A long season, longest on record, finally draws to a close this Sunday afternoon in the National Premier Leagues NSW Women’s competition.
Sydney University and Manly United will battle out for the big prize at Valentine Sports Park and look to lift the Championship trophy after what has been a strange campaign to say the least.
SYDNEY UNIVERSITY (1ST)
The Premiers are back once more in the Grand Final and are looking to consolidate their first ‘double-double’, illustrating their dominance in the women’s competition.
Despite doing it tough on Sunday, Uni got the job done convincingly in the end and what Alex Eapkis’ side has over all of its competitors, is depth.
The strength of the Uni bench is obvious when Michelle Heyman has to wait for her time to shine off the sideline.
Names like King, Hunt and Tumeth have created such a defensive wall for Uni that they’ve shut out even the most potent attackers this season, conceding an incredible three goals and keeping 9 clean sheets!
It goes deeper into midfield though with Galic and Wheeler providing their fair share of work, while the 34 goals scored so far this season distributed across 14 goal scorers, Julie-Ann Russell leading them with six.
They really are a complete team with the argument consistently rising, are they the best team ever in the top tier of women’s football in NSW?
32 games without defeat adds to that argument and if they lift the trophy on Sunday, the outstanding record will continue into 2021!
MANLY UNITED (3RD)
“You’re never a great team until you come from behind and win.”
Well, Chris Williams’ team showed that on Saturday afternoon in spectacular fashion, knocking out Sydney Olympic on enemy territory.
The character from United shone, even after losing their superstar Remy Siemsen to injury.
And Siemsen could be key on Sunday afternoon with the staff sweating on her fitness.
Even though Manly managed to book their grand final place, that flare in attack went missing with the exit of their star striker.
Tara Andrews had a fairly quite Saturday afternoon and if Siemsen is missing, she’ll need to fill those shoes, much like Elizabeth Copus-Bown did in the final 10 minutes of the match.
Corrine Winkler and Ally Green will be extremely important on Sunday, in particular the semi-final goal scorer who is a menace from set pieces.
Manly last defeat came seven games ago, against, you guessed it, Sydney Uni.
Since then, they’ve scored 22 goals and conceded only four.
If history is anything to go by, the last time Manly United’s reserves failed to make the finals, the first grade won the Championship in 2017, could we see a repeat?
Don’t forget leading into the big match, Sydney University SFC will also feature it’s 20s squad taking on the Football NSW Institute side.
LAST MEETINGS –
R6: Sydney University 2-0 Manly United
R20: Manly United 0-4 Sydney University
R9: Sydney University 2-1 Manly United
R22: Manly United 2-2 Sydney University
R11: Sydney University 3-0 Manly United
R14: Manly United 1-0 Sydney University
R5: Sydney University 1-1 Manly United
By Nikola Pozder, NPL NSW Women’s writer
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