Adelaide United have looked good for a historic finals berth all season, but suddenly their campaign comes down to 90 minutes against one of the best teams in the competition.
Adelaide, who have previously never made the finals, have been sitting in fourth for much of the season. But Brisbane Roar’s late rails-run pushed the Lady Reds out of a play-off position in the penultimate round.
Now Adelaide face the fairly daunting task of needing to end Canberra’s ten-round undefeated streak if they are to have a hope of collecting a finals ticket.
In the event of a tie on points, the higher position will be decided on goal difference, then goals for, and then a countback based on direct results between the teams involved.
On paper all the signs point to the visitors. Canberra recorded a hefty win over Adelaide last month, and the pair have endured contrasting results over the past month or so.
History offers little solace for the home side. Adelaide have won just two of 11 matches against the team from the nation’s capital.
Canberra will also be boosted by the return of star duo Lydia Williams and Michelle Heyman – both of whom were both rested last weekend - while Jenna McCormick will be returning to her home town.
Nevertheless, an entertaining contest is in the offing at Adelaide Shores, where the atmosphere for evening matches is always extra special.
Adelaide United v Canberra United
Friday 15 January 2016
Adelaide Shores Football Centre
Local kick-off: 7pm (7.30pm AEDT)
Join the conversation on Twitter using match hashtag #ADLvCBR
* Listen LIVE on Radio Italiana 531 from 6:30pm local time on 531AM or online at www.radioitaliana531.com.au
Adelaide United squad: 1. Kaitlyn Savage (gk), 2. Lauren Steer, 3. Alexandra Gummer, 4. Sarah Killion, 5. Allira Toby, 6. Chantelle Ryder, 8. Emily Condon, 10. Georgia Campagnale, 11. Rosie Sutton, 12. Elizabeth Milne (c), 13. Abbigail Dahlkemper, 15. Matilda McNamara, 17. Tiarn Powell, 18. Lorena Maggio, 20. Claudia Jenkins (gk), 21. Isabel Hodgson
Ins – Tiarn Powell (returns from injury)
Outs – none
Unavailable: Marijana Rajcic (knee – season)
Canberra United squad: 1. Lydia Williams (gk), 2. Catherine Brown, 3. Julia De Angelis, 4. Kendall Fletcher, 5. Jenna McCormick, 6. Caitlin Munoz, 7. Ellie Brush, 10. Grace Maher, 11. Michelle Heyman, 13. Nicole Begg (c), 14. Ashleigh Sykes, 16. Tegan Riding, 17. Veronica Perez, 18. Rebecca Kiting, 19. Nickoletta Flannery, 20. Melissa Maizels (gk)
Ins: Grace Maher, Nickoletta Flannery, Michelle Heyman, Lydia Williams (all promoted)
Outs: Meg McLaughlin, Grace Gill (both omitted), Emma Kete (New Zealand international duty)
Unavailable: Emma Checker (knee – season)