Glory’s turnaround: From wooden spooners to finals contenders

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From wooden spooners in 2020/21, to finding themselves fighting to maintain a spot in the top four this season is highlighting how far Perth Glory have come in the A-League Women’s competition.

Disrupted fixtures, playing multiple games in one week, and uncertainty for the season ahead are just some of the challenges Perth have faced on top of playing games away from home for the foreseeable future.

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Although this year they have adapted, and sit fourth on the ALW ladder on 14 points.

Perth’s head coach Alex Epakis continued to stress the importance of taking each game as it came due to the uncertainty COVID and injury brought.

“Given the climate that we’re in, there’s so many variables it actually hurts my head to think too far ahead,” he said.

Trying to compete during a COVID disrupted season sees Glory losing some of their players heading into their Canberra United clash. With Leena Khamis, Bella Wallhead, Tijan McKenna and Alana Jancevski unavailable, and Gemma Craine and Susan Phonsongkham ruled out due to injury.

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It’s not all bad news, however, as Epakis has taken the upcoming fixture to reflect on how far his squad has progressed since last season.

“From where were last year to where we are now is a fantastic achievement. It’s a great step forward to where we want to be as a group and as a club,” he said.

“The most pleasing thing is that we’re starting to put together performances that are winning us games consistently, or at least helping us compete for games consistently, so that in itself is a great place to be.

“We’re in the hunt, and I don’t think anyone else expected that other than us. Where we’re at right now is where we want to be, and we want to defend that position in the top four as best as we can.”

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Glory are now looking for a consistent schedule so they can continue to prove their worth by battling it out for a finals spot, and they will need a win in their upcoming clash against Canberra to keep those hopes alive.

The side faces United on Saturday at Viking Park, 5.05pm. And with Melbourne Victory breathing down their necks two points behind with two games in hand, a win is needed to remain in the top four.

Feature Image credit: Tom McCarthy 

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Ash Ramos
Journalism student at Curtin University covering Perth Glory for the 2021/22 A-leagues season. Siuuu

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