City won’t underestimate Petone

Words: ACFC Media

Friday 3 November 2023

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Auckland City FC head coach Albert Riera is adamant his side will not be complacent when they face Petone in Saturday’s Round 7 National League clash in Lower Hutt.

By claiming all three points the Navy Blues would secure their spot in the National League title decider with two games to spare but Riera expects a stern test from the home side.

“I think we are in a fantastic situation right now, something the lads have been working so hard for, to have in our hands to be in the final with two games to spare, it’s massive, however it’s not done yet,”  explained the City coach.

“We are going to have to fight a lot, play very good football away from home, obviously going to Wellington against a team that I’ve watched their every game, they are a very, very good team, Riera added.

The Navy Blues sit top of the competition table with maximum 18 points from six rounds, while Petone are still searching their first-ever National League win.

Ryan Edwards’ charges have endured a difficult maiden National League campaign so far with five defeats and a draw against Eastern Suburbs but Riera insists the Navy Blues can’t afford to be complacent.

“Again I’ve seen every game they played in the National League and some of the games they played in the Central League,"  the Navy Blues coach continued.

"They are a team that play fantastic football I personally I think they have been a bit unlucky with the results.

“They have been creating a lot of chances and some of the games they could have easily won, they are a young group of players but they are very confident.

“We never take any game for granted we are not going to look at the table, we know what we are playing for, it’s massive, a great opportunity for the club and for the team  and we are going to do the job,” Riera added.

RECENT FORM - Petone FC

NATIONAL LEAGUE 

27 October v Wellington Olympic (A) lost 1-2
21 October v. (Christchurch Utd  (A) lost 0–3
14 October v. Auckland United (H) lost 0-1
8 October v. Eastern Suburbs (A) drew 1-1
30 September v. Cashmere Technical  (H) lost 1-5
24 September v. Napier City Rovers (A) lost 0-3

Ends

Match Details
National League Championship R7
Saturday 4 November  2023
Petone FC v Auckland City FC 
Petone Memorial Park, Lower Hutt
Kick-off: 2.30pm NZDT

AC 2023 NLC SQUAD: 1-Conor TRACEY (GK), 2- Mario ILICH, 3- Adam MITCHELL, 4-Christian GRAY, 7-Cam HOWIESON (c), 8-Gerard GARRIGA, 9-Angus KILKOLLY, 10-Dylan MANICKUM, 11-Ryan DE VRIES, 12-Regont MURATI, 13-Nathan LOBO, 14-Jordan VALE, 15- Aidan CAREY, 16-Joseph LEE,  17-Oliver COLLOTY, 18. Sebastian CIGANDA (GK), 19-Liam GILLION, 20- Emiliano TADE, 21- Takuya IWATA, 22-Tong ZHO, 23- Alfie ROGERS, 24-Joe WALLIS (GK), 25- Michael DEN HEIJER, 26-Rayan TAYEB, 27-Stipe UKICH, 28-Adam BELL, 29- Yuta NARUSE

COACH: Albert RIERA
ASSISTANT COACH: Ivan VICELICH
GK COACH: Enaut ZUBIKARAI
TECHNICAL: Adria CASALS
TECHNICAL: Jarrod WALLACE
LOGISTICS: Keith COTON
PHYSIO: Matt PAYNE

 

OFC CHAMPS LEAGUE PLAYOFF 1st LEG

Saturday 9 March 2024, Kiwitea Street, kick-off: 2pm

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7 HW0000000
8 MN0000000
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10 WR0000000
11 WS0000000
12 TC0000000

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