NPL Previews: Senior Men & Women


After scorching hot conditions postponed games for our senior academy men and women last weekend, both teams are ready to get back in action this weekend and we caught up with Will Vazquez & Dan Barrett to preview their respective fixtures.

The men’s and women’s academy first teams both remain undefeated heading into rounds three and four respectively. The men have a win and a draw to their name whilst the ladies are one win from one game so far (after both having a game postponed).

For the women’s team, we caught up with Head Coach Dan Barrett and with Wayne O’Sullivan currently appointed as Caretaker Coach for the Hyundai A-League side we spoke with Will Vazquez.

Central Coast Mariners Academy vs. Northern Tigers FC

With Wayne O’Sullivan stepping into the Caretaker Coaching role of the Hyundai A-League team, Vazquez says that it has had minimal disruption on the playing group.

“To be honest the players have handled it very well,” Vazquez said. “There has been little disruption, with the way we worked previously, Sully and I shared a lot, so it’s not a different voice it’s just a bit more of my voice. They’ve been really good and I’ve been very happy.

“My focus is on keeping my head down, working hard and doing my job. In the 18s, 20s and first team we work really closely with Peter Preston and now Ken Schembri who will help out a lot as well in this period.

“Jason Eagar [Tigers Head Coach] is a very good coach who has had a lot of success at this level and won multiple titles. His teams are always very well prepared, well structured, hard to beat and hard to score against – typically a hardworking unit. Having said that, it’s a challenge that will suit us because they like to play football and they’re not just there to bash us up.

“In terms of player availability, we’re looking really good, probably the best we’ve been this season. We’re working really hard on the conditioning of the bodies. We’re pretty much at full strength with the only one out being Liam Wilson who broke his leg in pre-season,” Vazquez said.

Match Details
Saturday, 24 March 2018
PS4 NPL 2 Round 4
Central Coast Mariners Academy vs. Northern Tigers FC
Venue: North Turramurra Recreation Area
Kick-off: 7:00pm (AEDT)

Central Coast Mariners Academy Women vs. Southern Branch FC Women

After a week off, Dan Barrett welcomes Georgia Davis back into his squad who are prepared to take on Southern Branch. Our girls play at Mingara and entry is FREE!

“We’ve taken the week to continue to ensure we progress from that first game,” Barrett said. “Missing a weekend of football has its positives and negatives but one positive that it does have, is that we some players returning who wouldn’t have been ready to play last weekend.

“Georgia Davis is one of those players, she is a big inclusion. She came into pre-season with an existing injury and we’ve managed that as best as we can to get her right but she’s trained the house down and done enough to get her start this weekend against Southern so we’re looking forward to seeing her this weekend. Georgia was a player that I heard a lot about prior to coming to the Mariners, she was one that was earmarked as one to watch. I’ve only seen her in training, but I like what I see, she’s steady on the ball and very solid defensively.

“At this stage of the season, it doesn’t matter who you’re playing because the focus is mostly on us and making sure we’re making inroads as to how we play as a team. We know we need to be at our best every week and that’s no different this week.

“For us, conditioning wise we just want to compete for the full 90 minutes – we need more games. We’ve had a big week this week, the weather has been Inclement but we’ve still trained and found ways to get miles into the legs to make sure we’re right for this week,” Barrett said.

Match Details
Sunday, 25 March 2018
PS4 NPL 2 Women Round 3
Match: Central Coast Mariners Academy vs. Southern Branch FC Women
Mingara, Tumbi Umbi
Kick-off: 3:00pm (AEDT)
Entry Fee: FREE!