Midweek match likely to feature players bound for FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup

Up to seven New Zealand U-20 internationals will be available for Wednesday night’s Central League clash between the Wellington Phoenix Reserves and Western Suburbs.

With many of the Phoenix players heading to Argentina for the FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup in two weeks, the Round 8 fixture has been brought forward to be played midweek under the lights at Fraser Park (7pm kick-off).

READ MORE: Coach Darren Bazeley announces squad for FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup >>>>

READ MORE: New Zealand to face six-time winners Argentina at FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup >>>>

Wednesday’s match brings together the teams placed second and third on the Central League table, both of whom are trying to catch runaway leaders Wellington Olympic.

The Phoenix squad is likely to include seven U-20 internationals in Alby Kelly-Heald, Ben Wallace, Fin Conchie, Finn Surman, Isaac Hughes, Lukas Kelly-Heald and Noah Karunaratne.

Main photo: Noah Karunaratne is fouled in New Zealand’s game against Solomon Islands at last year’s OFC U-19 Championship. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / Phototek.

Wellington Phoenix Reserves’ Fin Conchie palms off Auckland City’s Gerard Garriga during a Men’s National League fixture. Photo: Jackie Tran Van / Phototek.

The side will be without Dan McKay, another U-20 international, who is suspended after being given a straight red in the 17th minute of Phoenix’s 2-0 weekend win against Stop Out.

However, striker Josh Tollervey (19) becomes available for selection, having served a four-match ban.

Western Suburbs have started their season well, unbeaten in six games, and their goalscoring threat comes from leading scorer Ryan Feutz and Canadian import Kairo Coore.

Feutz (21) began his senior career at Suburbs before having stints with Auckland’s Eastern Suburbs, Swedish club Torslanda IK, Miramar Rangers and Wellington Olympic.

Since returning to Suburbs this year, he’s scored six goals in as many rounds, while newcomer Coore has contributed five.

READ MORE: Canadian recruits give Western Suburbs a boost for Central League campaign >>>>


Game to be played on Wednesday May 3, 2023

Wellington Phoenix Reserves v Western Suburbs
Fraser Park, Taita, 7pm


Last weekend’s results

Games played on Saturday April 29, 2023

Waterside Karori 2 (Tomas Alvarado 67′ pen, Jorge Akers 78′)
Western Suburbs 2 (Ihaia Delaney 35′ pen, Ryan Feutz 72′)

Whanganui Athletic 1 (Jordan Joblin-Hall 24′)
Napier City Rovers 5 (Christian Leopard 25′, Sam Lack 64′, Jonathan McNamara 80′, 83′, Deri Corfe 90+2′)

Wellington Phoenix Reserves 2 (Benjamin Wallace 76′, Matthew Sheridan 83′)
Stop Out 0

Petone 4 (Matthew Brazier 14′, 23′, Ashnarvy Mustapha 33′, Brynn Sinclair 90+3 pen’)
Miramar Rangers 3 (Andrew Bevin 55′, 57′

Wellington Olympic 7 (Kailan Gould 8′, 37′ pen, Hamish Watson 36′, 66′, 90′, Jack-Henry Sinclair 48′, Joel Stevens 90+4′)
North Wellington 0

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