Westfield W-League: mid-season report card

We've reached the halfway point of an intriguing 10th season as three teams sit atop the league on 12 points.

Glory, Jets and Roar are all jostling for top spot heading into Round 7, with identical win/loss/draw stats (W4, D0, L2)  while it’s tight below them with just six points separating fourth from ninth spot.

It's been an entertaining season with many of our Matildas and foreign signings showing their quality across the league.

Aidan Ormond has the report card after seven rounds.

PERTH GLORY

Ladder position: first

Some classy international players have added genuine quality, and they are great to watch.

Plus, with American Rachel Hill and Sam Kerr up front, they complement each other really well and are scoring goals for fun. What a front two. 

Glory have scored more than any other team (15). 

Add to that, Costa Rican midfielder Raquel Rodriguez, who brings something different, and with Nikki Stanton coming back in after injury, they are set up well for second half of the season.

They have done as well as expected. And expectations were high. All is on track for another strong finals run. 

Report card mark: A

Perth Glory celebrate

 

NEWCASTLE JETS

Ladder position: second

Coach Craig Deans has done an amazing job with this team.

He’s set up their defensive structures and allowed the Jets the freedom to play an attacking style with a really solid structure in defence, very similar to the Westfield Matildas.

Jenna Kingsley has always been a talent, Arin Gilliland is all class and having the hugely influential Emily van Egmond in the middle of the park, she has gone to another level with her leadership. 

Jets are in a good position to make the finals after a first half of the season that's mirrored their Hyundai A-League side.

In the past they have struggled to score goals but they are doing that now.

If they continue to play the football they are, there’s no reason why they can’t make the finals.

For such a football hotbed, it'll be fabulous for the region if they can make a dent on the finals this year. 

Report card mark: A

Newcastle Jets celebrate

 

BRISBANE ROAR

Ladder position: third

With five Matildas in their squad, little wonder expectations were high before the season. 

Two big losses to Glory and Jets (both in Brisbane) dampened spirits, but other than that, Roar have looked like their old self. 

They are playing an attractive brand of football but they have struggled to score freely with the lowest number of goals scored of the three top sides (7).   

In central defence, Clare Polkinghorne is probably in career best form. She's such a smart defender with all that experience.

Raso, Butt, Gielnik have been good, Allira Toby is a handful and Macca Arnold is a great keeper, but Katrina Gorry has been amazing. 

"Mini" has been a shining light and few teams have worked out how to curtail her influence on games. 

And on to top it all off, on the sidelines coach Mel Andreatta is all passion - her reaction to goals  are superb to watch. 

Last weekend was a rare off day for the Roar. Other than that, it's been a good season so far. 

Report card mark: A-

Brisbane Roar

 

MELBOURNE CITY

Ladder position: fourth

City have set some very high standards over the last two years. So they won’t be happy with fourth on the ladder.

And it says much about the overall standard of the league that they have been pulled back into the pack.

They keep possession well and have a large Matildas contingent (Simon, Kennedy, Catley, Williams, Crummer),  but have conceded more goals (11) than anticipated. 

That said, with Jess Fishlock, they have a true match winner as shown by last week’s superb brace against Canberra.

It’d be a brave person to say this team won’t be around the finals.

Report card mark: B-

City Matildas

 

SYDNEY FC

Ladder position: fifth

A slow start had a few Sky Blue fans worried. 

It took them a while to find their groove but with a tough pre-season that might be something that could work in their favour at the back end of the season.

They are in a good position in fourth spot, and despite having a really slow start to the season they have made up ground. 

And Amy Harrison has been outstanding. 

The Sky Blues are finding form and with their fitness and a host of really good players (De Vanna, Logarzo, Ibini, Siemsen) could be a dark horse.

Report card mark: B-

Sydney FC

 

CANBERRA UNITED

Ladder position: sixth

Great potential with a smart young coach in Heather Garriock.

We haven’t seen their best just yet but this is a club that has a history of success. 

When Canberra get their playmaking midfielders on the ball, they’ll really hit their straps.

Their losses haven’t been big and with stars like Heyman and Sykes, United have goals in them. 

Report card mark: C

Canberra United

 

MELBOURNE VICTORY

Ladder position: seventh

Victory's Natasha Dowie will rival Sam Kerr for the golden boot.

She always finds the back of the net, she’s a really smart striker and always finds herself in the right positions.

The Englishwoman just needs more attacking options around her.

When that happens, look out.

Defensively Victory have been solid (8 conceded), but they need to find more attacking options. 

They’ve got a star of the future in Kyra Cooney-Cross, but she’s still developing her prodigous talents.

Overall, defensively they have been good and when they produce more attacking options to support Dowie, they’ll have a strong second half of the season.

Report card mark: C

Victory women

 

WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS

Ladder position: eighth

There’s a lot of passion and pride within that club. They have just struggled for consistency and mostly they have struggled for goals with just five for the season (a league lowest). 

Many players are probably still trying to find their feet in the league, but Ellie Brush has been a good addition and she’s a favourite just for the wholehearted effort she brings, while Jada Whyman overall has been excellent in goals despite her relative youth.

They have just struggled to put teams under pressure consistently. But that will come in time.

Report card mark: C-

Wanderers v Roar on Friday night

 

ADELAIDE UNITED

Ladder position: ninth

It’s great they have a world class striker like Makenzy Doniak. The US player has been top-shelf this season.

While they haven’t got the results they really do push teams and that’s a good sign.

Crucial mistakes in the backline at times have cost them dearly. They are a really dangerous team on the counter, they just haven’t been as consistent as they’d like.

The Lady Reds have got quite a young and inexperienced squad. They have some amazing talent but they just need that little bit more quality so they can start to consistently dominate sides and control the midfield.

Report card mark: C-

Adelaide United