Newcastle Jets will provide the opponent for Ante Juric’s Sydney FC on Sunday evening at Leichhardt Oval as they look to bounce back to winning ways.
The Sky Blues have now caught up with the rest of the pack in terms of matches played and sit in 3rd place currently with just over half of the season to go.
Last Wednesday, they had a short turnaround against the Central Coast Mariners and were super unfortunate not to get anything out of the game with a cruel late controversial penalty going against the Sky Blues as the 10 players of the Mariners won 2-1.
It was tough going in the attacking department for Juric’s side as they struggled to create any clear cut chances and only found the net with an outrageous long range free kick from Mackenzie Hawkesby who scored her first goal since arriving back at the club. They will be looking to score more than one goal in a game for the first time since late November.
Defensively, they have been relatively solid with only a deflected goal and a penalty that was initially saved from Jada Whyman that was turned home afterwards, the only two goals conceded in the last three matches.
Sadly, the injury list continues to build for Sydney FC as Abbey Lemon picked up a concussion on Wednesday night. She joins Nat Tobin, Shea Connors, Lucy Johnson and Fiona Worts in the physio room for the time being.
As for the Newcastle Jets, they have come on leaps and bounds this season from where they were previous. Star import striker Sarina Bolden has been finding the net for fun and netted once again in last week’s 2-1 victory over Brisbane Roar.
The Novocastrians currently sit in 7th place, just outside the finals positions, however three points against the Sky Blues on Sunday could propel them into third if results go their way across the weekend.
The only concern for the Jets will be the departure of their coach Gary Van Egmond who left for a role with the Chinese Football Association this week. Assistant Coach Ryan Campbell will immediately take the reins as interim Head Coach with the club now running a process to confirm the appointment of a permanent successor with the season still a long way from concluding.
In the previous meeting between the two sides this season, the Sky Blues wasted many chances in front of goal and it seemed like they would be punished by a Jets counter attack. However, the returning Cortnee Vine popped up with the winner after Princess Ibini won the ball from a poor clearance, and Sydney FC held on at a tense No.2 Sportsground with a strong vocal backing from the fans.
In recent times, Sydney FC have held the ascendancy over the Newcastle Jets, winning each of the last ten meetings between the two sides. You have to go all the way back to November 2017 to find the last time that the Jets beat Sydney FC with a 2-0 victory. Funnily enough, in the Jets team that day, Cortnee Vine.
This time around, with the electric winger in Sky Blue, you can expect to see her at her best as she has been working her way back to fitness following a calf complaint. On Wednesday night she got 45 minutes off the bench, and this could be the day we see her start a match for the first time since the turn of the year.
It promises to be an exciting evening of football when these two sides go head to head.
Sydney FC v Newcastle Jets
Liberty A-League Round 13
Sunday 21st January 2024
Leichhardt Oval, Leichhardt, NSW
Kick Off: 6:00pm AEDT
Gates Open: 5:00pm AEDT
Broadcast Live: Paramount+ & 10Play
Tickets: Click Here