RAA NPLSA Round 3 Preview

MetroStars vs Croydon FC
3pm | Sunday 6 March | TK Shutter Reserve
Last Meeting: 
(7.9.21) Round 15 Croydon FC 1 v MetroStars 3

It’s MetroStars vs Croydon FC. It’s Robbie Saraceno vs Travis Dodd.

Two of the RAA NPLSA early highflyers meet in must-see Sunday afternoon Football.

MetroStars have opened their season perfectly, picking up two wins in their opening two games, with last Friday’s 3-2 win over Campbelltown City proving a major statement from the Klemzig based club. New striker Ren Nagamatsu demonstrated his threat in the final three as he recorded two impressive headed goals, while fullback Jackson Walls continues to amaze as he picks up his second goal in two games. MetroStars look like one of the league’s best-attacking sides, scoring six goals in their opening two games. The club will look to continue with their perfect start to the season with another three points.

MetroStars coach Robbie Saraceno discussed:

"The team’s start has been pleasing. We’ve faced two really good teams away and been good enough to pick up points there.”

When asked about his Round Three opponents, Saraceno stated: 

"Croydon FC has always been a tough game. They’ve shown in their first two rounds that they have had a good pre-season and will be one of the teams to beat this year.”

Croydon FC has started the 2022 RAA NPLSA season in great spirit, recording one win and a draw in their first two games. Round Two saw Croydon FC hold last year’s Champions Adelaide City to a goalless draw. Their early form shows positive signs for the club as they have drastically improved from their start last season while continuing to maintain their incredible performances from the end of the previous season. The arrival of Dion Kirk looks to be paying off for Travis Dodd’s men, while Patrick Caraccia continues to impress early in the season.

Croydon FC coach Travis Dodd discussed his club’s great early form, stating:

“I have been really happy with the boys and the start to the season. Our pre-season results weren’t great, to get a win in round one and pick up a point against a very good Adelaide City side is great and something we can look to build on”

When discussing their Round Three opponents, Dodd stated:

"Metro has started the season flying picking up maximum points from their opening two games. Jackson Walls has been a very good signing and is already delivering with two goals in his first two games for the club. Their new striker Ren Nagamatsu has also started well and will continue to improve as he gets to know his teammates better.”

"They have a number of dangerous players and I expect they will be a very organised team just as they were when we played them in pre-season. 

Dodd further commented:

"Our squad is more than capable of matching MetroStars, it will be important for us to start the game positively and put early pressure on them and get them on the back foot as much as possible.”

With both clubs not facing defeat in their opening two games, Round Three’s Match of the Round will not disappoint as MetroStars and Croydon FC aim to continue their great starts to the 2022 season.

MetroStars line-up: 1. Isaac Carmody (GK), 2. Connor O'rielly, 3. Luke Frangakis, 4. Justin Davis, 5. Timothy Henderson, 6. Paul Blefari, 7. Hamish Gow, 8. Rocky Callisto, 9. Thomas Strain, 10. Anthony Solagna (C), 11. Ariath Piol, 12. Alessio Melisi, 14. Philip Cash, 15. Nicholas Pedicini, 16. Francesco Schimizzi, 18. Fabian Barbiero, 19. Cooper O'donnell, 20. Luke Ostbye, 21. Cameron Woodfin, 22. Jackson Walls, 23. Christian Esposito, 26. Ren Nagamatsu, 27. Jackson Fortunatow
Coaches: Robert Saraceno, Nicholas Bouzalas, Adam Van Dommele, Michael Rende
Team Staff: Giorgio Capoccia, Joseph Polisena, Patrick Pike, George Laoutaris

Croydon Kings line-up: Raffaele De Lucia, 1. Gianni Tramontin, 2. John Panagaris, 4. Lawand Hasan, 5. Luke Klimek (C), 6. Christopher Vivian, 7. Sebastian Goode, 8. Adam Martinello, 9. Dion Kirk, 10. Antoni Trimboli, 11. Luis Benedetti, 12. Eric Scardigno, 14. Peter Mercurio, 15. Froribert Niyonkuru, 16. Kristos Stefanopoulos, 17. Giuseppe Macheda, 18. Jarrod Brazzale, 19. Benson Nsegetse, 20. Jared Clark, 21. John Hall (GK), 23. patrick caraccia
Coaches: Travis Dodd, Latham Byfield, Adam Vizzari
Team Staff: Giuseppe Catalano, Joshua Avery

WT Birkalla vs South Adelaide
8:15pm | Friday 4 March | Jack Smith Park
Last Meeting: 
State League One (17/7/20) Round 18, WT Birkalla 0 v South Adelaide 0

Round Three kicks off with another instalment of Friday night football as South Adelaide travels to Jack Smith Park to challenge WT Birkalla.

