Roar teams eager for football test in Ipswich
SOME of Western Pride's most exciting junior footballers will receive valuable experience and exposure when they play Brisbane Roar women's sides in Ipswich tomorrow night.
However, it won't only be under 13 and under 15 boys players benefiting from the two games at Goodna.
Brisbane Roar women's head coach Mel Andreatta said her W-League and National Training Centre (NTC) players were treating the games seriously while supporting a worthwhile charity.
The matches from 6.15pm will be among 23 games Andreatta has earmarked during the W-League off-season.
Leading up to the next national competition starting in October, Andreatta is carefully managing her players to ensure they receive any surgery needed, represent the Australian Matildas, resume training and do extra fitness work.
"We planned it before we actually started the W-League season what the next 12 months would look like,'' Andreatta said. "And that included the off-season program.
"They certainly kept themselves in good condition while they had a break before we started back just after Easter.
"It's an important time for us because we were successful last season (winning the W-League premiership).''
Ipswich product Allira Toby will not be playing for Roar tomorrow night as she undergoes off-season surgery and rehabilitation.
However, the additional game time is important for promising W-League squad members like Kaitlyn Torpey and Hollie Palmer who are pressing for more big match opportunities next season.
Roar's under 18 side coming to Ipswich plays in the National Premier Leagues women's competition.
The Roar coach has seen the Pride junior sides play in previous seasons and expects them to provide worthwhile opposition at Kippen Park.
"They play a good brand of football,'' she said.
"They control the game with the ball and want to win it back as soon as possible when they don't have it. And we want to play teams like that who are really positive with their football and successful.
"What they don't necessarily have in experience just yet, those 15 year old boys certainly have it in speed and physicality. That's what the girls face in W-League so it will be a really big test for our girls.''
Andreatta is also delighted that the Roar players have embraced the Share the Dignity charity, which provides basic hygiene essentials for women and girls in crises.
"The girls wanted to do anything they could to help Share The Dignity,'' she said, highlighting how the campaign gives the players a real purpose outside of football.
"It's an important one too for the players to have an active role in our community.''
The Roar players will continue to share their message during off-season and future W-League matches, as they work to assist less privileged women.
Wednesday: 6.15pm - Western Pride U13 boys v Roar NTC (youth girls).
7.45pm: WPFC U15 boys v BRFC women.
Both games are at Kippen Park, in Enid Street, Goodna.