Arrive Alive NSW Womens Premier League Round 8 Preview


Competition leaders Macarthur Rams venture to Marconi Stadium for their return clash with The Stallions. The 5-0 drubbing dished out by Marconi to Rams in the first game of the season should be plenty of motivation for the defending champions. Since that match, Macarthur have gradually built momentum culminating in solid wins over fellow premiership hopefuls NWS Koalas and Manly United. The Rams have so many players who appear to have hit a purple patch of form, especially Kylie Ledbrook, who has snatched the winning goal against both Koalas and Manly in recent weeks.
Marconi?s form has flattened out a little with injuries blunting their strike power. Trudy Camilleri has been in fine form. Her combination with Fab Perfilio produced some of the best attacking moments for The Stallions in last weekend?s clash with Koalas. That match was a tough encounter, settled by two goals that both had a touch of good fortune to them. Coach Mauro Tacco was happy with the effort his girls put into last weekend?s game and will be hoping that they have a bit more luck in this match. Marconi are always tough to beat, especially at home.
This looms as quite a game of football but it?s hard to go past The Rams in their current form. Of course this scribe selecting them to win will do nothing for their chances!
Sydney University, fresh from their first win of the season last weekend, will host Manly United FC at Sydney University Oval. University have battled hard since their promotion into the top level this season but have found the rise in class difficult to handle. Whilst the win over tailenders Central Coast Lightning will be a big tonic for the University girls, this Manly United team will be very tough to get past. Manly are a strong, physical side with plenty of talent. Their performances so far this season have stamped them as serious contenders. They won?t be looking at dropping any points in this game.
Manly will win comfortably.
A resurgent Penrith Nepean side meet NWS Koalas at Cook Park, St Marys. Penrith haven?t lost a game since beating Marconi Stallions in Round 4. They?ve moved into fourth place on the competition table with a couple of games in hand due to washouts. Their progress must be worrying a few of the competitions high flyers and Penrith will be keen to add The Koalas scalp to their belts.
The Koalas have looked good without any frills. They?re a hard working side who use the width of the park. Their defence, led by Adrijana Cirjak, is quite solid. The experienced Alicia Cavanagh offers plenty of skill up front whilst players like Sanaa Hawkins, Natalie Spirovski, Rachel Jones and Anna McLean will cause the Penrith side plenty of headaches. This is a side good enough to go all the way in 2008.
The Koalas never win the big games by a lot but they do win. I think they?ll take the points from this game.
The final match of the round sees Central Coast Lightning up against Sutherland Sharks.  After grabbing a late equaliser last weekend it would have been a real gut buster for the Central Coast girls to see Sydney University snatch an even later winner. They?ll take some heart from the fact that their first round meeting against The Sharks gave them their only competition point of the season. Maybe the home ground advantage will lift the Central Coast girls for this one.
The Sharks have now lost five in a row. They have been quite competitive in matches against the leading sides but have lacked the spark to get away with some tight games. Playing the two bottom of the table sides in the next two matches offers them a chance to work their way back into the finals race. They?ll be looking to leading scorer Maggie El Hussieni to put away any chances and lift her team to a much needed win.
The Sharks to win.
Though our Football NSW Match of the Day coverage comes from the Arrive Alive NSW Womens Super League this weekend I?ll be keeping a close eye on results from the two big matches between Marconi Stallions/Macarthur Rams and Penrith Nepean United/NWS Koalas. They should both be humdingers with plenty of action, deserving of a big crowd of women?s football followers.
Good luck to all the teams. May the best sides win!
-By Ross Anderson