NPL Preview: Wanderers v NWS Spirit

The Young Wanderers have another home game as they look to get an important three points against NWS Spirit on Saturday night.

After two wins to begin the season, the Wanderers suffered their first defeat of the 2024 campaign against Rockdale Ilinden FC last week, as their late fightback on a hot afternoon fell short as Rockdale won 3-2.

Zac Sapsford scored a wonderful drive from distance just before the break, and Nathaneal Blair scored his third of the season with a well taken finish on the run over the keeper, but the away side were too clinical and were able to absorb the pressure for most of the second half.

At the time of writing, the Wanderers currently sit in seventh place, though all but one team in the competition has played a game more, meaning a win for the Wanderers could take them as high as third.

Blair and centre back Doni Grdic are set to lead the side, whilst Marcus Younis should get more minutes as he returns from injury.

They will fancy themselves against a Spirit side yet to win this season; a loss against Marconi Stallions and three draws – two of them goalless – mean they sit second from bottom on the NPL NSW table.

They have been difficult to break down, but only have two goals so far this season, the equal fewest in the league.

It seemed as if they were heading for a second straight defeat midweek when they were down 1-0 against Sydney United going into the final 10 minutes, but a late Corey Kavanagh goal secured a share of the points.

Spirit had a strong first ever season of NPL NSW football last year, winning 11 games on their way to an 11th placed finish, well away from the relegation zone.

They narrowly defeated the Wanderers 1-0 at Christie Park, before playing out an entertaining 3-3 draw on the final day of the season, as the Wanderers rested most of their first team players having already secured safety in the competition.

Western Sydney Wanderers v NWS Spirit
Saturday 9 March 2024, 7:00pm
Wanderers Football Park