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A-League Women’s Finals Series Gets Underway

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A League Womens Finals

The A-League Women’s finals series is set to get underway with premiers Sydney FC and Melbourne City going head-to-head for a spot in the grand final, while Adelaide United host Melbourne Victory in a do-or-die semi-final.

The new finals format rewards the two teams who finished first and second on the ladder, while it also extends the finals series by one week.

In the new format, first place Sydney FC will host second place Melbourne City to decide which team will proceed to the grand final, with the winner to also earn a weekend off in preparation for the big game.

The loser of the Sydney FC vs Melbourne City game will get a second chance and will play again next weekend against the winner of Adelaide United, who finished third, and Melbourne Victory, who finished fourth.

The loser of the Adelaide vs Melbourne game will be knocked out of the finals.

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Sydney FC dominated throughout the 2021-2022 A-League Women’s regular season, finishing in first place and recorded just one loss with 11 wins and two draws in the fourteen-round campaign.

The Sky Blues claimed the Premiers Plate for a second consecutive season.

The only defeat suffered by Sydney FC was at the hands of Melbourne City who won 2-1 at home at AAMI Park on February 20.

Sydney FC manager Ante Juric said his team will not be taking Melbourne City lightly and will be prepared for a tough battle.

“We always do video analysis on each side we play. We know we didn’t perform to our best last time we faced them but we know they won’t make it easy for us,” Juric said.

Sky Blues captain Nat Tobin, who has been at the club for 10 years, said it was an exciting feeling to win the Premiers Plate and her team’s focus will now turn to getting ‘revenge’ on Melbourne City.

“It’s so exciting. We have had the best season and to be rewarded for it is incredible and I’m so proud of the girls,” she told Paramount+ after Sydney FC defeated Adelaide United 1-0 in the last game of the regular season.

“We lost to City and that was the only team that defeated us this season, so I guess we want revenge in a way. We’re out to win.”

In a major boost for Sydney FC, the semi-final against Adelaide United will be played at home in Kogarah at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium. It will be the premiers’ first game in New South Wales since February 13 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the second semi-final, Melbourne Victory will be without star midfielder Kyra Cooney-Cross who will miss the match through suspension. 

Victory claimed fourth spot ahead of Perth Glory on goal difference after coming away with a 0-0 draw with Canberra United in the last game of the regular season. 

Victory goalkeeper Casey Dumont played her 50th league game for the club against Canberra and produced an excellent performance to keep a clean sheet to secure her team the point they needed to make the finals.

Victory coach Jeff Hopkins said his side would be well prepared for the game.

“We’ve had three good days of training so far. The quality of the training has been good, we got some tactical work in, worked on some of our general principles as well, around our defending and the players have responded really well so they’re looking like they’ve got a bit more energy,” he said.

Adelaide United will be heading into unknown territory as they prepare for their maiden appearance in the A-League Women’s finals series.

British striker Fiona Worts had an incredible season for Adelaide and scored 13 goals in just 14 games to become the club’s first-ever Golden Boot winner in the women’s competition.

Adelaide United manager Adrian Stenta is feeling confident ahead of the semi-final and said his team is coming into form at the right stage of the season.

“I’m really confident in this playing group, I’ve been confident in them for a while … and I feel like their confidence has grown as the season’s gone on as well,” Stenta said.

“To be gaining more confidence as the weeks have gone on, sort of peaking going into finals is a great position to be in.”

Picture of Joel Martelli
Joel Martelli
The only thing that Joel Martelli loves more than football (seriously, we wouldn't be surprised if he has a Wollongong Wolves tattoo) is writing about all things sports. With a Bachelor of Communications and Media Studies Degree specialising in Journalism, he spends his days uncovering breaking athlete news stories and diving deep into play-by-play strategies. We're glad that he's put his passion to the pages of Only Sports as one of our dedicated sports writers.

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