Canberra are underdogs: Hooker

Canberra United head coach, Robbie Hooker, believes that his side are the “underdogs” heading into the Westfield W-League semi final against the Newcastle Jets tomorrow night at Energy Australia Stadium.

Canberra United head coach, Robbie Hooker, believes that his side are the “underdogs” heading into the Westfield W-League semi final against the Newcastle Jets tomorrow night at Energy Australia Stadium.

In the only previous meeting this season, Canberra United went down 2-1 to the Jets in Round One before finishing the season in third, one spot behind Newcastle in second.

“I guess we go into the game as underdogs considering all the things that are against us, away game, playing against a team that has ready beaten us and also a team that has finished ahead of us on the table,” Hooker said as the team departed Canberra this morning for Newcastle.

Reminiscing on the result from early in the season, Canberra United believes they-ve got a score to settle. “It-s a big chance for revenge,” a very determined Hooker said.

“There-s no better way to get revenge than a semi final because you don-t have to meet them again this year.”

Newcastle striker, Katie Gill, scoring twice in the first game of the season to sink the visitors, but Hooker is not looking to repeat history as his side looking to continue their seven game un-defeated streak.

“Katie [Gill] is a dangerous player if you let her be dangerous.”

“We need to make sure that, if we can, possibly not let her get into too much of a physical contest with any of our players, if we can try and win the ball before it gets to her that would be good.”

“I don-t think she possess a treat to us with her pace because I don-t think she-s quick enough to get in behind us, it-s more of an aerial threat and her support play which is dangerous for us.”

“Obviously in and around the box she-s a good finisher so we don-t want to give her any opportunities.”

With a full strength squad to select from for only the second time this season, Hooker is still deciding on the line up with a final training session taking place this afternoon in Newcastle. “I-ve probably made my mind up on about ten spots, there-s one spot I-m not really 100% sure on in the midfield but certainly the whole squad is ready to play and everybody is in contention for a spot on the bench.”

“These are the games that everybody wants to play in and everybody looks forward to being fit for.” “It-s just a matter of making sure about the players that were questionable how close they are to 100% and whether we take a gamble with that or whether we pick players that are fully fit.”

With all twenty players available for the match, it-s been competitive for starting and bench spots at training during the week.

“Everybody is really looking forward to the challenge; training has been really good this week,” everybody is keen to go so it-s more a matter of trying to hold them back a little bit.”

“Everybody has trained the house down this week, even some players who usually turn up late are getting there on line and players who were getting there on time are getting there early so it-s always a good sign,” a pleased head coach said.

Canberra United takes on the Newcastle Jets in the Westfield W-League semi final tomorrow evening at Energy Australia Stadium with kick off at 4:00pm.