Preview: Canberra United v Brisbane Roar

This match-up undoubtedly ranks as one of the annual highlights of the Westfield W-League calendar.

Canberra United v Brisbane Roar

Saturday 4 October 2014

McKellar Park, Canberra

Local kick-off: 5pm

Join the conversation on Twitter using match hashtag #CBRvBRI

This match-up undoubtedly ranks as one of the annual highlights of the Westfield W-League calendar.

The contest pits together two former champions with Canberra winning their lone title in an epic Grand Final win over Brisbane in 2012. Two-time Westfield W-League queens Brisbane, for their part, won their maiden crown at the expense of United back in the first season of the competition in 2008.

Brisbane’s record against Canberra is stronger than one might imagine. Indeed, they have never lost in the nation’s capital during the regular season, suffering just three defeats overall across 15 matches.

The Roar finally hit their straps last week after enduring rare successive losses to open the season. Newcastle Jets crashed back to earth with a 3-1 defeat in Queensland, the result coinciding with the return of superstar goalkeeper Nadine Angerer and Westfield Matildas defender Brooke Spence to the Roar line-up.

In contrast to Brisbane, Canberra’s run of two successive wins to open the season came to a shuddering halt with defeat last weekend. United, by their admission, never really hit top form in the opening two weeks despite reaping maximum points. Yet, they had little luck in a hefty 4-2 defeat at home last weekend against Melbourne Victory, in what was a deceptively lop-sided scoreline.

Prolific striker Michelle Heyman will be looking to net her fourth goal of the season in as many outings. And the match will also be notable for the return of former Canberra favourite Hayley Raso to McKellar Park.

Canberra United squad: 1. Chantel JONES, 2. Catherine BROWN, 3. Julia DE ANGELIS, 5. Grace FIELD, 6. Caitlin MUNOZ, 7. Ellie BRUSH, 9. Grace GILL, 11. Michelle HEYMAN, 12. Sally ROJAHN, 13. Nicole BEGG, 14. Ashleigh SYKES, 16. Lori LINDSEY, 18. Rebecca KITING, 20. Melissa MAIZELS (gk), 22. Stephanie OCHS

Ins: none

Outs: none

Unavailable: Kendall FLETCHER (overseas), Meg McLAUGHLIN (knee – 4-6 weeks), Grace MAHER (Australia U-17s)

Brisbane Roar squad: 1. Nadine ANGERER, 2. Laura ALLEWAY, 4. Clare POLKINGHORNE (c), 5. Brooke SPENCE, 6. Hayley RASO, 7. Kim CARROLL, 8. Elise KELLOND-KNIGHT, 9. Larissa CRUMMER, 10. Katrina GORRY, 11. Vedrana POPOVIC, 13. Tameka BUTT, 14. Natasha WHEELER, 15. Brooke GOODRICH, 16. Angela BEARD, 17. Emily GIELNIK, 20. Kate STEWART (gk)

Ins: Natasha Wheeler, Brooke Goodrich (both promoted)

Outs: Ayesha Norrie (omitted)

Unavailable: none