Words: Michael Flynn | Image: Souths United FC
Gold Coast City Women’s coach Dave Thompson says his players are staying positive despite a stop-start campaign that recommences on Tuesday night against Souths United.
The uncustomary midweek kick-off comes after the initial clash between the two sides was postponed earlier this month due to a first-half lighting failure at Souths’ Wakerley Park home ground.
City are yet to play three consecutive weekends of football in the PlayStation 4 NPL Women’s Queensland this season – with wet weather and designated breaks in the schedule conspiring to inhibit Thompson’s hopes of building positive momentum.
However, despite the set-backs, Thompson says his charges are remaining upbeat and are eager to start stringing together a regular set of fixtures.
“The girls don’t overreact to the postponements – they just go with the flow,” Thompson explained.
“They are philosophical about it all because unfortunately they are used to these sorts of things, but it is always disappointing when games don’t go ahead as planned.”
He added, “It certainly doesn’t help with the continuity of our preparation. The players are focused on the next game and then there is a two week break and the focus can get lost a little bit.”
“We had a good pre-season because I made sure we played regularly but, in the season, we haven’t had that and it can be difficult for the girls to get back into the swing of things.”
The problem recurred last weekend, with the scheduled Friday night match against Brisbane Olympic postponed at the eleventh hour due to rainfall.
The timing of the postponements affected Thompson’s preparation – with the winless Olympic posing a significantly different test to the high-flying Souths.
“If had known (about the postponement) on Thursday afternoon, we probably would’ve trained a little bit differently on Thursday night,” Thompson said.
“We worked on playing Olympic last week but now our next game is against Souths, so it does mess the preparations about a bit.”
However, Thompson acknowledged the previous hit-out against Souths – which ended with the teams locked at nil-all approaching the half-hour – means he now has greater insight into his next opponents.
“There were some things we saw in that first thirty minutes that were quite interesting and we’ve talked about that and worked out ways to deal with it.”
“I’m quite looking forward to having a second chance at it, but, I dare say, they will likely make a few changes based on what we were doing also,” he concluded.
The match will be City’s first since their last-start seven goal home defeat at the hands of competition leaders Peninsula Power – their heaviest defeat of the season thus far.
PlayStation 4 NPL Women’s Queensland 2017 – Round 6 (rescheduled)
Tuesday, May 23 | 7:15pm
Wakerley Park, Runcorn
Gold Coast City FC Women’s Squad: 1. Ellen HEPBURN (gk), 2. Teleya REYNOLDS, 3. Georgia ELLISTON, 4. Lily LOWE, 6. Neesa DOYLE, 9. Brie BOND, 10. Jayde LOWE, 11. Jamilla RILEY (c), 12. Joy FORSYTH, 13. Emily BENTON, 14. Courtney BLACK
Substitutes: 7. Ena TSUZUMI, 8. Charlotte RAYNOR, 20. Emily ANDERSON