Perth Glory preview

We run the rule over Perth Glory’s prospects for this season’s Westfield W-League.

Perth Glory have a mixed history in the Westfield W-League. They have finished in the bottom reaches of the ladder on several occasions, but also won the premiership two years ago following a second-placed finish two years prior. After a disappointing eighth-placed finish last term the Glory will be seeking to rebound and reach the finals for the third time.

This season
There has been a significant amount of player turnover in the west for coach Bobby Despotovski to deal with. Caitlin Foord’s return to her home state is a major blow, but there is plenty of experienced personnel on deck in her stead. US-based pair Alyssa Mautz, Arianna Romero have arrived, while Vanessa DiBernardo and Nicole Stanton are also back from the States for a second stint. If the Glory’s key players can stay fit, they are more than capable of doing some damage this season.

The captain
Sam Kerr has been a fixture in the Westfield W-League since debuting as a precocious 15-year in the first-ever season of the competition. Aside from a few years at Sydney FC, Kerr has proudly donned the Glory colours, and is now in her second season as captain. As a regular for the Westfield Matildas, Kerr follows in the footsteps of retired Western Australia greats Kate Gill and Collette McCallum. And Kerr, after missing a large chunk of last season through injury, is in bullish mood ahead of the new campaign.

“We’ll be disappointed if we don’t make the top four,” she said. “The W-League is such a short season and anything can change. We’re obviously excited. Everyone’s fit and ready to get the season started.”

First match: v Western Sydney Wanderers, nib Stadium, Perth, Sunday 6 November, 6.30pm (local)
(Hyundai A-League double-header)

Ins: Alyssa Mautz (Chicago Red Stars, USA), Arianna Romero (IBV, Iceland), Jaymee Gibbons, Melissa Maizels (Canberra United), Rosie Sutton (Adelaide United), Abby Meakins, Roisin Connolly, Patricia Charalambous, Natasha Rigby

Outs: Mackenzie Arnold (Brisbane Roar), Katie Holtham, Danielle Brogan, Katie Schubert, Ella Mastrantonio, Shannon May, Caitlin Foord (Sydney FC), Ellie Lamonte