NPL 1 Preview: APIA Leichhardt v Wanderers

Our NPL NSW side travels to ladder leaders APIA Leichhardt FC, hoping to cause a big upset on the road.

Whilst it will be a difficult assignment, the Wanderers will be encouraged by their recent goalscoring form, as well as their last result against APIA, which saw the sides draw 2-2 at Wanderers Football Park.

On that day, Jarrod Carluccio scored a stoppage time equaliser after the opposition initially came from behind, and Carluccio very nearly won the game but was denied by a crucial stop from the APIA keeper.

The Wanderers almost secured a massive win over third place Rockdale Ilinden last week, but a double from league top scorer Alec Urosevski meant the Wanderers were pegged back and forced to share the points in a 3-3 draw.

Nicolas Milanovic and Nathaneal Blair each scored in a performance that highlighted the Wanderers’ attacking flair and ability, but the dropped points meant the side were unable to close the gap between them and Mt Druitt Town Rangers above them as much as they would have liked.

Should the Wanderers find victory on the weekend, they may move above Rangers and out of the relegation zone if Ranger subsequently lose or draw, though it will be a tough task against an APIA side sitting eight points clear at the top.

The side are undefeated in the last four matches, winning three of them, and also possess the strongest attack and equal strongest defence. They have had to work hard for those victories, with all of them being by a single goal.

They have also been boosted by the return of star attacker Jason Romero in recent weeks, who rejoined the club after a short stint at Macarthur FC.

Centre back’s Joshua Hong and Teng Kuol will have to be on the top of their games this

Saturday to hold out Romero and an APIA side looking to increase their lead over the rest of the competition, but should they and the team achieve a victory against the odds, it would greatly boost their chances of survival with a friendly looking run of fixtures on the horizon.

APIA Leichhardt v Wanderers
Saturday 8 July 2023, 5:45pm
Lambert Park