Merewether United have come roaring back to life in the Women’s Premier League after two weeks of big losses, and zero balls in the back of the net.
The Round 10 clash at Thornton Park saw fierce striker Courtney Anderson jump into the spotlight with two goals for Merewether, setting the pace for their much-needed victory.
“Courtney Anderson had a fantastic game. She has been one of our most consistent performers all year and worked really, really hard today, applying pressure to their defence,” United boss Cass Koppen said. “I think she is a really difficult player for defenders because she is strong in both attack and defence.”
According to Koppen, the team desperately needed a win to move from the fifth spot on the ladder. The coach was pleased with the girl’s performance overall but said they must lift their intensity if they want to make it to the finals.
“This year there is a number of different teams capable of earning a top-four spot,” she said. “We did respond well but we still have a bit to work on. We have to be able to stay switched on for the whole 90 minutes and we only did for about 70 minutes today.
“Obviously we will have to prove ourselves in the long term, but we spoke a lot about lifting the intensity, playing with more confidence and also having higher expectations of ourselves and of our teammates. I think we have just let our standards slip and that’s not something you can do if you want to be in the top of the league.”
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Thornton’s Ainsleigh Childs did manage to secure a goal in the second half, with Nikita Bestwick falling just short of an equaliser at 2-1. Redbacks mentor Alan Primmer said the miss could have changed the entire outcome of the game.
“We were that half shin pad away from 2-all,” he said. “They were really rocky after 2-1, but we gave away that third goal and suddenly three became five like it often does this year.”
United players Tayla Braithwaite, Tamara Nash, and 14-year-old Emma Allen scored the remaining three goals, confirming the Llama’s win.
“I think it’s a good confidence boost for us,” Koppen said. “Our performance was much improved, the intensity was a lot higher and players started taking it upon themselves to improve their individual performance. I’m happy considering last week’s result.”
Also on Sunday afternoon, South Wallsend scored their fourth win in a row as they downed Adamstown 6-2, while Wallsend went down 4-1 to second-placed Warners Bay. New Lambton and Mid North Coast’s clash was postponed due to wet weather, with a rescheduled match date yet to be confirmed.
TABLE: New Lambton (24), Warners Bay (21), South Wallsend (18), Wallsend, Merewether (15), Mid North Coast (6), Adamstown, Thornton (0).