A first game at McKellar Park in 2023 awaits Canberra United as they welcome Newcastle Jets in Round 10 of the Liberty A-League for a fixture that has taken on even more importance after results last weekend.

Canberra ended their three-match losing streak in some style as they swept aside Adelaide United in South Australia, goals from Michelle Heyman and Grace Maher doing the damage for Njegosh Popovich and his team and reigniting hopes of reaching the top four and playing finals football later this year.

The victory moved United to within five points of fourth-placed Melbourne Victory and with the Jets sitting just one place below Canberra, a point further adrift, the magnitude of a potential three points for either is obvious.

Newcastle’s own 2-0 win over the Lady Reds a fortnight ago, one achieved at their home ground of No. 2 Sportsground in Northern NSW, showed that, on their day, they are more than a match for most.

And yet any momentum that they appeared to have gained was cruelly undone by a rampant Sydney FC last time out, the Sky Blues roaring into a three-goal lead inside just seven minutes, a spectacular start from which the Jets, unsurprisingly, could not recover.

Whether they can rediscover the form that saw them win against Adelaide, or whether we will see the Jets team that was regularly shipping goals early in the campaign, remains to be seen.

What we do know is that Canberra has a very good home record against the team from Newcastle, winning six of the seven matches played in Canberra. In a bizarre quirk of the fixtures, by comparison, the two have met fourteen times in Northern NSW. Overall Canberra have won fifteen of these matches and only lost three.

Indeed, Canberra hasn’t lost to Newcastle since November 2018 and, in the four matches that have been played since that date, have managed to score ten times, including six in two matches’ last season.

A convincing 3-0 home win at Viking Park in February followed on from a hugely entertaining draw in the first game of 2022 as the teams shared six goals in a 3-3 thriller at McDonald Jones Stadium, Ashleigh Sykes scoring twice for the visitors.

With 73 goals scored in 21 matches played when Canberra and Newcastle meet, at an average of 3.47 per game, goals are almost guaranteed! So what better way to welcome United back home than by getting to McKellar in your green and cheering our home team this weekend.


Saturday 14 January 2023

Canberra United v Newcastle Jets

(McKellar Park, 15:00)

Gates Open: 14:00