pressure turned onto us, and a mistake at the back gifted them the opportunity to go 1-0 up and they were clinical. Chasing the game from that point wasn't enough with Jamie again exercising his super powers.”

The Quinns club is flying at the moment, with the State League boys improving each season and last season you Ashworth’s side were runners-up, so the club is on the up. “Fergie and his back-room staff have done a fantastic job with the state side building on their success from last year. They are playing some great football and although a strange year with COVID hopefully they can capitalize with some silverware,” he said.

“It’s not been the start we wanted; we have really struggled with injuries since the break, which is a bit on an excuse, some key players from last year will be out for another few weeks but we wait in anticipation for their return. That being said we have been playing some good football which is key in turning the results around and hopefully with a little luck against Jags this weekend this will be the kick start we need.”

Ashworth said Sunday’s opponents are a god side and they will need to be at their best to get the points. “They (Jags) are a good ball retention side who move the ball quickly it will be a good test for us this weekend on our fitness and patience with the ball,” he explained. “With their win last week, I’m sure they will be keen to capitalize, but we will be ready and prepared for the game with a desire to kick start our season with a first win.”

Jags Malek Domkoc was on target in last week's win, and he said it was their best performance of the season. “It was a tough game last weekend, and Phoenix really brought us their A-game,” he said. “Although we had a comfortable start in the first half with a 2-0 lead, they came back strong in the second half and were able to pull two goals back to level the game 2-2. Phoenix had a few chances to take the lead but were unable to convert them and with the last five minutes of the game, we took the lead again with two more goals and finished it off 4-2 win, it was a brilliant performance from the boys.”

Domkoc said they are looking to maintain their current form at Quinns on Sunday. “Last week was a great win and I'm proud of the boys for putting in a great work to get the points but our focus is on to the next game which Quinns and we know they're a strong team,” he said. “Their performance last year was outstanding and I have no doubt it'll be a great game this weekend.”

Jags Head Coach Chol Kong said they will be looking to continue last season's good form, and a trip to Quinns is a great challenge. “Finishing third last season was an outstanding achieve by the lads and finishing in the top three in this tough league is not easy, but we would have loved to finish higher,” he explained.

“This year we set ourselves targets and we will do our best to put results together and see where we end up at the end of the season, we trying not to get carried away with where we finish last year. Travelling to Quinns we know it's going to be another tough game, as they are a very good team. We know they strengths and we will have to be on our best to get another result as no team is easy in this league.”

9.7.2020

WILLIAMS: 'I WAS IMMENSELY JEALOUS WATCHING ARSENAL'

Matildas goalkeeper Lydia Williams has signed for English giants Arsenal. The 32-year old Katanning-born shot-stopper becomes the eighth Australian in the Women's Super League after signing a one-year deal with the Gunners with the option to renew for a second season.

The move to North London caps a strong season for Williams, who set a new W-League record for the longest without conceding en route to winning the 2020 W-League championship with Melbourne City. “At Melbourne City I worked with (Arsenal Women manager) Joe (Montemurro) the second season he was there,” Williams said.

“I always wanted to go to Europe as the next step. Obviously seeing what he did (winning the WSL in 2018/19) I was immensely jealous and when the opportunity came to be a part of it I jumped at the chance. And playing with Caitlin (Foord) at club level, which I don’t think we’ve done yet, is another reason I am pumped to be at Arsenal.”

"I am always excited for whatever club I play for, it's always an honour ... but it's kind of crazy because you watch these teams in the English Premier League as a young kid and now there's an opportunity to represent a club that you grew up watching. It feels pretty surreal."

Williams joins fellow Australians Steph Catley, Caitlin Foord (Arsenal), Samantha Kerr (Chelsea), Chloe Logarzo, Ella Mastrantonio (Bristol City), Jacynta Galabadaarachchi (West Ham United) and Hayley Raso (Everton) in the WSL. Additionally, Ellie Carpenter (Lyon), Kyah Simon, Amy Harrison (PSV Eindhoven) and Alex Chidiac (Atletico Madrid) are playing elsewhere in Europe.

8.7.2020

FFA CUP CANCELLED FOR 2020

The formation of the FFA Cup has given the state league clubs and minnows the opportunity to get on the national scene, like the Reds in 2018, but the 2020 version has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. FFA put out the following statement on the cancellation of the competition. “Following extensive consultation with relevant stakeholders, Football Federation Australia has regrettably decided to cancel the 2020 instalments of both the FFA Cup and NPL National Finals Series due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant disruption to the Australian football calendar. The FFA Cup 2020 Preliminary Rounds have been suspended across the country and NPL/grassroots competitions are in different circumstances in each state. This, combined with uncertainty around travel restrictions and the reopening of borders across the country, means that the only option was to cancel both national competitions this year. Understandably this news will bring disappointment among Australia’s football community, particularly for the 765 FFA Cup participating clubs – the second highest number of club entries in the competition’s history. We look forward to continuing #TheMagicOfTheCup on 2021.”

Meanwhile, football’s new broadcast deal with Fox Sports no longer includes the FFA Cup and FFA chief executive James Johnson reaffirmed plans to deliver alternative broadcast plans in 2021. ““We aim to turn this current challenge into an opportunity,” he said. “The FFA Cup and NPL finals series must be optimised and enhanced to promote the offering and experience for traditional football fans whilst also appealing to a broader audience. In doing so, FFA will be able to explore innovative broadcast platforms to deliver these competitions to fans.”

8.7.2020

GLORY SKIPPER HOPING FOR WORLD CUP GROWTH IN THE GAME

Ever since the Australia / New Zealand joint Women’s World Cup bid for 2023 was given the nod by FIFA, there has been a buzz around the Women’s game, and even though it’s three years away, Perth Glory captain Natasha Rigby is already dreaming of the grassroots boost the Women’s World Cup will provide, and is hoping to see a domino effect in improvements from juniors all the way through to the W-League.

Rigby grow up playing the world game in Margaret River before moving north to Perth for university. She played State League for Queens Park, before being selected in the Glory squad and made her debut in 2018. She is hoping hosting the World Cup would have a trickle-down effect which extended to the regional areas. “Growing up in Margaret River, there wasn’t the development pathways there for young players that there potentially could be, so I think this will only help to put the spotlight on what we are providing our young boys and girls,” she told Perth Now.

“There will be such a focus on the World Cup itself, we’ll almost be forced to lift the standard of football that’s happening from the grassroots level all the way through to state league and all the way through to W-League. I hope that spotlight on those leagues will help to lift the quality of the league and the financial implications of it, hopefully there’ll be more funding towards more amateur competitions as well so that they can build and then that can only have a flow-on effect.”

She stepped into the captaincy role at Glory, following Sam Kerr’s move to Chelsea, and she started in all 12 games for the Glory and was a constant shining light in what was ultimately a disappointing campaign for the side. While the Glory skipper is yet to play for the Matildas, she said the chance to represent them on the world stage was more than enough motivation to last her until the tournament kicks off in July 2023.

“To be able to perform in front of your country, friends and family, those people that have been there to support your entire athletic career, will be such an amazing opportunity for those women and for us as a country to come together,” she said. “It’s so exciting for everybody who is a footballer at the moment and personally, it would be an incredible opportunity and it only fuels the fire to make you train harder and play better.”

