Perth Glory will be looking to continue their improved performances in the Foxtel Y-League when they entertain Melbourne City at Dorrien Gardens on Saturday morning (kick-off at 9.30am).
The youngsters are coming off a 2-2 draw against Adelaide United two weeks ago and with three games remaining, defender Ollie Annis is looking to end the season on a high.
The 19-year-old feels that the side have drawn great confidence from their result in Adelaide, but were also disappointed not to have won the game.
"I believe we deserved all three points against Adelaide and it showed the improvement in our game,” he said.
“We worked so hard for one another and scored two unbelievable goals, but were again let down by our own silly mistakes. Also we didn’t take the chances we created and it cost us again, but overall it was a good performance and one we want to build on against City this week.
"The boys are buzzing and we’ve been working really hard the last couple of weeks. We know it will be a tough game, but we want to be the first team to beat City this season."
Annis went on to confirm that he has made a full recovery from the injuries that hampered him earlier in the campaign and like the rest of the squad, is now targeting a strong finish.
"Personally it’s nice to be playing 90 minutes again and putting in consistently good performances,” he explained.
"I’m really enjoying playing football again now that I’m not injured and am hoping to help get the three points this weekend. Our goal for the second half of the season was to go unbeaten in the Y-League. We just need to keep working hard so that we not only finish the Y-League season off positively, but also start well in the NPL WA."
Glory Head Coach John Gibson believes that Annis is relishing the extra responsibility that has been placed upon him this year and echoed the defender's sentiments regarding the performance against Adelaide.
“It’s Ollie’s first full season in the Y-League, but he is one of the experienced and mature players in the group," he said.
"His performances have been very solid and he has helped lift the younger players around him. Ollie’s a great character and leader of the group; he’s invaluable.
"We are coming off a strong performance against Adelaide and we deserved more, but again we were our own downfall.
"But one thing we’ve been super-pleased with was the response from the group after a disappointing game against Victory, result-wise and we’ll be looking for more of the same against City.
"They [City] are unbeaten and have won Conference A, but we know we were a little unlucky not to take anything from the first game against them. We need to be focused and concentrate the whole 90-plus minutes and produce the performance to match."
Gibson went on to speak of his pride at seeing a clutch of youth team players stepping up into the Hyundai A-League squads in recent weeks.
“Walter Scott became the fourth player from the youth squad to debut in the A-League after coming off the bench at half time on Tuesday," he said. "Walter did well on debut and it gives everybody in the group a nice little boost.
“Jacob Italiano, Yagoub Mustafa and Callum Timmins have all had time on the pitch, while Riley Warland has been around the senior side and both Henry Hore and Chok Dau have been in the extended match-day squad.”
Please note that Saturday's game will kick off at 9.30am, not 10am as previously advertised.