The games to watch in this weekend’s Women’s National League

posted in: News

By Jack Sharp

Two games this weekend could play a major part in how the rest of the season rolls out for the National Women’s League.

With the four Auckland clubs looking dominant in the opening two rounds, we’ll learn plenty from the two games in which the top three sides are involved.

Main photo: Canterbury United Pride … can ill afford to fall behind the leaders.

Canterbury United Pride v Eastern Suburbs

Six-time national champions Canterbury United Pride badly need to beat early leaders Eastern Suburbs if they are to join the race for the title.

Win and they’ll go level on points with the Lilywhites.

Lose and Pride will be six points off the pace after only three rounds.

The Suburbs team, who struggled early this year in their regional Women’s Premier League, have got stronger week by week and they now look formidable at this level.

Striker Tayla O’Brien has scored seven goals in two outings and Canterbury will know they can’t afford to give her free rein at English Park on Sunday.

Suburbs will be without Olivia Page and Zoe Benson who are off to India for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup.

My prediction: 2-1 to Canterbury United Pride. When the chips are down, champions rise up.

Auckland United v Western Springs

These cross-town rivals meet in Saturday’s only WNL fixture, having both started their seasons unbeaten.

It’s early season but this game already smacks of being a six-pointer, especially if another round of results produces more evidence that the title will be a scramble between the Auckland clubs.

Both sides have been finding the net with ease but they’ll find it more difficult against each other.

Auckland United will be missing three players who are all on international duty at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in India — Milly Clegg, Ruby Nathan and goalkeeper Aimee Danieli.

Springs will miss the speed of winger Lara Colpi, also away with the Young Ferns.

My prediction: 1-1 in a match that could go either way.


Game to be played on Saturday October 1, 2022

Auckland United v Western Springs
Keith Hay Park, Mt Roskill, 4pm (kick off delayed from 3pm)

Games to be played on Sunday October 2, 2022

Capital Football v Southern United
Petone Memorial Park, Petone, 3pm

Central Football v Northern Rovers
Massey University, Palmerston North, 2.15pm

Canterbury United Pride v Eastern Suburbs
English Park, Christchurch, 2.45pm


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