WT Birkalla enter the third round fresh off a hard-fought 3-0 win over Sturt Lions where they picked up their first points of the season. After their woes from the first round, WT Birkalla will look to continue movie forward in their aspirations of climbing the RAA NPLSA table. The arrival of Nicholas Harpas from Campbelltown City will bring experience and undeniable quality to the WT Birkalla, while they look to continue their form in front of goals after James Polli and Jonathan D’Arrigo opened their accounts last round.

However, a strong South Adelaide side stands in their way. South Adelaide have been this season’s early entertainers, scoring nine goals without conceding any in two games. A 6-0 demolition of Adelaide United FC will give Andrew Calderbank’s side great confidence heading into their showdown against WT Birkalla. Jonathan Rideout’s ambitions of finishing the year as the league’s top goal scorer are on track, starting the season scoring three goals in his first two games. South Adelaide in 2022 looks like a real dangerous team this season.

Friday night’s matchup will prove a great test for WT Birkalla as they look to back up a great Round Two performance, while South Adelaide will aim to continue their remarkable early start as look to demonstrate why they’re the team to fear in 2022.

WT Birkalla line-up: 2. George Mannion, 3. james polli, 4. Christopher Ashwood (C), 6. Anthony Quici, 7. Stefan Simic, 8. Jake Monaco, 10. Austin Ayoubi, 11. jonathon d'arrigo, 12. Luca Trimboli, 15. Christian D'Angelo, 17. David Makridis, 19. Nathan Munro, 24. Noah Benouzekri, 91. Yasmin Sudic
Coaches: Jason Trimboli, George Katsaneris, Carmine Lauriello
Team Staff: Roger Williamson, Henry Lambert

South Adelaide line-up: Ryan Wood, 1. Ryan Veitch (GK), 4. Robert Parker (C), 5. Declan Gray, 6. Liam Wooding, 7. Melad Ahmad, 8. Brett Rayner, 10. Jonathon Rideout, 11. Alexander Rideout, 13. Jai Conroy, 14. Donovan Pollock, 15. Jackson Stephens, 18. Jack Rudge, 19. Blake Lindsay, 23. Jack Ellis
Coaches: Andrew Calderbank, Steve Kitchin, Fraser McLean
Team Staff: Jacqueline Wingate

Adelaide Comets vs Sturt Lions
8:30pm | Friday 4 March | A.A Bailey Reserve
Last Meeting: 
(15/10/21) RAA NPLSA Semi-Final, Adelaide Comets 1 v Sturt Lions 0 (AET)

Friday night football continues as Adelaide Comets faces Strut Lions at A.A Bailey Reserve, as both sides aim to bounce back after dropping points in Round Two.

Adelaide Comets will be frustrated after dropping points in Round Two as they played out a 1-1 draw with Cumberland United. After dropping points early in the season, Barney Smith will hope his team regains their quality shown from their opening-round 5-0 win over WT Birkalla. In their last meeting with their Round Three opponents, it took an extra-time goal to send their team to the 2021 RAA NPLSA Grand Final.

While Sturt Lions will aim to get revenge after their 2021 Semi-Final loss, they must look to regain their winning ways after their 3-0 loss to recently promoted WT Birkalla. There was nothing to celebrate in Round Two for Sturt Lions, as their side failed to prevent three WT Birkalla goals with no response.

With 2021’s two RAA NPLSA Semi-Finalists going head-to-head in Friday night action, you can expect a high-quality encounter as both sides will hope to reframe from dropping any further points.

