Ambitious Bayswater City coach Chris Coyne has not given up hope of topping the PlayStation 4 NPL WA table, despite his team sitting seven points off the pace.
Coyne knows a fired-up Floreat Athena, who were beaten by Subiaco last weekend, will be aiming to unhinge his plans when the teams meet at E&D Litis Stadium on Saturday.
Bayswater sit fifth on the ladder but Coyne is positive his side can cut the gap and close in on league leaders Inglewood United in the closing stages of the season.
“(Floreat) obviously had a bad result last weekend, so they’ll be looking to bounce back quickly,” he said.
“They’re a good team with plenty of attacking options and good mobility in midfield, so we always know it’s tough against Floreat and they always seem to list against us as well.
“We’re always confident in our own ability and we try not to worry about what anyone else is doing but we realise it’s a tough game and we’re looking forward to it. We’re quietly confident and excited because it’s a must-win game for both teams.”
Coyne, whose optimism has been helped by a three-match winning streak that claimed the scalps of Balcatta, Joondalup United and Sorrento, won’t settle for scraping into the finals.
“We’re chasing top spot, let alone top four,” he said. “Every game for us now is like a Cup final and we will treat it as one at a time.”
Bayswater also have a game in hand with a match against Subiaco next weekend, and Coyne is relying on every point his side can get.
“We’ve been out of it for a while now and we need to win that match before we worry, but it could propel us into that top two or three if results go our way,” he said.
Floreat had also been in good form with a five-game unbeaten run that came to an end against Subiaco last week.
Defender Andrew Scaldaferro told footballwa.net the loss was disappointing, and his side will be looking to react this week.
“I think last week was a big wake up call for us, and we were definitely off our normal game,” he said.
“We have to keep winning to stay up the top, and the lads are looking forward to the challenge of taking on a good Bayswater side on Saturday.”
In other matches this round, Armadale will take on Perth SC at Alfred Skeet Reserve, Perth Glory will host Mandurah City at Ashfield Arena and Cockburn City will take on Joondalup United at Dalmatinac Park.
Sorrento will host ECU Joondalup at Percy Doyle Reserve, Inglewood United and Stirling Lions meet at Perth Plasterboard Centre Stadium and Subiaco take on Balcatta at Rosalie Park.
Saturday, July 15
Armadale v Perth SC (Alfred Skeet Reserve, 3pm)
Perth Glory v Mandurah City (Ashfield Arena, 3pm)
Cockburn City v Joondalup United (Dalmatinac Park, 3pm)
Floreat Athena v Bayswater City (E&D Litis Stadium, 3pm)
Sorrento v ECU Joondalup (Percy Doyle Reserve, 3pm)
Inglewood United v Stirling Lions (Perth Plasterboard Centre Stadium, 3pm)Subiaco v Balcatta (Rosalie Park, 3pm)