Football with style is here!
The inaugural semi finalists of the Westfield W-League have been determined after a thrilling final round on the weekend. While Queensland Roar-s finish at the top of the table was confirmed some weeks ago, the battle for minor placings was decided in the final round, with Newcastle finishing in 2nd, Canberra United in 3rd and Sydney FC sneaked into 4th position, ahead of Melbourne Victory and Central Coast Mariners.
Results – Round 10
CENTRAL COAST MARINERS 2 beat Melbourne Victory 0
SYDNEY FC 3 beat Adelaide United 0
Canberra United 1 drew Queensland Roar 1
Perth Glory 0 drew Newcastle Jets 0
SF 2 – Newcastle Jets v Canberra United – Saturday January 10 – 4.00pm at EnergyAustralia Stadium
SF1 – Queensland Roar v Sydney FC – Sunday January 11 – 4.00pm at Ballymore Stadium
Melbourne Victory surrendered its finals spot after going down 2-0 to Central Coast Mariners at Parramatta Stadium. Starting the day in 4th spot, a finals spot was Melbourne-s to lose and that-s exactly what happened, as the Mariners outfit was determined to end their season on a high. In a good open game of football, both sides created numerous chances, but the game wasn-t decided until a frantic final five minutes of the game. The Mariners had looked threatening and with Melbourne needing a win to secure its spot, were caught out on the break with three minutes remaining; Jenna Kingsley beating the offside trap and finishing neatly past Melissa Barbieri. Then with two minutes of injury time played, Elizabeth O-Reilly volleyed home a second, which put their finals chances were into jeopardy with Sydney FC only needing a score draw to advance to the finals.
Sydney FC buoyed by the fact that Melbourne had been beaten by the Mariners in the first of the double-header at Parramatta Stadium, came out firing against bottom side Adelaide United. The competition-s leading goalscorer Leena Khamis ended her lean spell in front of goal by putting Sydney in front after just four minutes and was quickly followed by a goal to Kylie Ledbrook, who curled a delightful free kick home, despite a valiant effort from Emma Wirkus in the Adelaide goal. Sydney were on a roll and Leah Blayney was denied by Wirkus, before Jo Burgess made it 3-0 in the 28th minute. The second half though saw Sydney have to survive a spirited Adelaide comeback and Victoria Balomenos reduced the deficit with a fabulous free kick that bounced over the line after hitting the underside of the crossbar. Kristyn Swaffer then reduced that lead again with a powerful header. Both goalkeepers were forced to make a number of saves in the remainder of the match and when Adelaide-s Renee Harrison was sent off late in the game, Sydney held on to make it through to the finals. The were further boosted by the return of dangerous forward Sarah Walsh for her first game of the competition, while captain Heather Garriock is expected to be back for the semi final.
Canberra United were denied a second win over the all-conquering Queensland Roar side, with the Roar-s Vedrana Popovic coming off the bench and scoring an equalising goal. Canberra can go into the finals series, knowing they are the only team to have taken points off Roar this season and with a little luck it may have been two wins, after beating them earlier in the season. The first half was a tight affair with neither side creating too many chances in the heavy rain. Canberra-s Bronwyn Studman forced a great save from Casey Dumont after just 2 minutes, while a Tameka Butt shot took a wicked deflection that hit the top of the crossbar, for the closest and best chance to fall Queensland-s way. The game came alive when Canberra took the lead after 65 minutes, when Caitlin Munoz neatly slotted past Dumont. They should have had a second ten minutes later, when they were awarded a penalty after Dumont felled Ashleigh Sykes in the box, but the keeper redeemed herself to save Ellie Brush-s spot kick. Canberra were to rue that miss, with Popovic coming off the bench and within two minutes heading home a cross from Alicia Ferguson to tie it up, which resulted in Canberra staying in third spot.
Newcastle Jets secured a home semi final after securing the point it needed to stay in second spot. In an entertaining game against Perth Glory, neither side could trouble the goalscorers, despite numerous chances being created. Perth-s Lisa De Vanna was a constant menace with her pace for the Jets defence and in the 21st minute, she should have put her team in front when she shot wide after getting clear and only Alison Logue to beat. Kate Gill also had a good chance to break the deadlock for the Jets but her shot sailed high over the bar after 37 minutes. The second half saw both side pepper the goals with the Jets in particular having many shots at goal, but in the end neither side could find the net and the Jets went home happy and will now host Canberra in their semi final clash at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Saturday week.
Weekend Goals Tally: 9
Card Count: 13 yellows – 2 reds
7 – Leena Khamis (SFC)
6 – Courtney Beutel (QR), Katie Gill (NJ)
5 – Kyah Simon (CCM), Lana Harch (QR)
4 – Lauren Colthorpe (QR), Sandra Scalzi (AU), Marianna Tabain (PG), Caitlin Munoz (CU),
3 – Sharon Black (AU), Renee Rollason (CCM), Lisa De Vanna (PG), Trudy Camilleri (CCM), Alicia Ferguson (QR), Ellie Brush (CU), Victoria Balomenos (AU), Jenna Kingsley (CCM)