Michelle Heyman can almost be banked on to score on the opening day of the season.
That’s what the historical statistics say as Canberra United prepare to start Season 15 of the Liberty A-League when they welcome Perth Glory on their return to McKellar Park this Saturday afternoon.
Heyman, the arch goal-scorer and record breaker, has netted an incredible fourteen opening day strikes for Canberra United down the years, easily setting her apart from the rest of her teammates as the most prolific scorer on the first day back.
In six games it has even been Heyman who scored the first United goal of the campaign, and with the striker back for more in 2022/2023, fans of the team in green from the national capital will be hoping she can continue that remarkable trend.
In total Canberra has won seven of their fourteen first day matches, drawing one and losing the other six with Brisbane Roar being our most faced opponents first up, the Queenslanders providing the opposition on four occasions.
As for the Glory, well United have met them twice on the opening day of the season and have won both matches. Heyman, who else, struck a hat-trick in the 4-1 win in Perth to kick-off Season 3, Cian Maciejewski offering up the other goal, whilst a Simone Charley brace on debut, both goals in the opening eleven minutes, earned United the points in Season 12.
It tends to be win or bust in these games to start the year, only once in Liberty A-League history have United drawn, the 0-0 stalemate with Brisbane Roar in 2012/13 but a home match used to be a rarity.
While all four of United’s last first day encounters have been at home, prior to the start of that run in 2018/19, a 2-0 win over Melbourne City, that goalless draw with Roar was the only one of ten games in which Canberra started the campaign at home!
So, what can history tell us about this weekend’s game? United usually win at home when they play in Canberra in Round 1, and Heyman will usually score. We will take that thanks very much!
Canberra United open their Liberty A-League encounter with the visit of Perth Glory to McKellar Park on Saturday 19 November, Kick-off is at 3pm and tickets are on sale now.
OPENING MATCH STATISTICS
2008/09 v Newcastle Jets (a) L 1-2 (McDonnell 2’)
2009 v Brisbane Roar (a) L 0-3
2010/11 v Perth Glory (a) W 4-1 (Heyman 34’, 70’, 87’, Maciejewski 57’)
2011/12 Adelaide United (a) W 4-1 (Heyman 2’, 82’, Munoz 62’, 72’)
2012/13 v Brisbane Roar (h) D 0-0
2013/14 v Brisbane Roar (a) W 3-0 (Lindsay 8’, Heyman 38’, 49’)
2014 v Western Sydney Wanderers (a) W 4-1 (Heyman 3’, 41’, Brush 57’, Munoz 75’)
2015/16 v Brisbane Roar (a) L 1-2 (Heyman 39’)
2016/17 v Melbourne City (a) L 1-2 (Brush 90’ (p))*
2017/18 v Melbourne Victory (a) L 1-2 (Heyman 25’)
2018/19 v Melbourne City (h) W 2-0 (Mulaudzi 57’, Carpenter 85’)
2019/20 v Perth Glory (h) W 2-0 (Charley 6’, 11’)
2020/21 v Adelaide United (h) W 4-3 (Heyman 48’, 75’, 90’, Hughes 90’)
2021/22 v Melbourne City (h) L 0-1
*was a Round 2 match as United had the bye in Round 1
14 Michelle HEYMAN
3 Caitlin MUNOZ
2 Ellie BRUSH, Simone CHARLEY
1 Ellie CARPENTER, Laura HUGHES, Lori LINDSAY, Cian MACIEJEWSKI, Rhoda MULAUDZI, Sasha MCDONNELL
4 Brisbane Roar
3 Melbourne City
2 Adelaide United, Perth Glory
1 Melbourne Victory, Newcastle Jets, Western Sydney Wanderers
Saturday 19 November 2022
Canberra United v Perth Glory
(McKellar Park, 15:00)