6.7.2020

GLORY DETERMINED TO GO ONE BETTER SAYS FOXE

Perth assistant coach Hayden Foxe says Glory are determined to finish on a high and go one better than last season. Glory dominated the 2018/19 campaign, finishing first but losing the Grand Final on penalties to Sydney FC. But Foxe feels his team are in a good place to avenge that loss this time round.

"It’s tough, it takes a bit of time to digest and get over," Foxe said. "But that just makes the group and the coaching staff more determined to go one better. That’s definitely our goal. We want to be a team that’s challenging - not just a team that challenges one year and that’s it.

“The challenge is can we challenge and be up there year-on-year and be consistent like a Sydney FC and these bigger clubs. That’s the goal. That’s for all of us to try and be consistent, prepare, train, recover and do all the right things so we can continue to challenge for these titles."

Foxe has been impressed with how Glory players have looked after themselves during the COVID-19 hiatus. "It’s been good, we’ve been had a good response," the 43-year old said. "It’s been frustrating for everyone but everyone's been quiet positive because it’s something that’s our of your control.”

"All we asked the players during that time off that they weren’t allowed to come in and train as a group that, at any moment this pandemic looks like it could be over or finished, that you be ready to get back to training and ready to perform.”

"We can’t fault any of the players, the players have all come back in fantastic condition and they’ve got the right mindset going forward. It’s a positive (that we're back), it’s great that we get to finish the league. It would be been a bit of a devastation if we didn’t get to finish off the league, so it’s great."

Foxe, a former Socceroo, concedes the impact of the COVID-19 has been a good lesson to players just how lucky they are to be involved in professional football. "Something like this really hits home," he said. "It’s a good little lesson for the younger players coming through."

"As you get older as a player you kind of realise what football’s more about, how lucky you are and the experience you’ve had. The younger ones don’t realise understand it, but this is a good little example because it can be taken away from you … it’s a good learning lesson for the young ones that when it’s in my control don’t let it slip, don’t let it go."

5.7.2020

FINDING THE NEXT SAM KERR: THE NEXT WAVE OF WESTERN AUSTRALIAN FOOTBALL TALENT (courtesy ‘the West Australian’)

First there was the Sam Kerr effect. Then came the watershed moment for women’s soccer when Australia won the rights to host the 2023 World Cup with neighbours New Zealand. It’s heady stuff, boosting a game that, until Perth’s own Kerr and her Matildas took the country by storm, struggled for sustainability.

Hosting the World Cup in our backyard not only showcases women’s soccer talent from around the world but brings an unprecedented opportunity to build local support for the game. On pitches from Kingsway to Cockburn dreams will be played out. Grassroots, arguably the most important level of the game, is where stars are born - where the next Sam Kerr is waiting to be discovered.

But even before the cup announcement women’s soccer in Western Australia had seen remarkable growth with a 68 per cent participation increase from 2018-19. More than 36,000 women and girls now play the game Statewide. There was an 11 per cent growth nationally last year to 156,893 participants.

Two years ago Perth Glory decided to focus on young local talent and last season 14 of the club’s 21-strong squad were from WA. This weekend the women’s game takes another big step when the new WA National Premier League kicks off with senior and under-23 competitions.

Jamie Harnwell has seen the game’s popularity rise in his decade with Football West. “Grassroots competition, that’s where you find the next Sam Kerr and that’s why we must have a place for those girls to play,” said Harnwell, Glory’s record appearance holder with 256 games.

“Female football is the fastest growing segment of our game. The standard of football and skills we are producing continues to increase. We have been able to create new leagues from under-eight upwards. We are putting a complete pathway together for talent development.”

The new NPL tournament with eight teams includes the Football West academy under-17 side. “It’s a brand new initiative,” Harnwell said. “We want to ensure young female players have a pathway to go from clubs when they rock up at six, seven years of age all the way through to playing in the first team.

“We had a women’s premier league last year with six teams but we wanted to make it bigger and better and professionalise it a bit more. We have a full range of metropolitan and social teams but the NPL is the pinnacle for those who want to progress to the top level in the State.”

Harnwell is expecting a growth explosion and increased sponsorship and funding as the three-year cup countdown starts. “Straight away it’s an incentive for people to play the game. There is a clear vision of what a young girl can do on the world stage,” the Glory legend said.

“Football has that ability for someone like a Sam Kerr to go and be the best in the world, to travel the world, to have incredible experiences. It’s something that very few sports are able to provide. We’re expecting a huge influx of interest in funding and companies wanting to be involved with clubs and programs in the lead-up to the World Cup.”

However, Harnwell realises that Football West must look beyond the cup year. “Hopefully the legacy left after the cup will be an increase in facilities and all the rest that’s required to ensure the game is sustainable for the future,” he said.

“It’s important for us to be able to support clubs, make sure their facilities are suitable, that there are adequate training options, not like 15-20 years ago where the women would get the far corner of the pitch with the bad lights. We have to make sure they are a valued part of not only playing but also refereeing, coaching and have club committee representation.”

Five WA girls who have progressed through local pathways and are also in the Glory system - Hana Lowry, Isabella Wallhead, Miranda Templeman and Taneesha Baker, all 17, and 15-year old Tijan McKenna. All played for the Junior Matildas in the 2019 AFC under-16 Women’s Championship in Thailand.

Lowry, Australia’s player of the tournament, started playing as a 7-year old with her brother at Cockburn. She has already made an impact on the W-League, scoring with a terrific header in her Glory starting debut against Newcastle Jets last season. “That was a dream come true,” Lowry said.

But she has a bigger dream - making the Matildas and following the path of other WA star strikers like Kerr and Lisa De Vanna, the national team’s all-time top scorer. She has had a taste of international experience, playing in Thailand and also for the Junior Matildas in Laos and the Pacific Islands. “It’s been amazing,” she said.

Lowry, a member of the Football West academy side that will play in the new NPL competition, juggles school work with five nights a week training, one day off and a game at the weekend. “I just always wanted to play and my family and my brother have helped me so much,” she said.

She has seen how much work is needed to get to the top after training with Kerr at Perth Glory before she left for Chelsea. “You realise how much hard work she has put in and what you have to do to get where she has,” Lowry said. “The World Cup will be great. It gives you something to aim at but even if you can’t play, just watching the games, watching the players will be fantastic.”

Bobby Despotovski, who has coached the Glory W-League side for five years, believes there is another Sam Kerr waiting in WA. “Absolutely, 100 per cent. There is another Sam Kerr out there,” said Despotovski, Glory’s greatest scorer with 129 goals. “I believe that but we need to work hard and give opportunities to the young players.”

Despotovski also believes that losing the best players to European leagues, where they cannot come back to play in Australia in their off-season, has a beneficial flip-side. “It’s good because the local leagues can introduce the younger generation of players who might not have had a chance if players like the Matildas came back to play,” he said.

“It opens up much more opportunity for the younger players. This is the perfect opportunity for our young players. Now they have to take it. If you have the talent and don’t get the chance to play in our leagues how the hell are you going to develop?”

Jessine Bonzas, Despotovski’s assistant coach, is particularly well qualified to talk about the growth of the women’s game. She played for State teams for 20 years from the age of 12, captained the senior side and has coached at every level from five-year-olds upwards.

