PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES
Melbourne Victory FC v Newcastle Jets FC
4pm, Sunday 13th November
Overall Head to Head:
Newcastle Jets FC 2
Melbourne City FC 9
Round 3: Melbourne Victory FC 0 Newcastle Jets FC 1 (Logarzo 45’) at John Ilhan Memorial Reserve.
Round 12: Newcastle Jets FC 0 Melbourne Victory FC 1 (Dowie 13’) at McDonald Jones Stadium.
Where they sit on the Ladder:
Melbourne Victory FC 5th (1pt)
Newcastle Jets 8th (0pts)
Past 2016/17 W-League Starts:
Victory – Drew Adelaide 3-3 (a)
Jets – Lost City 0-1 (a)
It was the match-up last season which all but ended Newcastle’s finals hopes, when they came up against the bottom-placed Melbourne Victory in round 12 at McDonald Jones Stadium. Natasha Dowie was the difference that afternoon with a brilliant lob from outside the box to win the match 1-0 for the visitors.
While across seasons some things differ, many stay the same and it will be Dowie once again this weekend who the Jets will have to be wary of. The former English international with five goals for her country was back on the scoresheet, not once, but twice in round one of the Westfield W-League against Adelaide United and she will be looking to cause more pain for the Jets this weekend at the Lakeside Stadium.
Historically, it has been the Victory who have had the upper hand in this clash, winning nine of their 12 meetings, however, in the last two seasons, Newcastle has turned that statistic around somewhat winning two of their last four meetings.
In Melbourne, the sides have played seven times with Victory winning six and losing one. The Jets sole win in Melbourne over the history of the competition came last season in round three, with Chloe Logarzo scoring the only goal of the match – a player who will be missing for the Jets until at least the end of the month due to playing commitments in Europe.
Victory started the season with a 3-3 draw against Adelaide, in a thrilling match for the neutrals. Melbourne was behind 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 before each time fighting back to level the pulsating contest at Coopers Stadium. Along with Natasha Dowie grabbing a brace, substitute Selin Kuralay also grabbed a goal to level the contest a 3-3.
For the Jets, they went down to Melbourne City 1-0 last weekend, in a tough contest. There is little cause for concern after coming up against one of the best sides in the competition – a side that still has not lost a Westfield W-League match. While coach Craig Deans has done wonders over the last one and a bit seasons with Newcastle’s defence, it’s in front of goal where the improvement is needed and the statistics show the Jets created plenty of chances on the weekend.
Newcastle asked plenty of questions of City’s defence on Sunday with 12 shots on goal to Melbourne’s five, however, Newcastle could only manage three on target to the home side’s two. New signings Jen Hoy and Emma Stanbury led the line for the Jets on Sunday and their combination can only improve over the coming weeks.
In a boost for the visitors Clare Wheeler and Sophie Nenadovic will return from international duty, after the Young Matildas qualified for the 2017 Asian Cup last weekend bringing plenty of W-League experience back into the side.
For the Victory Annabel Martin and Melinda Barbieri return as well, after also playing for the Young Matildas.
Key: Can Newcastle make their chances count this weekend?