Match Preview - Garcia's men set to embrace road trip challenge

Glory Head Coach Richard Garcia is adamant that his squad will embrace the challenge of playing three away games in the space of eight days, starting with Saturday's trip to GMHBA Stadium for a clash with Western United (kick-off at 2.05pm WST).

Garcia's presser in full

The men in purple will then remain in Victoria to play Melbourne Victory on Tuesday and Melbourne City on Sunday, with both of those games taking place at AAMI Park.

But Garcia believes that his side have what it takes to deal with the packed schedule.

"We had a little bit of practice in the ACL [AFC Champions League] with games coming thick and fast," he said.

"The boys are going to have to be at their best to recover and play, recover and play and we're going to have to use everyone in the squad, but that's a good thing for the squad.

"We always talk about it being a squad game and making sure that everyone plays their part and knows their role.

"It's a big challenge, but the boys are up for it.

"We've spoken many times in the group about focusing on what we can control and I think the boys have really taken that on board.

"All we can do is train hard, work hard and make sure that when we play, we're ready to play."

Western United will head into the weekend clash looking to secure their first win of the season having drawn with Adelaide United and lost to Melbourne City in their two games to date.

But Garcia is expecting Mark Rudan's men to provide a stern challenge.

"They'll be a tough opponent," he said.

"They set up well and have some really good, experienced players. 

"But us coming off the back of a nice win will help confidence and help us go there with a real good purpose."

In terms of early team news, meanwhile, the Head Coach revealed that Diego Castro is closing in on a return from his hamstring injury.

"He's travelling really well," he said, "and should be in the mix sooner rather than later.

"I think Saturday will come too early, but possibly Tuesday and then Sunday after that."

Glory will be searching for a first ever win over Western United this weekend, with last season's two fixtures producing a 1-1 draw and a 2-0 win for the green-and-blacks.

History could also be made by Liam Reddy with the Glory 'keeper one clean sheet away from overtaking Danny Vukovic to become the outright A-League record holder on 86.

Match Details

Saturday, 23 January 2021

Western United FC v Perth Glory

GMHBA Stadium, Geelong

Kick-Off: 2:05pm (WST)(5:05pm (Local))

Referee: Jonathan Barreiro

Assistant Referee 1: Wilson Brown

Assistant Referee 2: Daniel Illievski

Fourth Official: Lachlan Keevers

VAR: Alex King

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 1:30pm (WST), ABC TV from 2:00pm (WST), Sky Sport 7 (New Zealand), Kayo Sports ( and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers

Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #WUNvPER

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Western United FC squad: 1.Filip KURTO (GK), 2.Aaron CALVER, 3.Brendan HAMILL, 4.Andrew DURANTE, 5.Dylan PIERIAS, 6.Tomoki IMAI, 7.Besart BERISHA, 8.Lachlan WALES, 10.Steven LUSTICA, 11.Connor PAIN, 12.Stefan ZINNI, 13.Ivan VUJICA, 17.Joshua CAVALLO, 20.Victor SANCHEZ, 22.Tomislav USKOK, 23.Alessandro DIAMANTI (c), 25.Luke DUZEL, 26.Nicolas MILANOVIC, 27.Jerry SKOTADIS, 30.Ryan SCOTT (GK)

**2-4 to be omitted**

Ins: 3.Brendan HAMILL (promoted), 12.Stefan ZINNI (promoted), 17.Joshua CAVALLO (promoted)

Outs: 34.Iker GUARROTXENA (calf – 1 week)

Unavailable: 14.Max BURGESS (Unavailable), 19.Joshua RISDON (tibia – 8-10 weeks), 21.Sebastian PASQUALI (hip – 6 weeks)

Perth Glory squad: 1.Tando VELAPHI (GK),  5.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, 9.Bruno FORNAROLI, 10.Andy KEOGH, 13.Luke BODNAR, 15.Brandon WILSON, 16.Nick SULLIVAN, 18.Nick D'AGOSTINO, 19.Calllum TIMMINS, 20.Carlo ARMIENTO, 21.Bryce BAFFORD, 22.Josh RAWLINS, 23.Dane INGHAM, 24.Daniel STYNES, 25.Nicholas WALSH, 29.Darryl LACHMAN, 33.Liam REDDY (GK), 34.Mason TATAFU, 37.Riley WARLAND, 88.Neil KILKENNY (C)

** 2-4 to be omitted**

Ins: 13.Luke BODNAR (returns from injury), 15.Brandon WILSON (returns from injury)

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 6.Osama MALIK (shoulder 2-3 weeks), 7.Chris IKONOMIDIS (knee – 4 weeks), 17.Diego CASTRO (hamstring – 1 week)