“Where is the next Sam coming from? They could come from anywhere. That’s the beauty of football,” Bonzas said. “There are the formal pathways but you’ll find your little Sam Kerrs kicking around with the boys, like Hana did, already out there playing and having fun.”

“We’ve got a massively talented group of young payers and they can push for the World Cup. They might be a little bit young but Sam made her Matildas debut as a 15-year-old so who’s too say they can’t dream of doing the same. Having the World Cup here in Australia will be a game changer for these girls. It gives them purpose.”

There was no such opportunity when Bonzas was playing. “When I was coming through there was one junior State team and a senior State team. That was pretty much it,” she said. “In my time if you wanted to go beyond the state team and into the Matildas you had to go interstate. There are so many more opportunities today.”

Part of the ambitious plan to transform soccer in Australia, unveiled this week in a 56-page manifesto, includes Football Federation Australia’s desire for the W-League to be a top-five competition worldwide and the Matildas to be Olympic or World Cup champions before 2035.

FFA chief executive James Johnson said Australia was known to be strong in the women’s game but could see an improvement in the global power of the W-League and investing heavily to lure the world’s best players to the competition.

“It’s affordable now to buy players, it’s an opportunity,” Johnson said. “I think players would love to come to Australia because we have a fantastic country, we have the women’s World Cup. The clubs are going to have to invest, but there is an opportunity for us to be one of the best leagues in the world, and that’s where we should be aiming for the W-League.”

5.7.2020

BELT UP AMATEUR LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION - ROUND THREE REVIEW

It was another action-packed round of football in the Belt-Up Amateur Premier Division, and our Match of the Round didn’t disappoint with Joondalup United maintaining their perfect start to the season with a hard fought 2-1 win against Wembley Downs at Beldon Park. The hosts got off to a great start when, in the fifth minute, a corner dropped to Mark Walsh on the penalty spot and he acrobatically volleyed the ball into the roof of the net. Rowdy Yates fired over from a tight angle as JUFC looked to extend the lead, but they were undone at the other end on 24 minutes. Goalkeeper Luke Green made a superb save to keep out an effort from a free kick and from the resulting long throw from Jury Galba, some slack marking allowed Lauchie Chamberlain to equalise from close range.

Tony Taylor came close to restoring the lead just before the break with a 30-yard strike that flew inches over the crossbar. Nine minutes into the second half it was 2-1 to Joondalup. Tony Taylor picked out Yates with a cross and the winger cut inside before finishing low into the bottom corner with his right foot. Joondalup had chances to extend the lead with Adam Buckley and Yates denied by some excellent goalkeeping, while a goal bound effort from Adam Giannasi was deflected wide. Wembley pushed for another leveler and hit the post in the closing stages, but Joondalup saw out the rest of the game to seal the points. “It was a pleasing result against a side that beat us twice last year, and we knew going into the game that they would be tough to break down. We’ve started well in all three games so far but go through spells where we make things difficult for ourselves, letting the opposition back into the contest,” Joondalup Head Coach Neil Sherwin explained.

“We came close on a couple of occasions to getting a third goal that would have killed off the game and rode our luck a bit when Wembley struck the woodwork late on. Overall though we created plenty of chances and looked solid at the back for most of the game. There’s very little between most of the sides in the Premier Division so it’s important to grind out some wins and we’ve done that a couple of times already this year.” Wembley coach Mike Ford said it was a great game. “It was a good game between two competitive teams, but in the end, we just couldn’t come up with the equaliser,” he said. “Despite hitting the post and seeing a diving heading just go wide. Joondalup also had their chances, encouraging signs for Wembley with a mostly new squad for 2020.”

North Perth United maintained their unbeaten start to the season, but were pushed all the way by Quinns, eventually running out 1-0 winners. The only goal of the game came five minutes into the second half, with Stephan Foolchund on target. “It was a pleasing and very well deserved three points for the boys. I thought we applied ourselves really well over the full 90 minutes which is a first for us this year,” North Perth Head Coach Alex Carter said. “We continued to try play ball all game and never went into our shells once. At times the way we counter attacked was very easy on the eye. A little bit more composure in the box and we could have had a few more. It cost us last week not being ruthless but the boys dug in well this week to keep the clean sheet.”

Hamersley Rovers are also still unbeaten and like North Perth were made to work for the three points edging out Queens Park 3-2 at Carine Open Space. The visitors were behind after only seven minutes. A high defensive line was caught out when a perfectly timed run from Liam Hudson breeched it, and raced away and finished into the bottom corner. It was 2-0 on 24 minutes, a cleverly quick taken free kick caught Queens Park napping to allow Declan Hudson free on the edge of the penalty area who fired a fierce drive into the top corner.

But the visitors hit back after just after half time. A quick break down the left by Leigh Bridger, saw him beat two players and playing in Abe Toana, who held off his marker and fired home on the turn. They then levelled on the hour, Brian Kiprop skipped past his defender and crossed into the box, and Bridger volleyed home. But it was Hamersley who won it on 74 minutes, combination play on the left and a quick switch of play put Hudson in behind the defence who showed great composure to clinically finish across the keeper. “Our expressive style of play continues to create chances however our conversion rate needs to be better,” Rovers’ Head Coach Howard Tweats said. “As a collective we were disappointed with our second half performance, which was the worst half of a game we’ve played so far and well below the standard we have set for ourselves.”

Leeming Strikers bounced back from defeat at Wembley last week by edging out Kwinana United 2-1 at John Connell Reserve. All the action in this one was late and it was Kwinana who hit the front on 73 minutes. A great ball from Neal Beveridge picked out Jake Daley to head home. But the home side hit back seven minutes later, when Andy Jennings was pushed going up for a header and Tom Grant stepped up to put penalty away. Leeming won it five minutes later a cross from Paulo Coelho found Ben Greaves at the back post who headed in. “It was a real arm wrestle yesterday, both sides didn't give up a lot throughout the whole game,” Leeming Head Coach David Palin said.

“When Kwinana took the lead, I thought it was going to be another day like last week. The only thing that allowed us to get back into game was a little bit more fitness than them and a bit of luck through pressure, the game deserved a draw and Kwinana will definitely feel they even let three points dropped after being ahead, so too walk away with three points after last week, we couldn't be happier.” Kwinana Head Coach Mark Purvis thought they deserves something from the game. “We played well and I didn’t think we deserved to lose that game,” he said. “But Leeming are a good side and sometimes that’s how football goes.”

UWA Nedlands also bounced back from defeat against Kwinana last week beating Maddington White City 5-2 at the UWA Sports Park. The hosts were ahead on 16 minutes, Lawrence Lewis firing home from close-range, after the Maddington keeper had pushed a shot onto the crossbar. It was 2-0 five minutes later, Jack Naumann was sent deep down the right, beating two players and cutting it back to Lewis to finish into the empty net. Lewis completed his hat-trick just after the half hour, with a cracking free kick from 20 meters. But Maddington hit back after the break, with a double from Ramos. But their comeback ended there and Jack Naumann scored a fourth for UWA after Frazer Childs beat two defenders and played him in on goal to score. They added a fifth nine minutes from time Lewis’ cross finding Naumann to score. “It was a great to bounce back after last week’s defeat against Kwinana with some excellent football played and some great goals scored,” UWA Head Coach Arthur Hiemstra said. “We sought to limit the impact of their striker, who’s absolutely quality, in which we largely succeeded. Conceding two goals early in the second half brought some of the suspense back but our fourth and fifth put the game to bed.”

