The South Australia NPL finals series kicks off this weekend, including an elimination battle between Adelaide Blue Eagles and Adelaide Comets at Marden Sports Complex on Sunday.
In the final round of the season, Adelaide Blue Eagles secured a 2-0 away win against Raiders, while Comets suffered a 4-1 home loss against West Torrens Birkalla.
Blue Eagles – who lost the 2013 SA NPL grand final to Campbelltown City – finished the season in fourth position with 48 points.
Vice-captain Christopher Annicchiarico said the result would come if Blue Eagles play their usual game.
“We didn’t want to put too much emphasis on the importance of this week’s game, we just like to prepare like any other,” he said.
“We’re confident in our abilities and the team we put out on the park, so we’ll just go out there and try to do the business on Sunday.”
In their two regular season match-ups, Comets claimed a 2-1 victory in Round 9, then Blue Eagles won 2-0 in Round 22.
Annicchiarico labelled Comets as a high-class unit.
“In the first game, they dominated us in the second half and rightfully went away with the three points,” Annicchiarico said.
“In the second match-up, I thought we controlled the game and played quite well, but obviously it’s a different kettle of fish in the finals, but I think we’ve got the team and the ability to go all the way.”
Comets finished the season in fifth place, four points behind their opponents Blue Eagles.
Davide Zerillo said Comets would focus on working hard and executing their game plan in order to get the win.
“We’ve had a heavy workload the last couple of weeks, then really freshened up this week to get ready for Sunday,” Zerillo said.
“The team is really excited because this is the first time Comets have been in this position, so everyone is fresh and raring to go.”
Zerillo pinpointed Blue Eagles’ forward line as very dangerous, in particular striker Kym Harris.
“Blue Eagles are always a premiership contender. They are always there at this time of the year, so it is definitely going to be a big challenge,” he said.
“We’ve just got to make sure that we go there and worry about ourselves, play our own game and take it up to them.”
The winner of this match will then take on either Croydon Kings or Adelaide City, who will be facing off on Saturday at Polonia Reserve.
South Australia National Premier League Finals Series Week 1
Adelaide Blue Eagles v Adelaide Comets
When: Sunday 24 August (Kick off 3pm)
Where: Marden Sports Complex
Image courtesy of Adam Butler