By Chloe Lau
Adelaide City’s WNPL team were back in action for the past month in the Mitise Pre-Season Cup, marking the team’s first tournament under the guidance of new head coach Max Primaro.
City finished in second place of group A, after recording a 4-2 victory over Metro United, 0-1 win against Salisbury Inter, and a 2-1 loss against eventual runners-up Adelaide Comets.
The Black and Whites were narrowly beaten by FSA NTC in the third-place play-off, losing a penalty shootout (4-2), after Yuka Sasaki’s equaliser brought the score to 1-1 at the end of the 90 minutes.
Primaro said that despite the fourth-placed finish in the Mitise Pre-Season Cup, he was happy with the new generation of girls that City had rising through the ranks.
“The pre-season cup was a good opportunity for us to see a lot of the younger players.
“Last year, there was quite a big squad, so there were limited opportunities for the young ones so it’s been great to see what we need to do to move forward, and to bring those young ones into line with the seniors, so hopefully we move forward from there.”
Now armed with a few months of preseason and a tournament under his belt, Primaro indicated that he is ready for the challenge ahead that is the 2020 season.
“I’m not looking to change too much other than being more attacking, and I’m bringing in a couple of changes to implement that,” said Primaro.
“I’ve inherited some good players, and obviously what they’ve done up until now has been pretty good, but we just want to change it up to be a little bit more attacking as a whole team.
It’s a huge task to take over such a successful team that took out the treble last year, but Primaro is looking to continue the success, and would also like to instil and bring back a culture of having fun with the players expressing themselves on the pitch and enjoying the style of football they play.
Five of City’s W-League players will be missing out on the first three rounds of the season – a mandatory break after finishing off the W-League – subsequently missing out on a big season opener against Metro United.
Primaro is not too worried, however, and in turn praised the level of quality and achievement at Adelaide City to have so many players plying their trade in the national competition, even if it leaves his side depleted for the opening rounds.
“The flip side of having a good represenation in the W-League is that we go straight into the season missing five starting players which is half a team and that is quite challenging.
“But in saying that, as soon as we found out, we’ve been working hard on the younger players coming through, and hopefully have them ready for game one. I know the players are up for it, and we’re looking forward to start the new season.”
The WNPL team kicks off their season this Friday against Metro United at 6.00pm in the first match of a double-header before the club’s NPL side take on MetroStars at TK Shutter Reserve.