A fascinating contest will greet nationwide TV viewers on Sunday as Adelaide United host Newcastle Jets on Coopers Stadium’s carpet-like surface.
The pair have been the league’s worst performing sides over the course of the Westfield W-League’s history but this season, refreshingly, has seen a complete turn-around for both.
Adelaide sit second with seven points from four matches, while the Jets are in seventh, though just two points behind amid a congested ladder.
It is the home team who have perhaps been the revelation of the season. The Lady Reds might be short on headline names yet they are flourishing under former Perth Glory boss Jamie Harnwell, who has maintained the momentum of Ross Aloisi’s time in charge, despite a host of departures during the off-season.
Adelaide will be looking for goals from one of the players that Harnwell brought from Perth. Rosie Sutton nabbed a hat-trick a fortnight ago as Adelaide secured a 4-0 win at Melbourne Victory – their best-ever away win.
Newcastle, in contrast, have faced problems in front of goal. Their five points have come despite accruing just two goals this season. Perhaps eyeing this fixture more keenly than most will be Jets forward Rhali Dobson, who scored an impressive double last season in a showing that helped her earn Westfield Matildas squad selection, as her side won 4-0.
“It (has been) a bit of a rebuilding stage for us,” said Jets’ defender Georgia Yeoman-Dale. “But the results we have been getting are quite pleasing and I think there is definitely more to come from us.
“We’ve had a good start to the season but we’re still struggling to get goals. We’re working on a few different things at training to try counteract that.”
The match at the venue formerly known as Hindmarsh Stadium will be part of a Hyundai A-League double-header with the same two clubs featured in the latter fixture.
Adelaide United v Newcastle Jets
Sunday 22 November 2015
Coopers Stadium, Adelaide
Local kick-off: 1.30pm (2pm AEDT)
(Hyundai A-League double-header)
* Watch all the action Live from 2.00pm nationally on Fox Sports (Channel 505), or ABC TV. Or catch-up on ABC iView.
Join the conversation on Twitter using match hashtag #ADLv NEW
Adelaide United squad: 1. Kaitlyn Savage (gk), 2. Lauren Steer, 3. Alexandra Gummer, 4. Sarah Killion, 5. Allira Toby, 6. Chantelle Ryder, 8. Emily Condon, 9. Marijana Rajcic, 10. Georgia Campagnale, 11. Rosie Sutton, 12. Elizabeth Milne, 13. Abbigail Dahlkemper, 14. Grace Abbey, 17. Tiarn Powell, 18. Lorena Maggio, 20. Claudia Jenkins (gk)
Ins: Chantelle Ryder (promoted)
Newcastle Jets squad: 1.Hannah Southwell (gk), 2. Sophie Nenadovic, 3. Georgia Yeoman-Dale, 4. Megan Oyster, 5.Caprice Dydasco, 6.Cassidy Davis, 7.Gema Simon (c), 9. Tara Andrews, 10. Rhali Dobson, 12.Chloe Logarzo, 13. Adriana Jones, 14. Brooke Miller, 17. Jenna Kingsley, 18. Claire Wheeler, 19. Hannah Bromley, 20. Claire Coelho (gk)
Ins: Brooke Miller, Sophie Nenadovic (both promoted)
Outs: Elizabeth Copus-Brown (omitted)