NEWS: Jets to face City as pre-season ramps up

A challenging pre-season schedule marches on for the Newcastle Jets, following recent friendly matches in Port Macquarie and Tamworth as part of #JetsTour17 fuelled by Greater Bank.

On the back of strong performances against Northern Inland Football Select and Football Mid-North Coast Select, Ernie Merrick’s men will travel to Victoria for a friendly with Melbourne City FC on Wednesday 23 August.

The match, being played behind closed doors, will feature a strong Jets side taking the field against the first of a number of Hyundai A-League opponents.

The Jets will then travel to the Australian Institute of Sport for a pre-season clash on Tuesday 29 August with Capital PS4 NPL table-toppers, Canberra Olympic.

Jets boss Ernie Merrick said the string of pre-season friendlies would build on the team’s confidence following #JetsTour17.

“The tour presented a great opportunity to prepare for (Hyundai) A-League opposition physically, technically and tactically ­– developing a high level of fitness across the squad and refining some of our combinations, particularly up front,” Merrick said.

“At the moment it’s about how we play to progress and improve, we’ll be playing every match to win and these upcoming fixtures are no different.

“We’re focused on some key tactical elements of our game and I’ll be looking for that across these matches, ensuring we’re prepared for the league as the season approaches.

“These upcoming games will help us develop our defensive structures and apply our game plan under fatigue, and it was really an ideal preparation to go on our tour of the Mid-North Coast prior to this friendly with Melbourne City.

“Melbourne City are always going to be a strong side and with quality players and a well-credentialed new coach, we’re expecting a tough match which is only going to benefit us in the long run.

“We’ll following this up with another game away from home, with the squad getting to enjoy the facilities at the AIS as well as another pre-season run against a battle-hardened Canberra Olympic – who boast one of the strongest reputations in the Capital (PS4) NPL.”

Following their away trips, the Jets will play host to Sydney FC on Saturday 9 September at Magic Park in Broadmeadow. The Wellington Phoenix will also make the trip across the ditch, visiting for a friendly on Saturday 16 September in Cessnock. Both games are currently scheduled to kick-off at 3:00pm.

Tickets to both local friendly matches will be available for purchase at the ground. Further details will be published soon.