The stage is set for the start of the Liberty A-League Women’s season, and as fans eagerly anticipate the action, all eyes are on the upcoming Sydney Derby this Saturday night.
The Sky Blues are coming off the back off a brilliant campaign last season which saw them lift the Premiers Plate and Championship trophy. The first player to get her hands on these in her 10th year at the club was captain Nat Tobin.
She returns to lead the girls once again and can’t wait to rip in.
“I love it. I love playing. I love seeing the girls,” she said.
“It’s great having the new facility too. I’m very very excited.”
Pre-season has been on-going for the last six weeks at the new Sky Park facility and the captain likes what she is seeing from her team-mates.
“It’s been going well and I think the team has gelled quite quickly.
“We’ve had quite a big turnover in players this year but I think everyone is getting on really well and the new ones are integrating really well.
“It’s almost been better to have a new squad so we can click as one.”
And after sweeping all before them last season, the Sky Blues’ ambition remains much the same this time around.
“Yeah, the ambition is to do the double double,” Tobin states with determination.
“Ante’s pretty familiar with how to win now and he’s quite good at picking who will fit well into our team and the team culture. So I think he’s done really well again this year in doing that.”
There has been a number of new faces around the squad and the skipper is impressed with what she is seeing from her team-mates on the park.
“Prinny [Princess Ibini has had an awesome pre-season and she looks like she is really firing which is great to see.
“Tori [Tumeth] at right back has slotted right into the team and coming off the back of an ACL injury, she is doing an amazing job. She is so tough, you just wouldn’t know she missed all of last season,” Tobin added.
“Lucy Johnson has also done well since arriving in the midfield and she has a great eye for splitting passes which can certainly rattle defences.
“Overall though, the entire squad looks absolutely awesome and everyone is really switched on.”
After all the work during pre-season, it will all kick off on Saturday night at Allianz Stadium with a Sydney Derby and the captain can’t wait for the fans to experience the thrill of the rivalry.
“They’re always feisty contests and it’s always been that fierce rivalry.
“Wanderers always want to beat Sydney because we’ve always been on top so it will definitely be a worthwhile match to come out and watch,” she said.
Coming off the back of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, the central defender can’t wait to see the fans back in the stands.
“I think it will be incredible to play in front of a crowd like the Grand Final but I don’t know what to expect.
“I hope that people brig the hype from the World Cup. We’re hoping to see incredible growth from it because this is always a good match,” Nat said.
Catch Nat and the girls in the 23rd Sydney Derby from Allianz Stadium on Saturday.
Sydney FC v Western Sydney Wanderers
Liberty A-League Round One
Saturday 14th October 2023
Allianz Stadium, Sydney, NSW
Kick Off: 7:45pm AEDT
Gates Open: 6:45pm AEDT
Broadcast Live: Paramount+ & 10Bold
Tickets: Click Here