What to watch for: City v Western United

Currently perfect for the season and sitting pretty on top of the A-League Women’s table, City’s girls are preparing for their first match at AAMI Park of the 2022/23 campaign.

Dario Vidosic’s team have been strong at both ends of the pitch but will face their biggest challenge thus far, an also perfect Western United.

Here’s a few things to keep an eye out for on Saturday evening.

Goals, goals, goals

Although City may have played one less match than over half the teams in the competition, it still stands well clear of any team in terms of goals scored.

Plenty of new faces have come into the fold this season, particularly in the attacking third, but that certainly hasn’t translated to any teething issues. The team is well and truly firing on all cylinders with four goals against Wellington, three against Brisbane and five against Newcastle.

New recruits Bryleeh Henry and Maria Jose Rojas have been leading the charge, scoring in each of City’s three games so far this season.

Emina Ekic and Rhianna Pollicina have also both been dangerous, finding the back of the net twice.

Rock solid defence set to continue?

City’s defence has been just as impressive as its attack, allowing just two goals this season.

An unlucky deflection in Round 1 and a Tara Andrews header last weekend is all that’s gotten past Sally James so far, with the young keeper pulling off some strong saves, as has the experienced and ultra-reliable Melissa Barbieri when she’s been between the sticks.

New Zealand international Katie Bowen and 18-year-old Naomi Chinnama have been rock solid in the heart of defence, while Julia Grosso and Kaitlyn Torpey have done a mountain of work up and down the pitch as full-backs.

Is it Checker time?

After returning to Melbourne with a lingering knee injury, captain Emma Checker has been slowly but surely building her fitness.

She missed Round 1 entirely but made a comeback in our second fixture playing 20 minutes, before being subbed on for the entire second half last time out.

That natural progression would suggest she’d be close to full fitness come Saturday as City fans eagerly await the skippers return to the starting XI.

That being said, it’ll force Vidosic into a tough selection call given the strong performances of City’s back four so far this season.