Match reports 30 April 2023: Puddles for days!
Updated: May 8
ANUWFC 1 - Olympic FC 2
State League 1
ANUWFC 4 - Western Molonglo 0
It rained …. A lot.
We tried something new and it worked out for us. Lena scored 2 and the ref thinks Indi and Julia scored 1 each but I think technically they should both be counted towards Julia. Considering the ball stopped dead on the goal line and Julia followed it up to make sure the net bulged.
Our defence did really well to keep a clean sheet but also a little luck helped. As a shot from Weston beat Dani our fill in keeper (thanks Dani) but the ball stopped dead in a puddle on the goal line, Margaux did the right thing and continued to play the ball while Weston expressed their displeasure claiming it was a goal.
I think they forgot the whole ball needs to cross the line for it to count. Anyway we won 4-0 and I’m still trying to get dry.
State League 2
State League 3
ANUWFC 0 - BelSouth 1
Play was abandoned, and rightly so. The conditions drastically deteriorated in the second half that left the referee with no other choice but to stop play.
At that point we were one nil down due to a very good strike by the Belsouth Player. We had good moments of play and in the first and second half got in behind the opposition’s backline.
I look forward to our next encounter on a dry pitch. Our passing game at times in these conditions was better.
Shoutout to Nivea who saved a couple of good attempts, before stoppage. However, my player of the match up to that point was Kayla Cook who was strong and covered well in defence.
State League 4 Strollers
ANUWFC 9 - South Canberra 0
It was a wet and dreary day as the Strollers took the pitch for their first ever home game. Given the weather, the team will have to wait until another day to test out their actual home ground - South Oval, but Willows stood up against the driving rain.
To stave off injury, several Strollers could be found warming up pre-match, which created a weird vibe amongst the team. Sideline spectators were quite confused at the sight and rumours of borrowed players not used to standard pre-match procedures were rife.
On pitch, the ball slid faster than a child escaping their parents’ clutches at tooth brushing time, and the pace took some time to get used to. Never ones to let a bit of erratic play phase them, the Strollers defended well before settling in to their usual smooth style of play.
Sarah, hereafter referred to as Harry Hattrick, kicked off the scoring with a beautiful crack to the left of the keeper.
Shortly after, Clare sent the ball off the inside of her left foot (absolutely, definitely not the toe) and it sailed into the top corner.
From there, the team took attacking to a new level, with Harry scoring another two and Clare nabbing another one.
Half time didn’t change the determination of the Strollers, who added another four goals - from Merissa, Kate, Steph, and Lauren D. Rumour / the match card has it that Carrie scored, however given she wasn’t available for today’s match, this seems unlikely!
Passing - particularly out of the backline, and into the goal box - was on point, with the team clearly taking inspiration from Ted Lasso, the Matilda’s docco, and replays of Bayern Munich’s recent matches. The one-twos and run on passes were textbook football that wouldn’t have looked out of place in a national team.
The defence were solid as a rock and gave CC very little to do - particularly in the second half. Some took the opportunity to have a run up the pitch, with Lauren S and Jacqui very nearly joining the list of goal scorers.
Despite the conditions, it was a stellar day out for the Strollers, and a true team effort. Everyone played their part and had a hand (foot?) in the goals.
BY THE NUMBERS
Score: ANUWFC 9 - South Canberra 0
Amount of rain: 97ml
Temperature of post-match showers: 97 degrees
Depth of team: Considerable
State League 4 Runaways
State League 5 Scooters
ANUWFC 5 - Canberra Croatia 1
“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass… It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” That’s the attitude the Scooters carried with them as they braved the conditions at Yarralumla against a stubborn Canberra Croatia Football Club (CCFC) side. Despite the heavy rains, none of the Scooters were deterred as we showed up for our away game with a full 16 on the match sheet along with injured players Caity and Con and a whole host of supporters with partners and family members who made their voices heard from the sideline for 90 minutes.
Whilst the Scooters had a full squad available, the same could not be said for CCFC as they played most of the game with only 10 players. However, as the adage goes, “You can only beat what’s in front of you” and it would been particularly easy for any team to underestimate their shorthanded opponents, but football history is littered with David v Goliaths and anyone can win in 90 minutes. It’s why we love the beautiful game.
