Georgia Yeoman-Dale: Back From Injury and Aiming For a Matildas Return

After a long term injury, Western Sydney Wanderers’ Georgia Yeoman-Dale is back and put in some impressive displays in the W-League this season. Ben Gilby profiles the 26 year-old whose ability to play at right back and as an attacking midfielder could aid her chances of a Matildas recall.

Above: Georgia Yeoman-Dale (right) in action for Western Sydney Wanderers. Photo: @WSWanderers

It’s been a long road back to action for Georgia Yeoman-Dale. Prior to this season, she had played only seven matches since 2018, but a series of strong performances in a Western Sydney Wanderers side who had a great second half of the season this year to proves she is well on her way to getting back to her best.

Yeoman-Dale missed eighteen months due to a bone lesion on her shin which also led to a stress fracture on her ankle. Yet originally it didn’t seem anywhere near so serious. Indeed, Yeoman-Dale played and trained on for a while before succumbing to an injury that ultimately also cost her a potential place in the Matildas squad for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup and forced to sit on the side lines as her club made their first ever Finals berth in 2019/20.

Above: Georgia Yeoman-Dale in action for Australia (right). The Western Sydney Wanderers star holds five Matildas caps. Photo: @TheMatildas

During the spell, she was warned that she may never play again, something which Yeoman-Dale admits she found it tough to accept, and took several weeks out of recovery in order to gather the mental strength required to come back.

That time stood her in good stead and after playing for APIA Leichhardt in the New South Wales NPLW (state league for women’s football), she was ready to make her W-League return with Western Sydney Wanderers.

The serious injury that kept Yeoman-Dale out for eighteen months was preceded by another one which came under the heading of “freak accidents” when a collision of heads with Kim Carroll in a game against Perth Glory saw her end up with a deep scar reminiscent of something from a Harry Potter novel and needed twenty-one stitches to fix.

Above: Georgia in action against Perth Glory in a game that she suffered a terrible head injury. Photo: @WSWanderers

Whilst not able to play last season, Yeoman-Dale was kept involved at Wanderers and was impressed by the club’s new Centre of Football in Blacktown which includes three elite pitches specifically for the club’s women’s, men’s and academy teams. “It’s the best I’ve played in the W-League,” she observed.

Yeoman-Dale’s footballing career began in the Australian Capital Territory at Majura FC before beginning her W-League career with Canberra United as a seventeen year-old and over the course of three seasons in the capital city, she clocked up twenty-eight appearances and scored four goals – a period during which she won the first of her five caps for the Matildas and was part of a Canberra squad which won the W-League once and were premiers on another occasion. Her most recent call-up came in 2017 for Australia’s internationals against Brazil in Penrith and Newcastle.

It was to Newcastle Jets that Yeoman-Dale moved in 2014 when she joined the Jets from Canberra United in search of more regular football. “I still consider myself quite young in the game and I’m still growing and trying to develop myself as a player,” she said at the time.

Above: Georgia pictured shortly after signing for Newcastle Jets. Photo: @NewcastleJetsFC

Two seasons at the club saw Yeoman-Dale play twenty-one times and score one goal before Sydney FC came calling. It was a period which saw the club make two Grand Finals and Yeoman-Dale make a further twenty-seven appearances.

In time for the 2018/19 season, Yeoman-Dale joined several other players in making the move across Sydney to Western Sydney Wanderers following Dan Barrett’s appointment as head coach. Of the move at the time, she said: ”I think I’ve chosen the right way. As soon as you see an ex-Sydney FC coach moving over to the Wanderers, players like myself who enjoyed playing for him makes the decision a little bit harder.

Above: Georgia in Sydney FC’s Sky Blue before her cross city move to the West. Photo: Getty Images/Matt King.

”I’m really excited about joining the Wanderers, it’s my fourth club now but it’s the right move at the moment.”

The serious injuries may have curtailed Yeoman-Dale’s hopes of making an immediate impact at the club, but the signs this season suggest she is about to make up for lost time.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: