Adelaide still winless after round six and move to the bottom of the ladder after being defeated by Canberra United.
Struggling in the final third
Despite possession statistics being in favour of Adelaide United, they still weren’t able to get any points on the board tonight – and that’s largely due to mistakes being made in the front third.
There was too much cheap turnover and Adelaide’s players weren’t supporting each other on the ball. Their players often found themselves holding onto the ball for too long before being tackled and losing possession.
Although they had some decent build up play, Adelaide weren’t able to keep possession for long enough to have any real front third chances.
Too many touches on the ball and not releasing attacking passes early enough killed Adelaide’s opportunity to win the game tonight.
United had three or four chances within the first 10 minutes from some early mistakes from Canberra, but they weren’t able to capitalise. They’ve only scored three goals in five games and are winless at the end of Round Six.
Desparate win for Canberra
Canberra desperately needed tonight’s three points to stay inside the top four.
The 2-1 win means Canberra remain in fourth spot on the ladder with ten points, just behind Sydney FC.
But United will need to continue their winning ways if they want to contend with Melbourne City, Sydney FC and the Western Sydney Wanderers.
These teams are miles ahead and are playing some quality football that has been unmatched by the rest of the competition.
Canberra’s head coach Heather Garriock said at half time that her side needed to pass the ball quicker and have a greater ability to change the point of attack.
It’s quickly becoming a three-horse race, so Garriock will be pleased with a 2-0 triumph over Adelaide.
Canberra United play the Wanderers next week, where they’ll be looking to keep in touch with the table leaders.
— Canberra United (@CanberraUnited) December 22, 2019 ">
Difficult playing conditions
The smoke and heat made conditions tough for players at Marden Sporting Complex.
Although it was 25 degrees at the time of kick-off, Adelaide has experienced temperatures of up to 46 degrees throughout the week, with nearby fires making conditions hazy and the air difficult to breathe.
Halfway through the first half Nikola Orgill needed to have a break to take her puffer, whilst Kaleigh Kurtz had to temporarily leave the field several times to deal with a bleeding nose.
The referee herself was replaced in the 94th minute, who clearly looked distressed in the hazy conditions.
Throughout the week both Adelaide and Canberra had changed training sessions to adapt to the heat and smoke, with gym sessions and indoor trainings taking place of regular outdoor sessions.
With smoke only a couple of kilometres away from a nearby bushfire at Adelaide Hills, the question of player safety arises. Are these conditions too dangerous for a game of football?
Heat will always be an issue in Australia whilst the W-League is played in the early afternoon in Summer. But with recent smoke and bushfires occurring so frequently, it might be worth being more flexible with the fixture and rescheduling or delaying more games in unfavourable weather conditions.
— The Football Sack (@TheFootballSack) December 22, 2019 ">