All eyes focus on the Premiership race in round eleven of the NPL4 Men’s competition.
With Finals just a week away, some will want to go in with a victory, whilst others look to 2021 for motivation.
Fraser Park FC v Nepean FC; Saturday 26th September, 7pm @ Fraser Park
In all likelihood, Saturday’s clash between Fraser Park and Nepean will be the first of two in consecutive weekends. Still, a lot is on the line when these two sides meet Saturday night.
Fraser Park will be looking to complete the job following a confidence boosting victory last weekend. In that game, they turned their premiership hopes around with two late goals from Shu Torihara and Matteo Pandalfo. For a club that can be hard to stop once they gain momentum, surely the three points this weekend is a formality.
Take the chance to rest or look to cease momentum? That is the conundrum facing Nepean FC’s coach Joe D’Ermilio coming into this one. Added to the puzzle, last week’s result which saw them come away with only a point against Western NSW FC. Once again, Mitch Mclintock starred but be warned, do not ignore anyone in this team. They have the potential to be lifting a trophy in a few weeks.
Camden Tigers FC v UNSW FC; Saturday 26th September, 7pm @ Ron Dine Stadium
Two home victories in a row, Camden Tigers have finally adjusted to life in NPL4. This clash however will tell us a lot about their hopes beyond this year. Last weekend, they beat South Coast Flame in a pleasing performance to coach Rod Henderson. Henderson giving a special mention to debutant Matthew Pace after a really good performance.
There is no denying it. Last week was a blow to everyone associated with UNSW FC. Having held the lead at the top for just over a month, they were jumped by neighbors Fraser Park. It came after a disappointing performance against Hawkesbury City who they will most likely meet next weekend. A win in this one will be vital to potential premiership and championship hopes.
Western NSW FC v Granville Rage; Saturday 26th September, 3pm @ Charles Sturt University (CSU)
Western NSW FC will roll out the welcome mat one last time in 2020, with Granville Rage their opponents. Last weekend, any finals hopes they held were extinguished in a score draw at Cook Park in which Mark Rooke’s men were left disappointed with the result. However, there was reason to take positives from the clash, with both Matthew Hobby and Jesse Boness finding the net.
Well at least they will not emerge from this season, pointless (I hear a fellow FNSW writer won a show of the same name), anyway where was I… Granville Rage secured their first point of the season last week against Prospect United. It has been a tough year for the only homeless club in NSW. Maybe they can end it on a high in Orange?
South Coast Flame FC v Hawkesbury City FC; Saturday 26th September, 6pm @ Ian Mclennan Park
Hawkesbury City will be looking to go in to the finals in good form as they take on South Coast Flame this weekend. The Hawks will take flight for the first time in over a month. They do so after a goalless draw against UNSW FC last weekend. In that one, there were few clear-cut chances and keeper Craig Morley had to be alert on occasion.
They come up against a South Coast Flame with only pride to play for. The Flame have suffered a disappointing drop off in a season that promised so much. Last week they came off second best against a determined Camden Tigers side at Ron Dine Stadium. If they are to surprise their visitors in this one, you would suggest Sandy Lowcock will play a part after netting his second goal of the season last weekend.
Hurstville FC v Parramatta FC; Saturday 26th September, 7pm @ Seymour Shaw
If they are to challenge next year, these are the games that Hurstville FC need to start winning. The team from Sydney’s south have made a habit of rising for the big games whilst struggling to win against teams around them. Last weekend they gave Fraser Park a scare before conceding two goals late on. Just one game, but a win could raise morale for the pre-season ahead.
In contrast, the end of the season cannot come quick enough for Parramatta FC. Having conceded two goals in their past two outings, they have the chance to go out on a high against one of the tougher teams to play in the league. Positives? Adrian Epifanino has scored in both those games, tighten up in the defensive third and they will have a good chance at victory Saturday night.
Prospect United – Bye
By Justin Smith (Twitter: @smiththejustin)