A top-of-the-table meeting between the teams means that this clash – always a highlight on the fixture list – will take on added importance.
Sydney FC v Canberra United
Saturday 5 November 2011
Leichhardt Oval, Sydney
Local kick-off: 3pm
A top-of-the-table meeting between the teams means that this clash – always a highlight on the fixture list – will take on added importance. Traditionally it is Sydney who would have the upper hand, but this time United are in pole position as the only team with a perfect record after two matches. A win here would provide Canberra with a massive jump on their rivals in the abbreviated 12-round season. It would also be a measure of revenge for a comprehensive semi-final defeat against the Sky Blues the season before last.
For the first time in their short history, Canberra have won both opening matches to a W-League season with Jitka Klimkova-s side hitting the ground running after a solid pre-season. The Czech coach has quality in all positions across the park, nowhere more so than attack. The prolific Michelle Heyman has bagged five already, the always enterprising Caitlin Munoz has scored twice, while new American signing Taryn Hemmings is already shaping as one of the league-s best new recruits.
Unusually Sydney coach Alen Stajcic has only limited attacking options to choose from for this key match-up. American superstar Megan Rapinoe has finished her all-too-brief cameo in Australia, goal-sneak Leena Khamis remains in Denmark, while player of the year Kyah Simon is still many weeks away from an injury return. On the positive side, Stajcic will be aiming to get more minutes from Heather Garriock and Caitlin Foord who both came off the bench last weekend. Youngster Foord looked particularly potent in her half-hour on the park, setting up the winner for Rapinoe.