Melbourne City players Rhali Dobson and Jasmyne Spencer believe the problems of overlapping seasons in women’s football will one day be a thing of the past.
City fell 2-0 to Canberra United on the weekend without Yukari Kinga, Tameka Butt and Elise Kellond-Knight who were playing for overseas clubs.
The Cityzens were also without the injured Steph Catley and Kyah Simon, but were able to field teenagers Nia Stamatopoulos, Chelsea Blissett, Janna Lawson and Aimee Medwin.
Unavailable key players for the opening weeks of the W-League has been an issue with players returning from busy seasons in North America and Europe.
American Spencer managed 90 minutes against Canberra after a season with Seattle Reign in the NWSL and she said she could foresee positive changes coming in the future,
“We want the next generation to not have to worry about that,” Spencer said. “Whether they’re Australian or American-born or wherever they are, women’s leagues across the world are trying to grow, be as sustainable as men’s leagues and it’s not there yet.
“We’ll keep working and doing the best we can to make sure in the future it’s an option.”
Dobson added that the key was making the W-League an irresistible choice for all footballers.
“W-League is improving and is trying to become the best in the world, so those girls don’t need to go to those competitions and can stay in Australia all year round,” Dobson said.
“The issue is going to come year-in and year-out and it’s something we have to deal with at the moment. We look at it this way, we had a worse start last year and we had a full squad.
“You look at the calibre of players coming in, there are also girls trying to make national teams so for example if they get injured, they say, ‘I need a competitive season in a short timeframe’.
“They’re utilising us in that aspect which only benefits our competition. It means girls don’t have to travel abroad.
"It would be great getting that competition all year round or at least nine months like the A-League.”