Each week during the home and away season, Impetus’ writing and photography team covering the A-League Women will nominate a player, coach, and event of the week. We’ll keep a tally of the player and coach votes as the weeks go by, and just before the Finals, will announce our winners for 2022/23 (16/1/23)
Player of the Week:
BEN GILBY: Sarina Bolden. Western Sydney Wanderers have been a team desperate for a talismanic attacker all season. In comes the Philippines international and her side seal back-to-back sensational victories.
KIERAN YAP: Vesna Milivojević registered two assists and scored one in a terrific individual display. In the absence of Grace Maher, the Serbian international stepped up and helped run the show for Canberra United.
RYAN MILLER-WOODS: Nikki Flannery. It’s been a very good return to the A-League Women from an ACL injury with her performance against Newcastle last Saturday being no exception. The striker was absolutely outstanding with two crucial assists in the first half-an-hour of the match that put Canberra in a very comfortable position for the rest of the match.
BEN CAREY: Hannah Keane. Scoring two goals against Sydney, one of the strongest teams and best defences in the league is an insane achievement. Shout out to Michelle Heyman and Hana Lowry as well though.
Coach of the Week:
BEN GILBY: Kat Smith. After a run of what could have been demoralising defeats, her team faced fixtures against Melbourne City and unbeaten Western United. Smith’s motivational efforts, her players’ belief and some important forays into the transfer market have reaped the rewards of two sensational wins back to back.
KIERAN YAP: Mark Torcaso. Before the loss to Western Sydney, Western United had defeated Sydney FC to go seven games undefeated. The win over last season’s premiers was a huge statement. Western United have now defeated every one of last season’s top four teams.
RYAN MILLER-WOODS: Njegosh Popovich. One of the biggest positives in Popovich’s first season as head coach of Canberra United has been the fact that Canberra has been extremely strong creating opportunities in attack with 145 shots in just eight matches played with an average of 18.12 shots per match despite going into their match against Newcastle with just 10 goals scored. However, with the team that Popovich put out for the match against Newcastle, he was able to get Canberra playing not only strong in the first half and even better in the second half but most importantly the team was able to take their chances more often with one goal for every 3.6 shots made for arguably Canberra’s best performance so far this season.
BEN CAREY: Kat Smith. Leading her team to a win over the previously undefeated Western United is such a big achievement.
Event of the Week:
BEN GILBY: The decision by the APL to push back Perth Glory’s scheduled trip to Sydney FC from next weekend to midweek at the end of March. Sydney are unable to stage the game due to pitch conditions at Leichhardt Oval and cannot find another ground to play it at. The impact of this on the Glory is huge with the game rearranged for midweek in a period where the club have a Sunday home game before travelling to Sydney and then another trip three days afterwards to Brisbane Roar – yet another example of inherent inflexibility when it comes to scheduling games for clubs who face huge travelling distances.
KIERAN YAP: Sarina Bolden’s goal vs Western United was a brilliant moment and reward for the impact she has had at The Wanderers already. She could have had more, but just as in their first appearance, Bolden gave Western Sydney a spearhead in attack, and Western United something to worry about.
RYAN MILLER-WOODS: Canberra United’s first goal against Newcastle Jets was superb. Starting with a great pass made by Michelle Heyman that found Nikki Flannery who ran onto the ball, controlled it with a few touches, and then returned the favour to Heyman who had subsequently made a run into the box, chested down the pass, took an additional touch and beautifully slotted the ball into the back of the net.
BEN CAREY: The tussle between Emma Rolston, of Wellington Phoenix, and Ella Mastrantonio, of Perth Glory, that had them both sent off, was sad but also one of the biggest plot points of the week.