Sydney FC will lock horns with the Central Coast Mariners on Wednesday evening at Leichhardt Oval as they hunt for a spot inside the top two.
Having been playing catch up since heading to Uzbekistan for the AFC Women’s Club Championship, this will be the Sky Blues’ final rearranged game which will put them level on matches played (12) with the rest of the competition. A win will see them move above Perth Glory and sit four points behind ladder leaders Melbourne City.
It has been a tough season for Ante Juric’s side as they have had to overcome many injuries and still have a large ailment list which is slowly improving as was seen last Sunday when Cortnee Vine, returning from a calf complaint, popped up with the winner against Western United.
The Sky Blues were struggling to create opportunities and there was a visible lift in atmosphere and intensity with the Matildas’ winger arrival. They will be looking to use the same to their advantage this Wednesday at Leichhardt Oval for the visit of the Mariners.
Last weekend, the Mariners headed to Leichhardt Oval as part of Unite Round and were technically the away side against the Wellington Phoenix and managed to grind out a 2-1 win. The Kiwi’s took the league early in the first half but goals to Peta Trimis and Rola Badawiya was enough for the Yellow and Navy to hold onto all three points.
Despite being the competition newcomers, the Mariners have been punching above their weight and a win on Wednesday night will see them jump five teams into the top four.
In the previous meeting between the two teams, their defensive records were on full showing as they played out a 0-0 in front of a decent crowd at Industree Group Stadium. On that afternoon, both teams struggled to create a clear cut chance, however the best chance did fall to the hosts but they were denied by an in-form Jada Whyman who now sits on six clean sheets this season from 11 matches.
Ante Juric and Shay Hollman will miss this clash due to suspension with Tom Whiteside leading the team on Wednesday night. This will be his second match in charge of the team after Juric was sick back in February 2022 and missed the 1-0 victory over Newcastle Jets at No.2 Sportsground. Shay Hollman accumulated five yellow cards on Sunday against Western United and will be back for Sunday’s Jets clash.
The Mariners will be sweating on the fitness of their captain Taren King who missed out on Sunday’s clash due to injury. She was however named in the extended squad.
This could be a tense fixture but the atmosphere should be electric at the tightly packed Leichhardt Oval.
Sydney FC v Central Coast Mariners
Liberty A-League Round 3
Wednesday 17th January 2024
Leichhardt Oval, Leichhardt, NSW
Kick Off: 7:00pm AEDT
Gates Open: 6:00pm AEDT
Broadcast Live: Paramount+ & 10Play
Tickets: Click Here