Melbourne Victory and the Western Sydney Wanderers both suffered defeats in Round 1 of the competition last week and will be looking to redeem themselves as soon as possible.

Melbourne suffered a surprising 1-0 loss against a vastly improved Newcastle Jets, whilst the Wanderers took a heavy 4-1 beating at the hands of a polished Canberra United outfit.

For Victory, there was little to celebrate as they started slowly and struggled to work the ball through the midfield. Lisa De Vanna offered one of the few focal points up forward where there otherwise seemed to be a lack of movement.

Christine Nairn from Washington Spirit made her presence felt as soon as she took to the field, but the midfield otherwise lacked their traditional cohesiveness.

Defensively, Melbourne were able to repel a number of attacks from the Jets, with ‘keeper Brianna Davey and captain Steph Catley as particular standouts.

The Wanderers, on the other hand, sustained a significant defeat but still had a number of positives to take from the match.

Michelle Carney was eagerly involved in some goal scoring opportunities and debutante Demi Koulizakis made it a game to remember notching up her maiden goal.

Seattle Reign international Keelin Winters made her first W-League start, playing out the whole match, but was unable to lift the Wanderers over the sleek Canberra group.

For Melbourne to win this match, there will need to be a stronger connection through the midfield. Expect Christine Nairn to make her first start which should provide a stronger connection between the defensive and forward lines.

Lisa De Vanna proved as scintillating and enigmatic as always in the round 1 clash against Newcastle. Believe in the same if not more from this encounter, where the harsh loss will provide the fuel to make it a distant memory.

Defensive generals Davey and Catley will continue to solidify the backline, which will surely be a difficult entity to crack. 

The Wanderers will need the experienced combination of Caitlin Cooper, Keelin Winters and Michelle Carney to work their magic providing as many opportunities for Jordan Baker, Tia Gavin and Helen Petinos as possible. 

‘Keeper Trudy Burke will also need to be at her best facing up against striker Lisa De Vanna

Last time these two teams met was in round 9 last season and resulted in a 1-1 draw. Linda O’Neill unfortunately scored an own goal with Jessica Seaman ‘equalising’ late in the match.

In head to head encounters, Victory have the edge and haven’t been defeated by the Wanderers in the few confrontations they have had holding a 2-1-0 advantage.

Melbourne Victory v Western Sydney Wanderers

Sunday 21 September 2014

Broadmeadows Valley Park, Melbourne

Local kick-off: 3pm

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Melbourne Victory squad: 1. Brianna DAVEY (GK), 2. Hannah BREWER, 6. Gema SIMON, 7. Stephanie CATLEY (C), 8. Amy JACKSON, 9. Racheal QUIGLEY, 10. Christine NAIRN, 11. Lisa DE VANNA, 12. Ella MASTRANTONIO, 14. Tiffany ELIADIS, 15. Emma CHECKER, 16. Beatrice GOAD, 17. Gulcan KOCA, 19. Maika RUYTER-HOOLEY, 20. Cassandra DIMOVSKI (GK)

Ins: none

Outs: none

Unavailable: Lauren Barnes (overseas - 1 week), Elli Reed (overseas - 1 week)

Western Sydney Wanderers squad: 1. Trudy Burke (gk), 20. Sham Khamis (gk), 22. Victoria Guzman, 6. Rachael Soutar, 8. Grace Henry, 2. Caitlin Cooper, 3. Jessica Seaman, 14. Demi Koulizakis, 9. Keelin Winters, 11. Lorena Bugden, 12. Hannah Beard, 15. Rhianna Pollicina, 13. Jordan Baker, 5. Helen Petinos, 10. Michelle Carney

Ins: Hannah Beard (returns from suspension)

Outs: Tia Gavin (omitted)

Unavailable: Linda O’Neill (abroad – 2 weeks), Caitlin Jarvie (injury – 4 weeks)