In the final game Jaguars won for the first time this season beating South West Phoenix 4-2 at Herb Graham Recreation Centre. The hosts opened brightly and were ahead on 12 minutes, Paul Sopp wriggled his way past two defenders to fire home. They added a second on 38 minutes, a free kick found Malek Domköc and he volleyed home. Jags thought they had a third before half time when Kuol Raik header was aiming for the top corner, but Jamie Oakley produced a stunning save to deny him. The visitors pulled one back on 54 minutes, with Jayden Prosser on target, and they levelled on 77 minutes with Prosser adding his second from a free kick. It looked like Phoenix would go on and win it but the Jags had other ideas, and Luqman Abdirahman raced through and squared the ball to Sopp and with the goal at his mercy he shot wide. But Sopp made up for that miss when he made it 3-2 five minutes from time, racing clear to score. The points were wrapped up in stoppage time when Sopp turned provider, cutting the ball back to Akuei Guot to make it 4-2.

4.7.2020

ALL SQUARE IN NPLWA OPENER

A late goal from Bayswater City striker Luke Salmon has given Bayswater City a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Italian rivals Perth SC on Friday at Frank Drago Reserve, in the opening game of the rescheduled 2020 NPL WA. The visitors had hit the front in the first half with Jayden Gorman on target, and it looked like the home side had blown the points after missing a number of chances, but Salmon spared their blushes with a stunning free kick from the edge of the box. “I felt that we controlled most of the game and if we took our chances early it could’ve been a different result,” Salmon said. “But the lads dug deep and we pulled our sleeves up to the final minute and come away with the draw.”

It was a typical derby, and although both sides looked rusty after the lay-off, the visitors had keeper Ryan Montgomery to thank for keeping them in the game. The WA State keeper produced a great save to deny Gordon Smith’s effort, and was up quick to thwart Daryl Nicol from the rebound. Moments later the Perth custodian was in the action again, this time he got down to thwart Dean Cummings, before Salmon put the rebound over the top.

Perth were struggling in the final third, their best chance fell to Gorman, whose free kick was deflected on to a post, but on the stroke of half time it was the visitors who hit the front. Defender Bojan Radinovic played the ball down the right which freed Yagoub Mustafa, he raced past his marker and squared the ball to Gorman who made no mistake to send Perth into the break with the lead.

The visitors looked to put the game to bed after the break and Michael Domfeh saw his effort fly over the top after being picked out by the impressive Mustafa. Devon Spence was then alert to save Sasa Njegis’s free kick, and he then produced a stunning save to deny second half substitute Lee Morgan, before Mustafa blazed over with the goal at his mercy.

Bayswater were pushing late for the equaliser and it finally arrived on 90 minutes. Gomo Dukuly found Nicol on the edge of the box and he was brought down by Radinovic, and from the resulting free kick Salmon curled the ball around the wall into the bottom corner of the net giving Montgomery no chance. The home side had a chance to win it deep into stoppage time, Declan Hughes picked out Jason Mirco and his ball across the box was missed by Nicol at the back post.

Bayswater City 1 (Salmon 90’) Perth SC 1 (Gorman 42’)

Bayswater City: GK Devon SPENCE, 3 Jack ALLEN, 5 David STOKOE, 6 Todd HOWARTH, 7 Daryl NICOL, 12 Steven HESKETH (14 Gomo DUKULY 60’), 19 Gordon SMITH (10 Jason MIRCO 60’), 22 Luke SALMON, 26 Zayd FARAH, 27 Declan HUGHES, 29 Dean CUMMINGS (9 Gustavo GIRON-MARULANDA 81’) - Subs not used: 11 Ryan PEARSON,

Perth SC: GK Ryan MONTGOMERY, 2 Alex SILLA (16 Keiron COLWELL 46’), 3 Jordon DE LEO, 4 Thomas SOUTHGATE, 7 Alek JOVIC (14 Jawad REZAI 90’), 10 Michael DOMFEH, 12 Jackson MORGAN (13 Leigh MORGAN 78’), 15 Sasa NJEGIC, 19 Bojan RADINOVIC, 20 Jayden GORMAN, 22 Yagoub MUSTAFA – Subs not used: RGK Jackson LEE, 12 Daniel MACKENZIE – Referee Matthew Southern

4.7.2020

ECU EDGE OUT TEN MAN COCKBURN

ECU Joondalup have started the rescheduled 2020 NPL WA season with a hard-fought 2-0 win against Cockburn City at the ECU Football Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Danny Hodgson gave the home side the lead from the penalty spot on 36 minutes, but the visitors were then reduced to ten men with Ashley Rosindale sent off. The ten men lifted and had plenty of chances to level, including a penalty, which Jacks keeper Johnny Perkins saved. The points were wrapped up late with Andy Higgins scoring to send the Jacks supporters home happy.

Cockburn looked lively early, and Rosindale blazed over from close-range, before Perkins got down well to deny Rosindale moments later. But on 36 minutes, against the run of play, the Jacks hit the front. A ball into the penalty found Hodgson, who was bundled over by Breckan Baker, and referee Josh Mannella pointed straight to the spot. Hodgson picked himself up and sent the keeper the wrong way to convert the resulting penalty to give the Jacks the lead.

It went from bad to worse for Cockburn and six minutes later Rosindale was sent off. The home side ended the half the better and when Brooks found Hodgson on the edge of the penalty area, the strikers shot whistled inches over the top. Moments later Hodgson’s powerful shot was pushed away by Cockburn keeper Luke Radonich, and at the break the Jacks held a 1-0 lead.

The Jacks were on the front foot early in the second half and Evans’ effort from close-range was blocked and cleared, before Evans turned provider on the hour, teeing up Hodgson whose shot was well saved by the alert Radonich. But Cockburn weren’t going away and they started to get on top with skipper Cameron Edwards and former Perth Glory defender Riley Woodcock prominent.

Then on 68 minutes they were given a lifeline when Shane Cassidy brought down Ryan Platt and the referee pointed to the spot. Kristian Santich stepped up but Perkins guessed the right way to save his spot kick. Cockburn were now well on top and it was backs to the wall for Kenny Lowe’s side, with Cassidy and Lowry outstanding at the heart of the defence, while Perkins did well at his near post to save Woodcock’s curling free kick.

But with Cockburn pushing men forward the Jacks caught them out deep into stoppage time to seal the three points. A quick free kick from Evans found Warland down the left, he cut the ball back to Higgins who raced forward and finished with a great strike from the edge of the penalty area, giving Radonich no chance.

