Semi-final ambitions may be over for both of these teams but an uncompromising and hard-fought contest remains on offer for fans in Sydney’s west.
Both Western Sydney Wanderers and Perth Glory have endured erratic campaigns, with some impressive results mixed with modest showings.
The eighth-placed Wanderers sit two points and one position behind the Glory. Such is the tight mid-table competition these two can end the season just a win outside the finals, depending on the result here.
It is the first meeting between the two this season, but historically contests between the pair have been well-matched, with two wins for the home team and four for the visitors.
Both teams have suffered from injuries this season. The Wanderers hope to welcome back the club’s most capped player Linda O’Neill after several weeks on the sideline.
But it is the Glory who have arguably been the unluckiest team in the competition on the injury front. Their Westfield Matildas trio of Samantha Kerr, Mackenzie Arnold and Caitlin Foord will again all be missing this weekend.
Midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo has impressively stepped into the breach for the Glory. The American scored twice in last weekend’s drought-ending 2-1 win over Adelaide United, and she now has nabbed more goals than the rest of the team combined.
“Last weekend’s game was fun for all of us,” said DiBernardo. “We’ve been struggling with injuries, but just getting that win felt good for all of us.
“What we’ve faced this season hasn’t been your normal season, but a win to end it would leave us all pretty happy.”
Western Sydney Wanderers v Perth Glory
Sunday 17 January 2016
Popondetta Park, Sydney
Local kick-off: 3pm
Join the conversation on Twitter using match hashtag #WSWvPER
Western Sydney Wanderers squad: 1. Teagan Micah (gk), 2. Caitlin Cooper, 3. Carmelina Moscato, 4. Chloe O’Brien, 6. Rachael Soutar, 8. Erica Halloway, 9. Elizabeth Grey, 10. Michelle Carney, 11. Keelin Winters (c), 12. Hannah Beard, 13. Eliza Ammendolia, 14. Demi Koulizakis, 15. Ellie Carpenter, 16. Linda O’Neill, 17. Alix Roberts, Lisa Farrington (gk)
Ins: Linda O’Neill (returns from injury), Alix Roberts, Lisa Farrington, Demi Koulizakis (all promoted)
Outs: Kendall Johnson (injury – 1 week), Jada Whyman (injury – 1 week), Helen Petinos (omitted)
Perth Glory squad: 18. Gabrielle Dal Busco (gk), 2. Sarah Carroll, 3. Kim Carroll (c), 4. Katie Holtham, 5. Shannon May, 6. Carla Bennett, 7. Nicole Stanton, 8. Shawn Billam, 11. Emily Henderson, 12. Katie Schubert, 13. Danielle Brogan, 14. Caitlin Doeglas, 16. Thia Eastman, 22. Evangeline Gooch (gk), 23. Vanessa DiBernardo
Ins: Katie Holtham, Danielle Brogan (both return from injury)
Outs: Ella Mastrantonio (suspended), Angelique Stannett (omitted)
Unavailable: Samantha Kerr (foot), Mackenzie Arnold (quadricep), Caitlin Foord (collarbone)