NPL Preview: Must win matches for Mariners Academy


It’s another weekend of must win games for both the women’s and men’s Academy sides. The women take on Gladesville Ravens in the women’s semi final while the men host Blacktown Spartans at Pluim Park.

Gladesville Ravens vs. Central Coast Mariners Academy Women

Sunday afternoon sees the third encounter between Gladesville Ravens and the Mariners this season with this match being the pick of the three.

Sunday is the minor semi final of the NPL 2 and Dan Barrett’s girls will be heading into this game full of confidence after their extra time victory over Nepean. The Yellow and Navy have become a formidable force throughout the year and increasingly been tough to beat in important matches. A major part of the Mariners success has been the combination between Gabrielle Blanch and Danielle Wise which has been devastating to their opponents.

Gladesville were defeated in the first round of the finals so they have activated their second chance of the series. Strikeforce Emily Diaz and Annalise Schiraldi pose a giant threat with 35 goals between the pair.

The winner of this final will go on to play the loser of APIA Leichhardt and Sutherland Shire next week while the loser is eliminated. The girls hold a slight advantage over the Ravens having not lost in their previous two meetings during the season.

Last week’s academy side: Rhiannon Hines (GK), Gabrielle Blanch (c), Leisel Collins, Nina Collins, Jordyn Drysdale, Jade Mcatamney, Kaitlin Murphy, Elizabeth Shorter, Iona Snape, Mikala Tucker, Danielle Wise

Match Details
Sunday, 18 August 2019
NSW NPL 2 Women’s Semi Final
Gladesville Ravens vs. Central Coast Mariners Academy Women
Venue: Valentine Sports Park, Glenwood
Kick Off: 3:45

Junior Grades:
U15s vs. SD Raiders – 10:00am (Sunday)
U17s vs. Gladesville Ravens – 11:45am (Sunday)
Reserve Grade vs. Marconi Stallions – 1:30pm (Sunday)

Central Coast Mariners Academy vs. Blacktown Spartans

Both teams with finals aspirations meet at Pluim Park on Sunday afternoon in a season defining clash.

Nick Montgomery’s men sit only just four points behind the Spartans and with just two games to go, anything other than three points is the season over for the Mariners. The men are riding a wave of form right now and have defeated two top six clubs in the last two weeks. The recent form has seen the Mariners Academy jump to third on the Club Championship, even on points with rivals Hills United.

Blacktown know that a win for them could all but secure a finals appearance for them depending on the Northern Tigers result. However, recent history is against the Spartans as they are winless in five previous outings against the Mariners. Connor Eldridge is the sides top scorer with 10 for the season and can prove to be a threat to the yellow and navy’s backline.

The sides previous meeting this season saw the Mariners run out 5-1 victors with Jordan Smylie bagging a hat trick. It is going to be a fiery encounter come Sunday with the season on the line for both teams.

Last week’s academy side: Aidan Munford (GK), Maximilien Balard, James Bayliss, Dan Hall, Matthew Hatch, Joey Jevtic, Kyle Johnson, Michael Katsoulis, Jordan Smylie, Aidan Taouil, Cameron Windust

Match Details
Sunday, 18 August 2019
NSW NPL 2 Round 25
Gladesville Ravens vs. Central Coast Mariners Academy Women
Venue: Pluim Park
Kick Off: 3:00pm