Glory out to ruffle Cockerels' feathers

The PGFC Academy First Team will be out to continue their push for an NPL top-four finals spot when they entertain former Glory legend Scott Miller’s Cockburn City at E&D Litis Stadium on Sunday (kick off at 3pm).

The youngsters' previous clash with the Cockerels in Round 9 ended with the spoils being shared, but three points are a must this time around.

Glory currently sit only two points short of a finals spot, but lost ground last week with defeat against Rockingham City and 'keeper Nic Speca felt that it was their first-half performance that cost them at Saferad Stadium. 

"I thought the boys weren’t really up for it on the weekend," he said.

"Coming out for the first half, we didn’t look like we wanted to win at all, which was disappointing as we went 2-0 down in 45 minutes with sloppy goals.

"I felt after the half-time chat with [Head Coach] Richard [Garcia], he basically motivated every player to go out the next half and put it all on the line, which we did.

"Not conceding for the second half was good, but maybe we should have put a couple of the chances away that we created."

Speca will face one of his former clubs on Sunday, after playing for the Cockerels as a 15-year-old and he's determined to impress.

"Yes, it’s another big game this weekend," he said, "and it’s always good to go up against your former club as you always want to perform.

"We definitely want to take the three points so we can start climbing the ladder to keep our top-four final chances alive.

"I feel like if our team comes out with the eagerness to really win, I know that we can, but if we come out sloppy and not up for it, we will get punished early." 

Garcia, meanwhile, is looking for a response from his players to the result at Rockingham.

"Last week’s defeat was a good learning experience for the guys who have been working hard all year with not much break," he said.

"We were not alive from a couple of set-pieces and were punished, but I’ve got every confidence in this young group; they will learn from it.

"We have viewed the video, spoken to the group and highlighted what needed to be worked on and are expecting another tough encounter with Cockburn City on Sunday.

"We go into the game confident we can get the job done, like we do every week.

"I’ve been proud of the way my players have played their football this season.

"But we need to take advantage of our good possession in games and that’s something the players must learn from.

"They have trained well this week and we now need a win to keep us in touch with the top four."

What promises to be an intriguing day of NPL action will get underway at 11am when Glory's table-topping Under-18s will be out to maintain their three-point advantage over Perth SC.

They will be followed at 1pm by the Under-20s who are also leading their competition and could wrap up the title with victory over a Cockburn side that currently occupies second place, five points behind them.

Do get along and lend the lads your support, but if you can't make it to E&D Litis Stadium, Football West will be streaming the Under-20s and First Team games HERE.

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