ECU Joondalup 2 (Hodgson 36’ pen, Higgins 90+4’) Cockburn City 0

ECU Joondalup – GK Johnny PERKINS, 4 Riley WARLAND, 5 Ryan LOWRY, 6 Sam RIAK (11 Harry EVANS 9’), 7 Danny HODGSON, 10 Andy HIGGINS, 12 Callum TIMMINS, 13 Tommy AMPHLETT (9 Bayley BROWN-MONTGOMERY 62’), 14 Ethan BROOKS (8 Tom HOUGH 73’), 16 Shane CASSIDY, 18 Luke BODNAR – Subs not used – 2 Luke RHODES, 3 Ross MILLARD

Cockburn City – GK Luke RADONICH, 5 Julian TELES, 7 Ashley ROSINDALE, 8 Cameron EDWARDS, 10 David ARAYA (17 Fanal DEWIT 68’), 15 Daniel SANTICH, 18 Adam ANFUSO (12 Ryan PRATT 17’), 21 Jesse LAZZARO, 22 Kristian SANTICH, 23 Riley WOODCOCK, 25 Breckan BAKER – Subs not used: RGK Ben RADONICH, 2 Chris THACKRAY, 3 Daniel DOLS - Red Cards: Rosindale 41’ - Referee Josh MANNELLA

4.7.2020

ITALIANO GIVES INGLEWOOD A POINT

In our ‘Match of the Round’ Gwelup Croatia had to settle for a point in 1-1 draw against Inglewood United, in their first ever home NPLWA game at Wishart Street. Former Inglewood striker Ndumba Makeche had given Taki Nicolaidis’ side the lead on the hour, but Brendan Italiano spoilt the party gabbing the equaliser 14 minutes from time. The game ended on sour note for the hosts when second half substitute Kian McGuigan was sent off in stoppage time.

“Definitely disappointed with the result. I thought we kept the ball well and dictated the tempo of the game, and we had a good few half chances but we struggled to generate any real chances that could have got us the points we deserved,” Gwelup defender Ciaran Salinger said. “Our game panned our very similar to the first round of the Night Series - Inglewood were fine with sitting behind the ball and trying to break on the counter, but I thought we lacked quality with our final balls in the final third of the pitch. But plenty of positives we can take from the game and plenty of things to work on this week.”

It was a historic day for the home side and they had plenty of possession, but Inglewood were solid at the back and clear-cut chances were few and far between. But after the break there were chances at both ends. First Inglewood defender Mark Barnett curled a free kick on to a post, before Jon Stynes saw his free kick flash inches wide moments later for the home side. But it was the home side who opened the scoring on 64 minutes. Inglewood gave the ball away in the middle of the park and Daniel Stynes sent Makeche away, Inglewood keeper Alex Dunn came racing out and got nowhere near the ball and the former Sarawak and Felda United striker calmly played the ball past him and into the net to set off wild celebrations. The home side had a chance to double their lead when Hasani Sinclair raced clear one-on-one with Dunn, but his lob went over the top.

But the home supporters joy didn’t last long and 12 minutes later Inglewood found the equaliser. A long clearance from Dunn eventually found Italiano on the right of the penalty area. He still had a lot of work to do, and he cut inside and unleashed a powerful shot that beat Connor Campbell at his near post. Both sides pressed for the winner but it wasn’t to be and both had to settle for a share of the spoils. “I think the boys did well for our first game back considering we had no scratch matches before the season started,” Italiano explained. “I thought defensively we were very good, going forward it was quick and direct. Gwelup play some great football and we’re very good defensively as well, so all up it was a 50, 50 match and I can’t wait for round two.”

Gwelup Croatia 1 Makeche (64) Inglewood United: 1 Italiano (76)

Gwelup Croatia: GK Connor CAMPBELL, 2 Ciaran SALINGER, 5 Blair GOVAN, 6 Declan HARGREAVES, 8 Jon STYNES, 10 Daniel STYNES, 11 Ndumba MAKECHE (9 David HEAGNEY 69’), 12 Hasani SINCLAIR, 13 Rocco PIZZATA (4 Andrew SCALDAFERRO 87’), 14 Shubham MOKALA (23 Kian MCGUIGAN 87’), 20 Sam MITCHINSON – Subs not used: RGK Aidan HOLLOWAY, 88 Bobby WILSON – Red Card - McGuigan 93’

Inglewood United: GK Alex DUNN, 2 Alex ISHIDA-LIVINGS, 4 Scott BLACKMORE, 5 Thiak KUEL, 6 Adam FALCONE (8 Jason BARRERA 74’), 10 Anthony BAFOBUSHA, 12 Brendan ITALIANO, 13 Jordan ALLEN-RANA (74’) 19 Brodie LANGAN, 16 Jamie MURPHY, 17 Mark BARNETT, 23 Robert PETKOV – Subs not used: RGK Josiah GODFREY, 11 Toby ROBERTSON – Referee: Steven Gregory

4.7.2020

TEECE HITS FOUR AS GULLS THRASH ROCKINGHAM

Sorrento started the new NPLWA season with a bang, thrashing Rockingham City 6-1 at SafeRad Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Gulls striker Cameron Teece was the hero bagging four goals to seal the comprehensive win. Daniel Faichney and Ollie Annis added the other goals for Jamie Harnwell side while Sam Foster scored the home sides consolation goal. “I thought we played really well, and we were up 2-0 at half time deservedly so,” Teece explained. “When they had a man sent off, we took complete control and put the game to bed from then. The only disappointing thing was not keeping clean sheet was a sloppy goal from us switching off.”

It wasn’t the best of starts for new Rockingham coach Gary Christie with Daniel Faichney’s long-range shot deflecting off a Rockingham defender to open the scoring. It was 2-0 five minutes later, Annis was brought down on the edge of the box and Teece fired into the top corner of the net, and Jamie Harnwell’s side held that lead at the break. Rockingham needed a good start to the second half to get back into the game but five minutes in they were reduced to ten men with skipper Lydon Hodgkiss shown a second yellow card by referee David Bruce for hauling down Teece. To make matters worse Teece dispatched the resulting free kick around the wall and into the bottom corner to make it 3-0.

Teece turned provider for the fourth laying the ball into the path of Annis, and the former ECU Joondalup midfielder finished clinically. Things went from bad to worse for the home side when they were reduced to nine men with Michael Farmer also shown a second yellow card by the referee. Sorrento went in for the kill and Teece completed his hat-trick on 82 minutes. He was sent in one-on-one with the keeper and finished low into the corner of the net to make it 5-0.

The home fans had something to cheers four minutes from time when Sam Foster finished well after cutting in from the left. But Sorrento weren’t finished and Teece added his fourth to finish the rout. Tim Hill’s ball sent the striker clear and he beat his marker and finished with aplomb to seal a great day for the Gulls.

Rockingham City 1 (Foster 86’) Sorrento 6 (O’G 23’, Teece 28’, 52’, 82’, 87’, Annis 55’)

Rockingham City: GK STOUT, 2 SNELSON, 3 MORT, 7 POTTIER, 10 COLLINS, 13 HODGKISS, 14 KENNEDY, 16 NG, 18 FARMER, 19 YUMANGE, 20 HANCOCK – Subs: 8 FOSTER, 12 COLLINS, 15 AQUINO. 21 BURGER – Red Cards: Hodgkiss 51’, Farmer 75’

Sorrento: GK GHARSALLAH, 3 PRAJZA, 5 TOUGH, 7 MORGAN, 9 TEECE, 10 ANNIS, 11HIL, 18 BROWN, 19 TEMATA. 21 FAICHNEY, 22 COLLI – Subs: RGK GIUDICATTI, 4 KILKELLY, 6 AJAN, 8 STEVENS, 20 BEZDEK – Referee: David Bruce

4.7.2020

ATHENA TOO GOOD FOR ARMADALE

Floreat Athena were pushed all the way before beating Armadale 3-1 in their opening NPLWA fixture of the season at E&D Litis Stadium. Ante Kovacevic’s side were ahead at the break with Noah Shamaki on target. But the Reds were level early in the second half when Floreat keeper Jason Saldaris spilled a corner into his own net. But John O’Reilly’s side we’re behind again on 75 minutes when Nicholas Ambrogio scored and with the visitors pushing for an equaliser, they were caught out again in stoppage time with Liam Murray adding a third to seal the points.

