W-League: Flying West for Saturday night

Three points is the ultimate prize in football, and it’s a prize which the Jets will be aiming to bring back from Perth this Saturday night.

Last weekend saw Newcastle go down to a resurgent Melbourne City side at home, with the Sky Blue outfit winning out 3-1.

It was a missed chance for a win which would have put the Jets firmly into finals contention at this early stage, but there are still only three points between Newcastle and third place.

SQUAD: The 17 heading across the Nullarbor 

Craig Deans experimented with a switch to a 3-5-2 formation in that match, which unleashed the pace of Taylor Smith and Gema Simon down their respective flanks.

It could be utilised once more this weekend, and with an extra week’s work on the training paddock under their belts it’s likely to look sharper than ever.

Teigan Collister Melbourne City
Teigan Collister came off the bench last weekend.

Perth Glory are currently sitting second on the Westfield W-League ladder but with just nine points under their belt, the Jets are within touching distance.

A Sam Kerr double secured a 2-2 draw with Adelaide last weekend for the Glory, who are yet to lose this season in the league.

Team news

An unchanged squad from Craig Deans means that it’s likely the starting XI is likely to stay pretty consistent.

The only place that change looks possible is Arin Wright, who missed out last Sunday with a hamstring injury.

It was only a precaution from the boss that Gilli was left out last weekend, so with an extra week to ensure that her hamstring strain doesn’t become serious she’ll likely be back in the mix.

Arin Gilliland Wright

From the coach

“We didn’t play as well as we would have liked to [last weekend]… we played quite attacking formation, which left us a bit exposed, but that was a risk I was prepared to take,” W-League boss, Craig Deans said.

“I don’t think we played badly. We had good chances that we didn’t take early, and City are a quality team so when they get the chances, they take them.

“Perth isn’t really a tough road trip, I don’t like that. I played over there for a few years, it’s just another, you jump on a plane, get off, and play a game of football.

“If you win, you’re happy, if you lose, you make an excuse that it’s a long way to go. We’ve had a couple of draws there, the last time we went, and we didn’t draw because of the long flight, we drew because we conceded a soft goal or we didn’t take our chances when we had them.

“I don’t talk to the players about travel and that sort of thing. It’s football. If we play better than Perth, we’ll win the game, if we don’t, then we won’t, and I’ll keep it as simple as that."

Newcastle Jets will travel across the Nullarbor to face Perth Glory in Round 8 of the Westfield W-League, on Saturday 15 December. Kick-off is at 10pm (AEDT), and you'll be able to catch the game on the MyFootball Live App and Fox Sports Online.