The season is finally here and I can’t wait to get started! We’ve had a really strong pre-season as our W-League side comes under the management of the Newcastle Jets for the first time.

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It’s been an awesome move for the players and the coaching staff, and while it was great under Northern New South Wales Football, the Jets have already taken us forward with our own training facility at No.2 Sportsground and a totally new standard of professionalism.

On the training pitch, the focus from Deansy (W-League Coach, Craig Deans) has been on attacking football. As a playing group we’re aiming to score plenty of goals this year and play an entertaining style of football for the fans.

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Looking at the squad Deansy has put together, that attacking mindset is evident with Katie Stengel, Cortnee Vine and Emily Van Egmond joining the club this season. It’s so great to have a player of Emily’s quality and experience return to Newcastle again, and I’m really looking forward to playing alongside her.

We’re really excited to have Arin Gilliland back in Newcastle and this year she’ll be joined by Tori Huster and Britt Eckerstrom, who will offer a wealth of experience from their time in the NWSL to the younger girls coming through the Jets’ system.

Deansy has also recruited some quality Australian-based players with Hannah Brewer back from Canberra United and Tara Andrews returning from a year away from football. We’ll also have Young Matildas Clare Wheeler and Sophie Nenadovic, who will be back in Round 2 once they return from World Cup Qualifiers.

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The core group of players from last year’s squad will also return including Jenna Kingsley, Ash Brodigan and Tara Pender back for another season with the Jets – better for the run in the 2016/17 season.

With almost everyone back on deck for our season opener, we’ve been working hard to refine our combinations and get comfortable with Deansy’s game plan before facing the Western Sydney Wanderers at McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday.

This will be the first of five double-headers with the Hyundai A-League side and we’re really excited to be able to take part in this again, Newcastle really got behind us last year and we can’t wait for this season!

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I think that with the strides that have been made by the Professional Footballers Association, our W-League team joining the Jets and the squad that Deansy has put together – it’s going to be an exciting year of football in Newcastle.

Newcastle Jets take on Western Sydney Wanderers this Sunday at McDonald Jones Stadium. Kick-off is 2:30pm. Tickets are available here or you can watch live on SBS and Fox Sports.

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A Newcastle Jets midfielder, Cassidy will be writing a column before every Jets’ home game for the Westfield W-League 2017/18 season.