“Armadale is always a difficult game for us, as they like to sit deep and play on the counter and are very hard to breakdown,” Floreat defender Dennis Galan said. “But we’ve been working all week on being patient with the ball and trying to move it around quick to create opportunities, which eventually paid off. It’s a good to start the season with three points, and to be back playing competitive football once again, with the boys”

Floreat and Armadale had good results in the last week of preseason games and it was the home side who opened the scoring in this one just after the half hour. It looked like Floreat should have a free kick but the referee played on and Phil Arnold picked out Shamaki who fired past Cyril Sharrock at his near post. That goal gave the hosts the lead at the break.

But two minutes into the second half Armadale were handed an equaliser. Brian Patterson’s in swinging corner was dropped by the usual reliable Jason Saldaris, the ball rolling over the line, to the embarrassment of the Floreat custodian. But the keeper was happy when Floreat regained the lead 14 minutes from time. Second half substitute Ludovic Boi’s long ball caught Armadale square at the back and Ambrogio raced clear and finished. Armadale pushed men forward looking for the equaliser and in fifth minute of stoppage time Floreat added a third. Boi found Ambrogio down the right and he found Murray, who turned his marker superbly in the box and roll ed the ball past Sharrock to seal the points.

Floreat Athena 3 (Shamaki 33’, Ambrogio 76’, Murray 90+4’) Armadale 1 J. Saldaris O’G 47’)

Floreat Athena: GK Jason SALDARIS, 5 N TSHONGO, 6 Jesse FULLER, 9 B SHAMAKI, 10 Nick AMBROGIO, 11 Denis GALAN, 15 Chris SALDARIS, 17 Dean EVANS, 18 Phil ARNOLD, 19 Liam MURRAY, 20 A PALMER – Subs not used: RGK Jordan BARBAS, 4 B STEELE 13 G FESTA, 14 Ludovic BOI, 32 Robert HARDING

Armadale: GK Cyril SHARROCK, 3 Harry QUIGLEY, 4 Nathan COSTELLO, 7 Josh CORTES, 8 Brian PATTERSON, 9 Angel ANDRES, 10 Roberto SOARES, 12 Dannie RICHMAN, 13 Blake ADAMS, 14 Sebastian STENQVIST, 23 Friday ZICO – Subs not used: RGK Sam HUTCHINGS, 2 Matt WORTON, 15 Charlie KENNA, 17 Pat SARA, 20 Pieter JACOBSZ

4.7.2020

GLORY YOUNGSTER FIGHT BACK FOR A POINT

Perth Glory have started their NPLWA season with a come-from-behind 1-1 draw against Balcatta at Grindleford Reserve on Saturday afternoon. Adam Zimarino had given Bobby Taneski’s side an early lead, but Bryce Bafford scored on the hour to give Richard Garcia’s side a well-deserved point. “It was a highly competitive game, and very encouraging to see us show the resilience to fight back after going a goal down early,” Glory keeper Sam Reilly said. “It was also a very frustrating game for a goalkeeper as a split-second decision cost us the goal. I think both sides will be disappointed only coming away with a point as both teams played very good football and had chances to win.”

The hosts made a great start to this one and were ahead on eight minutes. A through ball sent Zimarino clear, and Glory keeper Reilly could see the danger, but was unable to get to the ball as he came rushing out and the striker finished rounded him and finished well. Both sides had chances in an entertaining game but it was the visitors who levelled on the hour. A great diagonal ball from Joseph Forde found the overlapping Jack Painter-Andrew. He laid the ball to skipper Giordano Colli he found Bafford and he found the back of the net to earn them a point.

Balcatta and former midfielder Glory Youth Jack Leech said there were some good positives to take from the game. “I thought the game was a great first hit out for us, we knew what to expect with Glory and we went into the game with a game plan and I thought we carried it out very well,” he explained. “We defended very well and made it difficult for them to get any kind of clear-cut chances, we also had an opportunity to pinch the three points for ourselves but unfortunately couldn’t take it. But plenty of positives to be taken out of the game and we look forward to a different kind of challenge next week against Armadale.”

Balcatta 1 Zimarino 8’ Perth Glory 1 - Bafford 59’

Balcatta: GK Riley STEPHENSON, 2 Joseph MARINO, 4 Calum O’CONNELL, 5 John KEARNEY, 6 Alex CASTIELO, 7 Callum STOCKS (9 Chris BREEN 56’), 8 Jack LEECH, 10 Jon CORNESS, 11 Michael ZIMARINO, 14 Adam TONG, 16 Adam ZIMARINO, 17 Henry DURR (13 Anthony TOPINI 81’) – Subs not used: RGK Riccardo MAZZOLENI, 3 Roberto DEL BORRELLO

Perth Glory: GK Sam REILLY, 2 Hristijan JANKULOSKI (15 Jacob MUIR 53’), 3 Jack PAINTER-ANDREWS, 4 Aiden COYNE, 5 Mason TATFU, 6 Aiki TSUKAMOTO, 7 Joseph FORDE (16 SNOWDEN 65’), 8 Aidan EDWARDS (17 Chris DONNELL 74’), 10 Giordano COLLI, 11 Charlie LEECH, 19 Bryce BAFFORD (14 Albert FULLARD 74’) – Subs not used: 12 WHITE - Referee - Arvin Shanmuganathan

4.7.2020

STATE LEAGUE DIVISION ONE, ROUND ONE – REVIEW

The opening round of the Football West State League Division One saw newly promoted Quinn’s travel to Macedonia Park to take on Stirling Lions in our ’Match of the Round’. It was Ian Ferguson’s side first appearance in the division and they left happy edging out the hosts 1-0. The only goal of the game came on 11 minutes when Richard Howles was brought down in the penalty area by Lions keeper Luke Stonebridge and referee Stewart Beattie pointed to the spot. New signing Sam Wynne took responsibility and scored from the resulting penalty. The Lions pressed for the equaliser, but they found Quinns keeper James Bosdet in sparkling form, his best a stunner to deny Scott McDonald’s header from a corner. “This is the first time Quinn’s have played in Division One so we are delighted with our first win especially away to Stirling,” he said. “We rode our luck at times and James’ save was outstanding, and still don’t who he managed to get to it.”

There was an entertaining game at Kingsway Reserve where hosts Olympic Kingsway ran out 2-1 winners against Mandurah City. The hosts were ahead on 25 minutes, Ajak Riak’s first time volley from just inside the box gave the keeper no chance. They doubled their lead on 70 minutes, Gyles Davies played in Elliott Tattersall, who rounded the keeper and slotted the ball home. Olympic Head Coach Gary Williams said his undermanned side performed well. “Delighted with the result as had to utilize the squad due to six players being unavailable for varying reasons,” he said. “The lads showed great character during the 90 minutes and for the most part we were reasonably comfortable and created a number of opportunities.”

