Excitement builds at Sydney ahead of second W-League season

With the Westfield W-League competition kicking-off this long weekend, Sydney FC’s captain Heather Garriock says this season will be better than the last, for both the team and the league overall.


With the Westfield W-League competition kicking-off this long weekend, Sydney FC-s captain Heather Garriock says this season will be better than the last, for both the team and the league overall.

“It-s an exciting second year. The first year was very successful and I think the second year is a lot more organised and a lot more international.”

This season will see the Sky Blue women join the men at the Sydney Football Stadium, with three of their five home games being played as curtain-raisers to Hyundai A-League fixtures at the SFS.

“It-s unbelievable to be able to play before the men, I don-t think many W-League teams are going to do that,” said Garriock. “This season is going to be exciting we encourage all the fans to come to the women-s game as well as the men-s games”.

Coach, Alen Stajcic has retained most of his players from the inaugural campaign, including last season-s Golden Boot winner, Leena Khamis. The team has also been bolstered by the arrival of several new stars, including experienced Danish internationals, Julie Rydahl and Catherine Sorensen.

“I think it will be very beneficial this year given that we-ve played together for the last 12 months or so and there-s a lot of Matildas in the squad,” explained Sydney-s skipper.

“Experience is the key this year - using that throughout the team and getting the young ones to step up as much as possible is really important.”

As for the mental preparation, Garriock believes the Sydney side need look no further than its own dressing room for inspiration.

“We-re just going to focus on ourselves this year I don-t think the focus needs to be anywhere else.” Garriock explained. “Every team is going to be dangerous, whether it-s going to be a team full of Matilda-s or a team that-s just gelling well.”

Having played in leagues in the US and Europe, the 26-year old says the standard of women-s football in Australia is up there with the best.

“The Australian [Women-s] league is very comparable to the European leagues. The quality is getting better,” she said. “I think the mentality in Australia is definitely changing and that-s thanks to sponsors like Westfield-s and the FFA.”

Sydney FC-s Westfield W-league seasons starts on Monday, October 5, with the women to kick-off the club-s 100th game celebrations at the Sydney Football Stadium when they face the Central Coast Mariners, prior to the Hyundai A-League clash between the two teams.

CLICK HERE to visit the Ticketek website and pre-purchase your tickets for the W-League/A-League double header!

Sydney FC's Westfield W-League squad for the 2009 season is as follows:

1. Nikola DEITER Goalkeeper 2. Teigen ALLEN Defender 3. Danielle BROGAN Defender 4. Alesha CLIFFORD Defender 5. Lisa GILBERT Defender 6. Servet UZUNLAR Midfield 7. Heather GARRIOCK (C) Midfield 8. Julie RYDAHL Midfield 9. Sarah WALSH Forward 10. Kylie LEDBROOK Midfield 11. Catherine SORENSEN Midfield 12. Michelle CARNEY Forward 13. Catherine CANNULI Forward 14. Nicola BOLGER Midfield 15. Kyah SIMON Forward 16. Linda O-NEILL Midfield 17. Danielle SMALL Midfield 18. Brittany WHITFIELD Midfield 19. Leena KHAMIS Forward

AS Alen STAJCIC Head Coach