Arrive Alive NSW Women?s Premier League Round 13 Preview


Then there was a comment about some International at ANZ Stadium between The Back Up Socceroos and China? Has anyone heard anything about either of these football events?
Me? I?m going to the real football this weekend. Of course I?m talking about the Arrive Alive NSW Women?s Premier League! No prima donnas, nobody needing to show how tough they are, nothing but respect for all refereeing decisions?..okay, so the girls aren?t perfect! However, whilst others are at home with their feet up the Premier League girls will be doing battle in Round 13 matches.
Undoubtedly the match of the round is in God?s own country, the northern peninsula, between the local girls of Manly United FC and the competition leaders NWS Koalas. Manly have a rather tenuous hold on fourth place coming into this round with Penrith Nepean United hovering just three points behind.
When the Manly girls are at their best they?ve shown that they have the ability to match any side in the competition. They always seem to lift when playing the leading sides so one can expect a big effort from the seasiders on Sunday.
NWS Koalas have gone along in fine style throughout the season. Their one loss of the season to Macarthur Rams was avenged last weekend. The Koalas have played with plenty of determination. Nothing seems to be slowing their march towards the Minor Premiership. Sunday?s match will certainly be a solid test for the table toppers but it would be a brave soul who?d tip against them.
Neither of these sides take a backward step so this is sure to be tough encounter. The first round clash ended in a 1-0 win for The Koalas. I think a similar score is on the cards for the weekend but I tip that way with no great confidence. I?m sure these sides will be meeting for even bigger stakes a little later in the season.
Penrith Nepean United host Central Coast Lightning at Cook Park, St Marys. Penrith are still in the hunt for a semi final spot. However, one loss could be enough to severely dent their chances. On paper this is a game they look strong favourites to win but often games like that are the hardest encounters.
I?m sure that Penrith Coach Taryn Rockall will be making this point to her team in the lead up to Sunday?s game. I?ve been impressed with what I?ve seen from Penrith. They would not be out of place in the semi final series.
It?s been a long, hard season for the youngsters from Central Coast. One win so far this season, a couple of very severe defeats; it?s not easy to stay up in such circumstances. The Lightning lasses aren?t short of effort but the more experienced sides have shown them no mercy.  Their opponents this week have plenty to play for. The Central Coast girls only have pride; will that be enough?
Penrith to win. 
Sydney University and Macarthur Rams meet at Sydney University Oval. University have improved considerably as the competition has progressed. If results were to go the right way for them this weekend they may even edge into top four contention with a win here. That?s the outcome in an ideal world but The Rams are the type of side who are happy to smash the dreams of any opponent.
Macarthur will be smarting from last weekend?s loss to The Koalas. It?s a loss that?s given their Minor Premiership hopes a battering as The Koalas now sit three points clear with a game in hand. The Rams usually respond to losses with dominant performances the following week. The make up of their side is likely to change as suspension and injury concerns subside. This is not a good time for the University girls to be running into the defending premiers.
The Rams to win this one.
The final game of the round sees the Sutherland Sharks travelling to Marconi Stadium to meet The Stallions.
The Sharks are having a pretty miserable season. After two rounds Sutherland had four points from six and things looked optimistic. Ten rounds later they?re still on four points and battling to steer clear of the wooden spoon.
The Sharks are not a side without ability. They?re usually quite competitive and rarely does any side hand them a scoreboard thrashing. However Sutherland are a team that struggle to take their chances and this hurts them. Off season recruiting should be centred on finding a consistent goal thief. It?s been the difference between winning and losing in plenty of The Sharks games this year.
The Stallions sit safely in third place on the competition ladder. Everyone knows that Marconi are a fair dinkum premiership contender. They?ve turned in some very convincing performances during the season; ask Macarthur Rams for an assessment! There have been moments when The Stallions have dropped points unexpectedly but, then again, how many sides haven?t? Marconi have a strong, talented squad. On form this should be a match that they win with plenty to spare.
I?m doing Sharks Coach Michael Michael a favour here by tipping Marconi to win comfortably.
So, forget those other minor football events around the world this weekend. The Arrive Alive NSW Women?s Premier League is where the REAL action is at. All matches kick off early this week to cater for the World Cup Qualifier so if you MUST go and watch The Socceroos you can catch the best footballers first.
Have fun and enjoy the football feast.
By Ross Anderson