Mandurah reduced the margin with five minutes to go with David Stockdale on target, but they couldn’t find the equaliser. Coach Kris Donnell was pleased with the way his side played on the day. “The boys started off really well and could have took the lead early on, but I feel we struggled to break a very well organised Kingsway down,” he explained. “Possession wise we could have held onto the ball a bit longer and been a bit more patient but it’s early doors we have a brand-new team here and the signs are really positive so we will focus on Stirling now and get the boys prepared for what will be another tough game.”

Joondalup United started the revamped season with a big 4-1 win against Ashfield at Ashfield Reserve. The visitors were ahead when Jamie Gibson scored from the penalty spot after Jamie Gardiner had been upended. But the hosts hit back and Hamish Van Dieken levelled on the half hour and it was all-square at the break. But Joondalup hit the front again early in the second half, Jay Lang scoring with a trademark thunderbolt. Lang added his second and Joondalup’s third on 71 minutes and Jamie Gibson scored the fourth with a long-range screamer. Joondalup Head Coach Nick Jennings said they took their chances well. “I felt we were the better team throughout the game on a difficult pitch and scored some quality goals,” he said. “Ashfield have some very talented young boys and will trouble teams this season, but our experience and quality in the final third was the big difference.”

Cameron Lord started his rein at Fremantle City with a 3-1 win against Subiaco at Hilton Park. Riley van Dieken opened the scoring for Fremantle, after an initial save the ball was parried, he was quickest to the rebound to score from five meters. Abias Bukuru scored the second after a scramble in the box, and Egide Ngendakumana scored the final goal, taking on two defenders on the left before firing the ball low and hard into the bottom right corner. “It was a great way to start the season after some difficult results during the mini pre-season,” Lord explained. “We have always believed in ourselves and our quality, and knew we would start to be rewarded with performances once we got more minutes in legs. We were more clinical today in front of goal than in previous weeks, and we will be working hard to ensure that continues to improve.”

Graham Normanton’s Forrestfield United kicked off the season with a 3-1 win against UWA Nedlands at Hartfield Park. The home side found themselves behind on 18 minutes with Max Walton scoring, and it was a frustrating opening 45 minutes for Forrestfield. But after the break they started to take control. They levelled on 55 minute, Mitch Crocker intercepted a pass and played Ben Wantee through and he beat the centre back and tucked it in the bottom corner. They hit the front ten minutes later, Rhys Loxley and Vlad Naumovski played a neat one-two and Loxley who finished at the second attempt. The points were wrapped up on 80 minutes when Jordan Hart’s cross was turned into his own net by a UWA defender. “I feel they scored against the run of play and that put us off our rhythm a bit in the first half,” Crocker said. “In the second half we took control and it showed in the goals we scored because they were great team goals. We'd also like to give UWA's Max Welton all our best wishes for his recovery from his unfortunate injury.”

In the final game Western Knights continued their preseason form by thrashing Swan United 4-0 at Francis Street. The Knights opened the scoring after only five minutes, Andrija Jukic sent Jon Chalmers clear and he scored past Nick Stone. The made it 2-0 on 20 minutes with Adam Harris slotting home after Stone spilled a corner. It was 3-0 on 71 minutes Dean Hurley’s shot was well saved by Stone but Jukic was quickest to the rebound to score. They put the icing on the cake in the final minute when they added a fourth, Jake Sardelic getting on the end of cross and volleying home. “For us it was a very solid team performance against a Swan side that I thought were impressive,” Knights Head Coach Ivan Zuvela said. “We were pleased to start the season with a good away win.”

4.7.2020

STATE LEAGUE DIVISION TWO, ROUND ONE – REVIEW

In Football West State League Division Two our Match of the Round’ saw Kingsley Westside historic first ever game in state league football end in defeat after an Alec Robinson goal on the hour gave Wanneroo City a 1-0 win at Chichester Park on Saturday evening. The visitors did the hard way going down to ten men after Ashley Corker was shown a red card by referee Stephen Knight on the half hour. But the home side couldn’t make their advantage count and on 69 minutes they were also reduced to ten men with Ryan Williams given a second yellow card. Wanneroo made them pay scoring sixty seconds later, Shakeel Alexander found Robinson in the middle of the park, and he raced forward and unleashed a shot that dipped just under the crossbar to win it.

“It was a very tough game as we expected from start to finish,” Wanneroo Head Coach Jesse Bridgeman said. “Both teams had good chances and defended really well so we knew the first goal would be important and luckily it went our way, to have a game like that to kick start the season for us was just what we needed.” Kingsley Westside Head Coach Steven Dimitrovich said it was a good game. “I thought it was a very good game for our first state league game,” he said. “I thought we were unlucky not come away with a point but that’s football and the goal that won the game would’ve been worthy of winning any game. “With with two red cards and plenty of yellow cards the game didn’t disappoint in the physical aspect but once the final whistle went it was all left on the field we now move onto Kelmscott and see if we can grab our first state league points

It was an emotional day at Grandis Park on Saturday afternoon when Carramar Shamrock Rovers came from two goals down to beat Dianella White Eagles 3-2. There was a minute’s silence before kick-off for Carramar Shamrock Rovers player Michael Harben, who sadly passed away tragically earlier in the year. The home side looked out of sorts early and Dianella rushed to a two-goal lead. First Asa Sippits fired home before Leslie Mari added a second, and it looked a long-way back for the hosts. But Gerry McKwen’s side hit back and Pat Morrison scored from close range, and it was 2-2 on 35 minutes, Nathan Diaz scoring from a rebound. Both sides pressed for the winner after the break, but it was the home side that found it on 78 minutes, Diaz scoring his second to win it. “It was a very emotional day for us and to have Michael’s family and friends here to watch and we presented his Dad with a framed jersey after the game and he was delighted we won,” Ger Fitzgerald said. “Every single one of the lads put in an incredible effort and it was great we won to honour Michael and his friends and family that were there to watch. It shows the fighting spirit we have and never say die attitude. Very happy with yesterday’s performance and look forward to next week. RIP Michael Harben.”

Joondalup City took their good preseason form into the opening league game after beating Balga 2-0 at Iluka Sports Complex. In a scrappy and even game, Joondalup went ahead early in the second half when Luke Doyle made space down the left and played a great ball into Jonny Hulme who made no mistake. Balga had the chance to equalise on the hour when they were rewarded a penalty after a push in the box, but Dejan Andric missed from the spot. Balga kept up the pressure and had chances to get back into the game. Joondalup wrapped up the points with a late goal from Harry Clisby, when his long range shot flew into the net. “Overall, I was very pleased with the performance, although Balga did miss a penalty,” Joondalup Coach Nigel Smith said. “But we dominated the game and possession and if our final ball in the last third had been better, and also our finishing, we would have scored more goals as the game opened up in the second half.”

Murdoch University Melville new coach Danny Ciampini got off to a good start with a hard fought 2-1 win against Curtin University at Murdoch Uni. MUM performed well early but found themselves behind at half time, a quick counter-attack on 33 minutes saw Ricky Saini score. The host brought on Declan Tanna on at half time and his impact was immediate. In the 63rd minute he beat his marker and was taken down, winning a free kick in a dangerous area. Ben Howe stepped up to find Dylan Urquhart with his curling free kick which was headed home. The hosts then won it on 72 minutes, Declan Tanna on target to win it. “Going into round one was always going to be a tough ask for the lads because we decided not to play any friendlies against other clubs, so we really didn’t know where we sat and how the others were looking,” Ciampini said.