Adelaide Comets line-up: 1. Julian Torresan (GK), 5. Adam Le Cornu, 6. Francesco Pangallo, 7. Dylan Smith, 8. Ryan Yates, 10. Anthony Mavrolambados, 11. Thomas Briscoe, 12. Lukas Ikonomopoulos, 14. Nathan Andijanto, 16. Stelios Zacharakis, 18. Thomas Giannakopoulos, 21. Nikolas Ikonomopoulos, 22. Allan Welsh (C), 23. Scott Nagel, 24. Lachlan Stead, 31. Daniel Vaughan, 66. Jayden LoBasso, 70. Ashton Rinaldo, 77. Augustus Williams
Coaches: Barney Smith, John Falidis, Peter Eleftherakis
Team Staff: Evangelo Katsambis, Andreas Wiens, Emma Gericke

Sturt Lions line-up: 1. James Klappers (GK), 2. Michael Marrone, 3. Daniel Guastella, 4. Jacob Atkinson, 5. Lachlan Duffy, 6. Toby Nelson, 7. Ben Woollard, 8. Caden Yates, 9. Gonzalo Rodriguez, 10. Alexander Sortini, 11. Samed Altundag, 12. Tyreece Conway, 13. William Plush, 14. Zack Gomez, 15. Akira Kobaishi, 16. Samuel Voigt, 17. Jonathan Fusco (C), 18. Jack Dawson, 20. Brandon Centofanti, 21. Jed Gauci, 22. Valentino Esposito, 23. Cale Nagle
Coaches: Lino Fusco, Frank Tibaldi, Gregory Videon, Michael Harkness
Team Staff: Matthew Flounders, Michael Margaritis, Logan Stevens

FK Beograd vs Campbelltown City
4:00 pm | Saturday 5 March | Frank Mitchell Park
Last Meeting: 
(8/8/15) Round 25, Campbelltown City 1 v FK Beograd 0

The first Saturday fixture will see a battle between two sides who have failed to record a point so far this season, as Campbelltown City travel to Frank Mitchell Park as they take on FK Beograd

FK Beograd will be disappointed with their start to life in the RAA NPLSA experiencing back-to-back losses, with a 4-2 loss to Adelaide Olympic being the most recent. Ninko Beric’s first goal of the season and Paul Radice’s Goal of the Week was not enough for the recently promoted side to overcome their Round Two opponents. Damian Mori’s side will hope they can change their fortunes as they battle a struggling Campbelltown City side.

Life under Michael Matricciani has not gone to plan, as they have recorded back-to-back 3-2 losses, ultimately leaving them on zero points heading into Round Three. Campbelltown City will hope to change their current form as they battle another of the leagues out of form teams in FK Beograd. The last time these two sides faced was in 2015 when current Campbelltown City coach Matricciani played in the front three for the Red Devils. The return of Daniel Mullen will provide great confidence for the team heading into Round Three.

This fixture is extremely important for both sides as they look to get their seasons up and running with their first three points. There is a lot on the line this Saturday.

FK Beograd line-up: 1. Dawson Bojanic, 5. Jacob Butler-Bowdon, 6. Paul Radice, 7. Jace Cummins, 9. Joshua Mori, 10. Thomas Love, 11. Evan Kounavelis, 14. Isaac Mullen, 15. Massimo Falco, 16. Ninko Beric, 17. Chahine Noujaim, 18. Stanisa Velinov, 19. Filimon Asefa, 20. Jordan Pudler, 21. Nikola Jokic (GK), 22. Akok Arok, 23. Cooper Nunn
Coaches: Damian Mori, Scott Parr
Team Staff: Constantinos Tsaconas, Sachin Prakash Kumar

Campbelltown City line-up: 1. Alexander Woodlands (GK), 2. Shaun Harvey (C), 5. James Boffa, 6. Adam D'Agostino, 7. Joel Allwright, 8. Alexander Mullen, 9. Marc Marino, 10. Luigi Ditroia, 11. Anthony Ture, 12. Nicholas Francese, 14. Adam Piscioneri, 15. Antony Piscioneri, 16. Daniel Mullen, 17. Adrian D’angelo, 18. Yohei Matsumoto, 21. Jordan Maricic, 23. Jake Halliday
Coaches: Michael Matricciani, Adrian DAloia, brenton hiern, Edward Scalzi
Team Staff: Agelo Kapnistis, Liam Oates, Corey Artone

Adelaide City vs Cumberland United
5:00 pm | Saturday 5 March | Adelaide City Park
Last Meeting: 
(4/9/21) Round 20, Cumberland United 2 v Adelaide City 2

Adelaide City looks to regroup after their goalless draw in Round Two, as they take on Cumberland United at Adelaide City Park.

After missing the opportunity to gain three points in their Round Two 0-0 draw with Croydon FC, last year’s Champions will have to look to overcome Cumberland United to get their season back on track. Although producing numerous goal-scoring opportunities, Adelaide City struggled to capitalise on these chances. Paul Pezos will hope his team can find similar goal-scoring qualities shown in their Round One win against Campbelltown City.

