After a wonderful few weeks of watching our Tilda’s climb their way to the top of the table of our Olympic Qualifying round, we find ourselves gathering for another important match for womens Football, in Australia.
The Sydney Derby.
As it stood before 5pm, on the 15th of February, the city was Red and Black….at 5:01pm, the city was well on its way to being Skyblue, again.
It was a strong start from Sydney FC, with 2 insanely quick goals all within 13 minutes of the match. One by Veronica Latsko, and a second by Ellie Brush. 2 goals that left me sinking in my seat, and we still had 78 minutes to spare. My confident and intimidating walk up to the park, with my WSW scarf and signature sunglasses, all seemed to disappear faster than Tony Popovic did when he left for Turkey, before our 16/17 season even kicked off.
After about 20 minutes, is when we see the girls in Red and Black start to wake up and realise that this isn’t just any game, it’s derby day, and they need to start biting back if they want to turn this around.
The first ‘bite’ came from former Skyblue and current WSW Captain, Amy Harrison, as a powerful shot from outside the box left supporters all through Cromer park, either sighing in relief or groaning in pain. As the ball made its way through the air, it was only centimetres off, hitting the crossbar and deflected out for a goal kick.
Even thought there were a few great attempts to change the scoreline, the Western Sydney Wanderers looked deflated, compared to their last game against their crosstown rivals. As much as Cortnee Vine made a run towards goal, key moments were missed, and risky moves were made. Many risky ones ended in yellow cards… lot’s and lot’s of yellow cards.
The ref was handing them our like free samples. By the end of it, the lucky winner of a red, was given to US star, Kristen Hamilton, after a tackle on Ellie Brush.
Usually, at the mens game, I would be all over the card and screaming from the active bay, about the decision, but it was a hard challenge…and also extremely hard to be aggressive and intimidating in such a family friendly environment. Everything I did felt illegal… (but I am also very proud of myself, for keeping my temper under control. It’s a miracle no one got arrested or hurt)
Just when I begged the Football Gods for, at least, ONE goal to our name, another costly mistake of giving Sofia Huerta too much space to move, ended in a shot that gave Sydney FC a 3 – 0 lead. A goal which took me from wearing the scarf around my neck, to wearing it over my head like my grandmother would, to finally shielding my eyes like Lady Justice.
It was a very different game, since last time these two sides met. With the absence of Lynn Williams and the loss of Denise O’Sullivan, the cracks showed after an unlucky 90 minutes. Even thought FC had also lost 2 key players (Foord, to Arsenal and Logarzo, to Bristol City), they still proved to be the better side.
But, after 2 trains, 1 bus and a 45 minute drive to Cromer Park, I had to say it wasn’t that painful. We got to see the return of young Taylor Ray, to the pitch, after a devastating 12 month long ACL injury (but as she returned, my god, it looked as if she never left!) As well as a young Michelle Morris TV, in her moon boot, singing and chanting like a nutcase, again.
I hate you Michelle, but seeing you smile again, warms my heart (but also f*** ya)
Next round, Sydney FC take on Perth Glory, for their last round of the regular season. On the other side of town, the Wanderers take on the current top of the table leaders (and Matilda’s 2.0) Melbourne City…and if we play anything like we did, today, we’re f*cked :’)
Cya next round, ya’ll.