United are back home this weekend as they take on Brisbane Roar.
Canberra United returns to McKellar Park for the first time since late October as they prepare to face Brisbane Roar in Round 8 of the Westfield W-League this weekend. And coming off the back of a successful away trip to Gosford, United will enter the weekend in second place and hoping to consolidate that position ahead of the second half of the campaign.
The basis of the successful climb at the table has been the increased ability to create, and take chances, which was evident in the 4-1 win over the Western Sydney Wanderers at the Central Coast Stadium. A brace from Kendall Fletcher, plus a Rachael Soutar own goal and a late finish from Ashleigh Sykes secured a vital, and highly impressive, victory for Rae Dower and her team.
Dower will have a selection headache of the nice kind this weekend with the return of the trio of Matildas’ internationals in the shape of goalkeeper Lydia Williams, midfielder Caitlin Munoz and striker Michelle Heyman. With their ‘replacements’, Melissa Maizels, Julia De Angelis and Meg McLaughlin performing superbly in the win over the Wanderers United have an embarrassment of riches from which to select.
The likely return of New Zealand international striker Emma Kete to the squad is another big boost with the former Manchester City front-runner nearly recovered from a knock sustained earlier in the season and looking to return to training this week with an eye on making the squad for the weekend.
United will be looking to gain a measure of revenge for their opening day loss to the Roar at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane when a brace of early goals left the visitors chasing their tails and unable to rescue a point. Since then Canberra has been in reasonable form and appear to be building towards a charge to defending their title – a feat that no side has achieved in the seven previous years of the competition.
Having travelled a huge distance in the past month the return to home and the creature comforts that it contains will be welcome for the squad. The noise and passion generated by the large crowds that Canberra usually enjoys has been conspicuously absent during the away leg of their tour of the East Coast and Dower and her squad will be sure to look to the crowd for their usual fervent support.
Canberra United v Brisbane Roar
Saturday 5th December 2015
McKellar Park, Belconnen
Canberra United Squad
1. Lydia WILLIAMS, 2. Catherine BROWN, 3. Julia DE ANGELIS, 4. Kendall FLETCHER, 5. Jenna MCCORMICK, 6. Caitlin MUNOZ, 7. Ellie BRUSH, 8. Meg MCLAUGHLIN, 9. Grace GILL, 10. Grace MAHER, 11. Michelle HEYMAN, 12. Emma KETE, 13. Nicole BEGG, 14. Ashleigh SYKES, 15. Emma CHECKER, 16. Tegan RIDING. 17. Veronica PEREZ, 18. Rebecca KITING, 19. Nickoletta FLANERRY, 20. Melissa MAIZELS