Cumberland United arrive at Round Three after their 1-1 draw with Adelaide Comets, where they produced a hard-fought performance to gain a point against a strong side. Sam Carmichael was the centre point of the game, as his first-half own goal put his team behind before the break, however, his second-half equaliser earned his team a valuable point.

Cumberland United face a real challenge in their trip to Adelaide City Park, as they attempt to overcome their second 2021 RAA NPLSA Grand Finalist in two weeks. Adelaide City will hope they don’t drop any more points in their attempts to regain the Championship in 2022.

Adelaide City line-up: 4. Matthew Halliday (C), 5. Zakariah Waters, 6. Bradley Corbo, 7. Daniel Bressan, 11. Kur Kur, 14. Aladin Irabona, 15. Darcy Dawber, 17. Thomas Brown, 19. Vianne Kurikwimana, 20. Charlie Devereux, 22. JUAN GUTIERREZ, 23. Jai King-Byrne, 33. Dakota Ochsenham, 44. Henry Filsell
Coaches: Paul Pezos, George Tsonis, Steven Hughes
Team Staff: Fabian Garuccio, Luis Fernandez Astudillo, Steven Hughes

Cumberland United line-up: 1. Luke Schoen (GK), 2. Jack Schoen, 3. Joshua Harvey, 4. Daniel Ryles, 5. Sam Carmichael, 8. Harry Thannhauser, 12. Chol Wel, 20. Stavros Bakopanos, 22. Lansana Smith, 25. Charlie Ince, 30. Wesley Weetra, 35. Thomas Visser, 38. Riak Mayol, 49. Tom Dittmar, 60. Minsung Park
Coaches: Neil Young, Mathew Balopitos, Daniel Stuart
Team Staff: Jody Loomes, Bryn Jones, Sean Bushby, Steven O'Donnell

Adelaide United FC vs Adelaide Olympic
7:45 pm | Saturday 5 March | Jack Smith Park
Last Meeting: 
(28/8/21) Round 19, Adelaide United FC 1 v Adelaide Olympic 1

Saturday’s last fixture will see a struggling Adelaide United FC face a strong Adelaide Olympic.

Adelaide United arrive at Round Three after the disappointment of losing 6-0 to South Adelaide, in a match the team will want to quickly forget. In their first two games, United have conceded nine goals, currently holding the worse defensive record. The team will hope that last season’s Team of the Years striker Asad Kasumovic can begin to find his form shown in 2021.

Adelaide United FC will face an Adelaide Olympic side who have scored six goals in their first two games, and who are fresh off a massive 4-2 victory over FK Beograd. Jason Konstandopoulos, Fausto Erba, Ioannis Simosis and Panagiotis Manidakis all opened their accounts for the season, to help their side to an important three points. Coach Yianni Stamatelopoulos will hope to take advantage of a currently poor Adelaide United FC defence, as they aim for their second win of the season.

Adelaide United FC will aim to put it all on the line in their matchup against Adelaide Olympic as they try to fix their unfortunate start to the 2022 season.

Adelaide United FC line-up: Yiorgos Coutsoumbes, 37. Jonny Yull, 44. Arbi Mollas, 45. Noah Mcnamara, 51. Panashe Madanha, 54. Panagiotis Kikianis, 55. Ethan Alagich, 62. Fabian Talladira, 63. Patrick Mcgregor, 72. Jake Porter, 77. Asad Kasumovic, 81. Mohamed Bility, 83. Jok Akuien, 97. Luka Jovanovic
Coaches: Airton Andrioli, Elvis Markov, Joe Verringer
Team Staff: Will Mockridge, Ebony Charles, Katrina Smith

Adelaide Olympic line-up: 1. Lewis Moss (GK), 2. Jacob Jones, 3. Paul Wilson, 4. Benkert Abdija, 5. Adam Leombruno, 6. Kristin Konstandopoulos, 7. Jason Konstandopoulos, 8. Damian Ljujic, 9. Christos Pounendis, 10. Dylan D'Agostino, 11. Tito Bontor (GK), 14. Fausto Erba (C), 15. Michael Cittadini, 24. Panagiotis Manidakis, 44. Ioannis Simosis
Coaches: Yianni Stamatelopoulos, Bill Nastou, Pal Prengaj
Team Staff: Robert Muscio, Sumin Kim

Image: 80kms