Academy side aiming to k.o. Keogh and co

The PGFC Academy First Team are back on home soil this week, with Inglewood United providing the opposition at Ashfield Arena.

Walter Scott's last-minute winner against Stirling Lions last Saturday sent the youngsters to the top of the NPL WA table and ensured that they will be in confident mood as they prepare to take on a United side coached by a familiar figure in the form of Glory's Hyundai A-League skipper, Andy Keogh.

“We know Saturday will be another tough test," said Head Coach John Gibson, "and it will be strange seeing Andy on the opposition bench after another good season for our A-League side. But once that whistle goes, it will all be about us and if we get the game plan right and win our battles, we are confident we can get the right result.”

Defensive midfielder Sam Riak, meanwhile, believes that Glory will need to lift their performance levels having been forced to come back from 2-0 down in order to pip Stirling at Macedonia Park.

“We always knew it was going to be a tough game against a good Stirling side away from home," he said, "but in saying that, our focus is always on our own processes and performances. But we didn’t perform to the level we know we can perform at which was disappointing and unacceptable. In saying that, the lads showed great character to come back and win the game.”

Riak skippered the side last weekend and was honoured to be handed the armband.

“Yes it was a proud moment and meant a lot to me to lead the boys out on the day,” he said. “Getting the win made it a lot more special, especially in the manner we did it."

The 20-year-old, who spent a season in the NPL Victoria with Hume City, has been delighted with Glory's strong start to the campaign, but is by no means getting carried away.

“I think the season has been great so far," he said. "We set ourselves some targets at the start of it and are definitely on the right track. But I think as a group of players we will be the first ones to admit that the hard work starts now. We’re absolutely enjoying ourselves in the way we’re playing right now and just want to continue doing all the right things that have got us to where we are.

“Gibbo [John Gibson] is a top coach, very detailed in his approach regarding football which is something we all admire him for. But he also demands a lot from us in training and games in making sure we’re performing to the best level possible. Personally, I enjoy working with him, he’s always helping me with my game and it has improved a lot under his guidance.”

Turning his attentions to the Inglewood clash, Riak feels that Glory will need to be at their best to down an Inglewood side that has lost only one of its last five games.

“Inglewood are great side and has always been a tough opponent for us," he said. "They are now starting to hit good form, but our main focus is on ourselves, not them. We have been working hard in training this week and have identified a few things that let us down last week. We need to ensure that we don’t perform like that again, as we know what type of side Inglewood are and they will punish every sloppy mistake.”

The First Team game kicks of at 3pm on Saturday and will be shown live on the Glory Facebook page - click HERE.

The Under-18s and Under-20s are also in action, kicking off at 11am and 1pm respectively, so do get along to Ashfield and lend the lads your support if you can.


Photo courtesy of Fotoenzo