W-League | Wanderers upset Canberra United

In a do or die battle, Western Sydney Wanderers have kept their mathematical W-League finals hopes alive with a surprise 1-0 win over Canberra United.

It was a tense start at Campbelltown Stadium with both teams clearly desperate for a positive result and it was second placed United who started the brighter.

Canberra defender Yukari Kinga issuing the first shot on target after nine minutes before Wanderers keeper Jada Mathyssen-Whyman had to stretch moments later to keep a headed clearance from a teammate out of her net.

On 13 minutes Western Sydney then threatened themselves with Katie Stengel just millimetres away from beating United keeper Trudy Burke to a loose ball in the box.

After a stuttering start, the Wanderers found their feet in the contest with Stengel forcing Burke into a save at her near post on 28 minutes before Erica Halloway had a deflected cross ricochet off the crossbar.

Having survived this scare, Canberra pushed forward and were only denied a goal of their own by some fine keeping from Whyman who made a crucial save on her goal-line following a cross.

United continued to pepper the Wanderers goal leading into halftime with Hayley Russo a chief culprit but Whyman equal to it.

Having waned as the half went on, Western Sydney would find themselves ahead at the break with Stengel making amends for a miss just moments earlier as she buried an effort from the centre of goal in the 43rd minute.

It was an enthralling start to the second half with both sets of strikers getting sights of goal within five minutes.

Having been impressive all season, Canberra were uncharacteristically wayward in the first 60 minutes of this match with Jasmyne Spencer highlighting this as she pulled her shot high from inside the box approaching the hour mark.

Despite lacking their usual polish, United dominated much of the ball in the second half but simply couldn’t make the most of it with the Wanderers posing more of a threat on the counter.

With 75 minutes played, a deflected strike from Paige Nielson went just wide of goal before Stengel blasted wide in a one on one with Burke.

As the clocked ticked down, United continued to push for an equaliser but never really looked liked like getting it as the Wanderers held on for a crucial win to keep their slim finals hopes alive.

Western Sydney Wanderers 1 (Stengel 43’)
Canberra United 0

Stadium: Campbelltown Stadium

Referee: Rachel Mitchenson
Assistant Referees: Sarah Ho and Avrol Beecham
Fourth Official: Kelly Jones

Western Sydney Wanderers: 1. MATHYSSEN-WHYMAN Jada, 2. COOPER Caitlin, 4. O’BRIEN Chloe, 5. PETINOS Helen, FLETCHER Kendall, 8. HALLOWAY Erica, 9. STENGEL Katherine, 10. NIELSON Paige, 15. CARPENTER Ellie, 18. HRISTODOULOU Angelique, 23. BURGESS Joanne
Substitutes: 3. ORGILL Nikola, 7. YATIM Sarah, 12. LOWE Rachel, 22. DUMONT Casey.

Canberra United: 1.BURKE Trudy, 2. KINGA Yukari, 5. MCCORMICK Jenna, 8. RASO Hayley, 9. SPENCER Jasmyne, 10. MAHER Grace, 12. BREWER Hannah, 13. BOUREILLE Celeste, 14. SKYES Ashleigh, 15. CHECKER Emma, 22. OCHS Stephanie
Substitutes: 18. HOGG Kahlia, 19. FLANNERY Nickoletta, 20. BORIC Georgia, 32. DE VANNA Lisa.

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A football fanatic and journalism student who won't leave you wondering about any Wanderers news this season as I cover all things Red and Black for The Football Sack.