A short turnaround will see the Westfield Matildas go into Friday night’s encounter against Jordan with a vastly different team to the one that drew with Japan.
The short turnaround between games will see the Westfield Matildas go into tomorrow (Friday) night-s second AFC Women-s Asian Cup encounter against Jordan at Thong Nhat Stadium in Ho Chi Minh with a vastly different team to the one that drew with Japan in their tournament opener.
Interim Head Coach Alen Stajcic has made no secret of the depth of talent at his disposal, particularly with the heat and humidity in Vietnam, and he intends to utilise it to full effect against the Jordanians as he appears set to make ten changes to the starting eleven that played on Wednesday night.
Only right back Teigen Allen will front up again from Game 1, Stajcic is convinced the girls that come in have the potential to perform and inflict Jordan-s second defeat of the competition after they went down 3-1 to Vietnam in their opening match.
Stajcic-s unwavering belief in his group is emphasised by the fact that of the line-up that is expected to start, three players - Nicola Bolger, Emma Checker and Teresa Polias - have just six senior international appearances between them.
“There will probably be ten changes to the team, and on top of those ten, Hayley (Raso) and Ash (Sykes) will more than likely come on at some point as well,” Stajcic said.
“Everyone in the squad is pushing for a starting spot and I-ve got confidence in all of them so I-m sure they-ll do the job - there-s really good depth in this group.”
On his decision to turn over the personnel in the team, one thing Stajcic wanted to make clear was that by no means did it mean the Westfield Matildas would be taking Jordan any less seriously than how they approached World Champions Japan.
Considering the top five countries at the conclusion of the tournament will book their place at next year-s World Cup, there is no way Stajcic is thinking positive results over Jordan and Vietnam are just going to happen, a message he has drilled into his players.
“We can-t afford to be complacent, there-s a World Cup spot at stake so the game against Jordan is critical,” Stajcic said.
“We need two wins in this group phase, we haven-t won one yet, we-ve got two to go and we need to win both to ensure that we go to the World Cup, so we can-t afford to underestimate anyone.
“We-ll do our homework on Jordan and hopefully come out firing on Friday.”
From the homework Stajcic has done so far after he watched Jordan against Vietnam from the stands before tackling Japan yesterday, he believes they will prove a tricky assignment to overcome.
“Jordan might play a bit differently against us than they did against Japan and only push one up front so it might be a bit harder to break them down,” Stajcic said.
“But we-ll try to attack and create, get the fullbacks overlapping and outnumber them in key areas of the field.
“We don-t want to give a team like Jordan any possibility of getting in the game so the sooner we can get on top of them the better.”
Kick-Off is at 8.15pm AEST and the match can be seen LIVE and exclusive on Fox Sports 1 and 1HD.
Jordan v Westfield Matildas Friday 16 May 2014 Thong Nhat Stadium, Ho Chi Minh Kick-Off: 8.15pm AEST (5.15pm local time)
LIVE & exclusive on Fox Sports 1 and 1HD
Westfield Matildas squad: 1.Brianna DAVEY (gk), 2.Teigen ALLEN, 3.Kim CARROLL, 4.Clare POLKINGHORNE, 5.Laura ALLEWAY, 6.Leena KHAMIS, 7.Hayley RASO, 8.Elise KELLOND-KNIGHT, 9.Caitlin FOORD, 10.Emily VAN EGMOND, 11.Lisa DE VANNA, 12.Kate GILL, 13.Tameka BUTT, 14.Alanna KENNEDY, 15.Nicola BOLGER, 16.Stephanie CATLEY, 17.Teresa POLIAS, 18.Lydia WILLIAMS (gk), 19.Katrina GORRY, 20.Samantha KERR, 21.Casey DUMONT (gk), 22.Ashleigh SYKES, 23.Michelle HEYMAN, 24.Emma CHECKER
HEAD TO HEAD RECORD This will be the ever first meeting between the two sides.