The Wanderers opened their pre-season last night with a 3-0 win against Mt Druitt Town Rangers with goals scored by Mark Bridge, Romeo Castelen and trialist Kevin Ly.What we learnt from the match:
1. Mitch Nichols will create goals
Nichols joined the club under a mix of differing opinions, some against him but mostly positive. Despite the divisive nature of his signing, Nichols gave a big glimpse of what to expect from the midfielder.
Sat in at number ten, Nichols grabbed two assists and linked-up brilliantly with Mark Bridge and Romeo Castelen, creating a number of scoring opportunities.
With further work left to do in the off-season, signs are positive that the Red & Black have found the allusive number ten they were looking for.
2. There’s nothing quite like park football
A 1,712 capacity crowd was on hand to watch the Wanderers’ first hit-out of the season and the vibe was something to behold. There were no empty seats and with every person mere metres from the pitch it was reminiscent of football from yesteryear.
With Popondetta Park filled to the brim with a combination of Red & Black and green and gold, the mood was friendly and welcoming as the smell of the BBQ and the noise of the RBB created an atmosphere that you would get nowhere else than a grassroots club.
Entering the ground you knew it was going to be a good night and Mt Druitt Town Rangers did not disappoint as hosts.
3. The Pied Piper will be a fan favourite
Federico Piovaccari landed in Sydney yesterday morning and participated in a light training session before heading off to Popondetta Park where he was presented to the fans at half-time.
Piovaccari showed off his famed Pied Piper goal celebration and walked a lap around the field to meet the fans and take some selfies.
We’re sure he will become a fan favourite.
4. Our keeper stocks are strong
Last night the Wanderers showed off the talents of both goalkeepers Dean Bouzanis and Andrew Redmayne.
Dean Bouzanis had a strong start with a number of impressive saves, especially in the opening minutes. He was confident, quick and played a good 45 minutes before Andrew Redmayne came in at half time.
A photo posted by Dean Bouzanis (@dbouzanis43) on Jul 30, 2015 at 3:46pm PDT
Redmayne did not have a lot to do until the final fifteen minutes where he reacted quickly to stop an own goal and had a few finger-tipped saves of his own.
A clean sheet and two good performances from the Red & Black custodians.
5. We can’t wait for the FFA Cup
While entertaining, last night’s match was still a pre-season fixture and it has left us all hungry for the first competitive game of the season: The Westfield FFA Cup Round of 32 against Brisbane Roar.
A number of regulars were rested against Mt Druitt and with the Pied Piper still to come in as well as room left for another signing or two, the FFA Cup really could see the team at another level.
Bring it on!
Tickets and information for the Westfield FFA Cup match is available by clicking here.