The Scooters started the game strong as Penny tested the CCFC keeper early with a shot on target inside 6 minutes before Emily B blazed down the right wing and had another shot on target at the 12-minute mark. Indeed, it appeared it might be one of those games where the opposition keeper does her best Lydia Williams impersonation and thwarts the Scooters every effort. The rain did make it difficult for both keepers to hold onto shots and our forwards, particularly Beth and Sarah, did well to react inside the box but again the opposition keeper smothered the crumbs well. How many times in football do you see a team have early opportunities but not capitalise only to get hit on the counter? Making her season debut, Emily T stepped into the heart of the defence next to Tash and later Kirsten and Gini and our defence dealt with the rare opposition counters well and helped to recycle possession to launch our own attacks with. I suffered a mini heart attack in the first half as the referee (yes, we had an official referee omg, poor guy was also freezing by the end of the game) blew his whistle and all of a sudden Elise our goalkeeper was taking off her gloves and goalie shirt and was being ordered off the field after having just innocently picked up a loose through ball in her box. I feared the worst, what did she do?? As Charlotte immediately donned the gloves and shirt, Elise trudged off the field towards me sheepishly, turns out she wasn’t wearing any shin pads. As punishment/reward, she got to wear my pair of sweaty shin pads that I had just worn for my game prior. Crisis averted; Elise jumped back on immediately in goals. Kudos to Charlotte who just jumped straight into Elise’s considerable shoes... er gloves, without question even though Charlotte probably ended up being more troubled by the change of shirt than any shots.
The deadlock was broken when Emily B was released down the right flank and she was able to get beyond the opposition full back and place a ball across goal, just past the keepers reach, and while it just eluded Beth and Sarah in the middle, Rose popped in at the back post to give the Scooters the lead in the 16th minute! The goal settled any nerves and having just taken the lead, it was crucial to keep the pressure up on CCFC. This was exactly where having a full 16 and a well-rounded squad comes in handy as subs were made to keep players as fresh (and warm) as possible. Despite the waterlogged pitch, our wingers were on fire all game and consistently took on their opposite number and won their individual duels. Emily B and Rose had already combined for the first goal and then it was Sophie’s turn to show her pace and nose for goal as she beat two players down the left flank before cutting in onto her right foot and scoring in the 26th minute. From the opposite wing, Gini was played in behind the CCFC backline before cutting the ball back across goal, finding Sophie again who provided a composed finish. 3-0 at the 37-minute mark. The Scooters were able to see out the rest of the half as our midfield comprised of Rhiannon, Penny, Sarah, Saf and Tash hassled and harried the opponents, giving CCFC no time in possession. In particular, Penny found time on the ball to provide plenty of good through balls and consistently provided a shield for the defence in a game where counters would be dangerous and Saf led our press from the front which resulted in plenty of turnovers in the opposition half leading to good opportunities. Overall, on a day like this, it was so important for the midfielders to keep tracking back to help provide cover for the defenders as well as push up to support the attack, which is difficult enough on a good day on a great field, let alone playing in the horrendous rain on a soggy field.
If you needed proof for how miserable Sunday was
We took the 3-0 lead into the changing rooms, yes there were changing rooms! Spirits were high and no one had suffered frostbite or hypothermia yet! Our objective for the second half was to not give CCFC any chance of getting back into the game. Credit to the CCFC coach and team as they showed no sign of giving up despite being a player down for the entire game. They came out with a clear game plan in the second half. Tale as old as time, route one football can be as effective as any Pep-inspired tactical innovation. CCFC peppered our backline with balls over the top which Kirsten and Gini, two of our most experienced defenders, dealt with calmly in centreback. The Scooters kept up the pressure though with Zoe B having an amazing shot from distance on target saved by the keeper. Inspired by a recent training session, Claire was placed in the midfield as her pace and directness was complemented well by Sarah’s ability to hold onto possession and drive forward and Rhiannon’s disciplined style and penchant for a tackle. Especially in a game like this it was important to have a rotation in midfield to keep control of this game. Still, CCFC kept coming and despite Elise making 2 amazing one-on-one saves to deny CCFC on separate occasions, CCFC were rewarded for their pressure as a slip by a defender meant that CCFC were through on goal and blasted home from a few meters out leaving Elise no chance to save.
I personally believe in co-suffering.
3-1. Panic could have set in, but we weren’t at the disco, we were on a football field. The Scooters rallied and whilst we changed our shape to provide more cover at the back and utilised our amazing depth and quality, we still looked to play it forward when we could. So, it was more a minibus that we parked, with Gini dropping down from striker to come in as a sweeper leaving us with no striker up top. It may sound counterintuitive but going more defensive made us more offensive as we were able to control the ball more and carve out opportunities on the counter. On the 80th minute mark, Kirsten released Rose down the right flank at about halfway and Rose evaded 2 defenders and was through on goal and ended any slim chances of a CCFC comeback with a sublime finish. We kept up the pressure and had a corner on the 83rd minute and despite holding players back, Tash dropped in a delicious corner that was expertly finished first time by Saf!
5-1 win, onto our next opponent! Scoot scoot!!
Goals: Rose X2, Sophie X2, Saf
Assists: Emily B, Gini, Tash
State League 5 Suban
ANUWFC 3 - BelSouth 0
State League 6 Sharkies
ANUWFC 0 - BelWest Foxes 2
State League 6 Kartapillars