The Newcastle Jets have sent a full strength squad to the nation’s capital for an intensive program of training and a pre-season friendly.
Their opponents for the clash – Capital PS4 National Premier League (NPL) table-toppers – Canberra Olympic.
The current NPL champions pose strong opposition, having won the league in 2013 and 2014. Olympic were also recently knocked out of the FFA Cup Round of 32, following a 1 – 0 defeat to Sorrento FC.
The Jets have been making the most of the nation’s sports training institute, with coach Ernie Merrick keen to maintain a strong training schedule during this away trip.
“We wanted to ensure the boys got the most out of this trip, so we’ve put together an intensive training program for the next few days,” said Merrick.
“The boys will be training the day before, the day of and the day after the game to get some quality run in their legs for the A-League opposition that awaits us in the coming weeks.
“This sort of workload is what pre-season is all about, and the boys are relishing the challenge.”
Merrick spoke highly of the Jets NPL opposition, predicting a tough match for his visiting team.
“I think it will be a really competitive game, they’ve been together for a few years now and had some success,” he added.
“It’ll be a great challenge for the guys as we continue to work on playing consistently to our game plan moving forward.
“We’re also beginning to turn our focus to refining our restarts and set pieces, so tonight will be a good opportunity to put that practice into play.”
The match with Canberra Olympic is the first in a string of pre-season matches as the Jets prepare for the Hyundai A-League.
Upcoming pre-season fixtures are scheduled against Sydney FC (9 September) and Wellington Phoenix (16 September).
Tonight’s match will kick-off at 6.30pm at Deakin Stadium and we’ll be live-tweeting all the action, so follow @newcastlejetsfc to keep up with the results as they happen!