“It’s obvious that most clubs were impacted somehow through Covid-19 and we were no different. We’ve had a reshuffle of players and staff, and the focus now is to build and cement a very strong squad for next season. Curtin had been playing friendlies and are also going through some reshuffling with the appointment of a new coach. I knew Tim was going to have them very organised so we focused on just keeping the ball and testing their fitness. Credit to Curtin for their first half performance which gave us a bit of a wakeup call, but full credit to the lads who came from behind to earn the three points. Special mention must go to Kai Jones, who at only 19, and a product of MUMFC, played a commendable 90 minutes of First Team football.”

Canning City have bragging rights in the ‘Frank Longstaff Trophy’ after beating Gosnells City 3-1 at Walter Padbury Reserve. It was a tight first half with clear cut chances few and far between. But it was Canning who opened the scoring five minutes into the second half with Joe Kelly on target. It was 2-0 four minutes later with Kelly bagging his second and it looked all over when Ryan Moran added a third on 75 minutes. Gosnells found a lifeline four minutes from time with Scott Pereira scoring, but it was too little too late. “The first half was full of intensity and while we had more of the possession, we couldn’t find our flow and rhythm going in 0-0,” Canning Head Coach Chris Finlayson said. “But after we scored our first goal, we turned that possession into dominance and got our football going and scored a great third goal. We then went to the bench and gave young 18-year-old Rowan Steed his senior debut unfortunately we conceded in the last few minutes and that was very disappointing end to what was a great second half by the lads.”

In the final game new Kelmscott Roos Head Coach Warren Smith started with three points after a 2-1 win against Morley Windmills at Wotton Reserve. The visitors started well but against the run of play Morley hit the front on 29 minutes, with Scott Wrightson on target. But the visitors were level four minutes later, Lemeo Wordu was brought down in the box, and George Ballah stepped up and clinically put the spot kick away. They won it on 64 minutes, Arthur Gaye put great ball through for Amos Doegolia Junior, who beat the defender and keeper and finished well. “I am very happy with the result today but we need to work on our game in areas which were noted from the game,” Smith explained. “Together as a collective group we need to work harder and not get carried away with one win, there is still a long road ahead for players and club.”

4.7.2020

CLUB IN PROFILE - FORRESTFIELD UNITED FOOTBALL CLUB

Forrestfield United Football Club have a long history in WA football, and were originally known as Cottestloe when they entered the semi-professional competition in 1962. After five seasons in what would today be known as Division One, the club won their first league championship in 1966 and with it promotion to the top flight. The club made the top four in it's first two seasons in the big league before finishing sixth in 1969 and just avoiding relegation when they had a ninth place finish in 1970.

Cottesloe merged in 1971 with SMA United (Swan Migrant Association) to become SMA Cottelsoe. As SMA were based in the Ascot area it was decided to change the club name to "Ascot Soccer Club" the following year.

In their first season as Ascot, the club found the going tough, ending the season in eighth. However, a recruitment drive that summer meant the club were one of the favourites for the 1973 championship. The title race went right to the last game, but Morley-Windmills just made it over the line by goal average. Ascot had to settle for runners-up.

In 1974 the club went one better and became WA Champions when they easily took out the title by nine points. Which is even more impressive considering it was only two points for a win.

In 1978 Ascot won the last Ampol Cup (Night Series), and that trophy is still proudly on display in the Forrestfield clubrooms. Following that season, Ascot were in merger discussions with Kalamunda United who had just entered the new Fourth Division, and were based at Hartfield Park in Forrestfield. The merger went ahead, and the new name of the club was to become Forrestfield United in 1979.

In their first two years as Forrestfield United, the club had difficult seasons, however that was all to change in 1981. Under new coach Ray Ilott, the club finished runners-up to Perth Azzurri, but were the only team to beat them all year when they took out the Top Four Cup.

There was a big drop to tenth in 1982 and then a bad season in 1983 which led to relegation. Forrestfield were determined to go straight back up, and after a shaky start, they did so by winning what would now be called Division One under coach Jimmy Perason.

Forrestfield's stay back in the top flight only lasted two seasons with relegation after the 1986 season. Relegation to the third tier almost followed, however the club just managed to stay up. It was a tough few seasons for Forrestfield, however they did manage to finish as high as fourth in 1992. Just prior to the start of the 1993 season, Forrestfield surprised everyone with their withdrawal from the semi-professional competition.

The club's main team was now in the Amateur competition, and it was a difficult year in 1994 when Forrestfield finished second from bottom in the Amateur Premier Division which meant a further relegation. After a three year stint in Amateur Division One, the club finished runners-up and were back in the Premier.

Under coach John McKenna, the club finished eighth in their first season back in the Amateur Premier. In 2000 the club had a great year, they secured runners-up in the league and made it all the way to the Amateur Cup Final, but lost out in an epic 4-3 battle to Murdoch University.

Another second placed position followed in 2002 and then in 2003 the club went on to win the Amateur Cup by beating Fremantle United 2-0. It was at this stage the club was considering a move back into semi-professional football. After failing in their move with Soccer West Coast in 2004, new body Football West took over the following year, and accepted Forrestfield into the semi-professional league.

In 2005, Forrestfield were back where they belong after thirteen years. WA football legend John Hunter became coach, and the club finished in eighth spot. After similar positions over the next few years, Forrestfield got as high as fourth in 2009 and 2010.

In 2012, the club had a difficult year, finishing last and relegation. It did not get an easier, with another last position the following season in Division Two, but luckily there was no relegation back to the amateurs that year.

Rod Banjac then took over as coach, and with a whole new team, Banjac led them to third place in 2014, followed by the title and promotion in 2015. Forrestfield were back in Division One in 2016, and the club had their eyes on the NPL-WA. A runners-up position in 2017 was good enough for a play-off position against Mandurah City, and a win there put Forrestfield back in the top league for the first time since 1986.

After a thirty-two year wait, Forrestfield were once again in the top flight. However with three teams going down, it was always going to be difficult. After a decent start, the Hartfield Park outfit finished in thirteenth place and relegation.

Graham Normanton took over as new coach in 2019 back in Division One, and led the club to the lower division Night Series trophy and sixth place in the league. Normanton has continued in his role in 2020, and will hope to lead the club to an even higher position this season.

SEMI-PROFESSIONAL LEAGUE HONOURS (Using current divisional names)
remier League winners - 1974 (Ascot)
Premier League runners-up - 1981
Premier League runners-up - 1973 (Ascot)
First Division winners - 1984
First Division winners - 1966 (Cottesloe)
First Division runners-up - 2017
Second Division winners - 2015
Premier League Top Four/Five Cup winners - 1981
Premier League Top Four/Five Cup runners-up - 1974 (Ascot)
Night Series winners - 1974, 1978 (Ascot)
Night Series runners-up - 1975 (Ascot)
Night Series Lower Division winners - 2019
Night Series Lower Division runners-up - 2016, 2017




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 jacob@footballwa.net

since the 26th June, 2002

eXTReMe Tracker

Last Update: 6th July, 2020

© 1997 - 2020

Formerly www.soccerwa.com