Navy Blues wary of newcomers

Words: ACFC Media

Friday 3 May 2024

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Auckland City FC will be aiming for all three points when they visit East Coast Bays in their last Northern League game before departing for the OFC Champions League starting next week in Tahiti.

Saturday afternoon’s match at Bay City Park will be the first ever meeting between these two sides and head coach Albert Riera is wary of the threat posed by the Northern League newcomers.

“Many teams against Auckland City show you their best version and that what makes every team very hard and that’s not going to be different when  we play East Coast Bays,” explained the Navy Blues head coach.

“They have been actually getting points, they drew I believe their last game and they drew against Birkenhead away which is a very tough team to play against, so many good things they are doing.

“We want to be focusing  on our standards because that’s the best way  to get close to the three points and it’s not going to be easy that’s for sure,”  added Riera.

The Navy Blues have produced a convincing performance last weekend to defeat their top-of-the-table rivals Western Springs 2-1 to remain at the summit of the competition with six wins from seven matches.

Meanwhile East Coast Bays scored deep into injury time courtesy of Guy-frank Essome Penda to rescue a point with a 2-2 draw against Tauranga City on the road.

That result was the Northern League debutants’ third draw in seven matches to sit in 9th place on the ladder with three points.

There are milestones looming for a couple of City players with striker Ryan De Vries currently on 99 goals for the Navy Blues from 193 matches.

Elsewhere, Dylan Manickum is within touching distance of his 50th goal for the club. 

Manickum, on 49 goals, could become the seventh player in club history to smash the half-century mark, a record compiled across 129 games to date.

Meanwhile the Valerio Raccuglia - coached Auckland City U23 will cross the Harbour Bridge to visit their East Coast Bays rivals at the Bay City Park on Saturday, May 4 with kick-off at 12:30 pm.

Ends

MATCH DETAILS
Northern League Round 8
Saturday  4 May 2024
East Coast Bays AFC v. Auckland City FC
Bay City Park, East Coast Bays
Kick-off: 3:00pm 

AC SQUAD: 1-Conor TRACEY (GK), 2- Mario ILICH, 3- Adam MITCHELL, 4-Christian GRAY, 5- Timothy BOULET, 7-Cam HOWIESON (c), 8-Gerard GARRIGA. 9-Angus KILKOLLY, 10-Dylan MANICKUM, 11-Ryan DE VRIES, 12- Regont MURATI, 13-Nathan LOBO, 15- Caleb MOOSBALLY,  16-Joe  LEE,  17-Joe RIDLEY, 18 - Areya PRASAD (GK), 19-Liam GILLION, 21- Adam BELL, 22-Tong ZHO, 23- Alfie ROGERS, 24-Joe WALLIS (GK), 25- Michael DEN HEIJER, 26-Rayan TAYEB, 27-Stipe UKICH.

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

Fri 17 May 2024, Stade Paea, Tahiti, 3pm local

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