Western Pride footballer Hayden Mchenery.
Western Pride footballer Hayden Mchenery. Chris Simpson

Pride players dodge rain to focus on Friday night hit-out

PLAYING a Friday night game offers the Western Pride footballers a change after breaking through for their first win of the season.

However, head coach Graham Harvey was keen to keep his team's routine as close to normal as possible.

That includes training tonight and a team dinner, something Harvey introduced last season to help the boys complete their National Premier Leagues pre-game preparation.

Despite rain most of the week, the players also had access to a gym facility at the Briggs Road Sporting Complex.

"It's been a little bit disruptive but nothing to worry about,'' Harvey said.

"Everything is fine at the moment so hopefully we'll field a similar sort of side to last week.''

After a first-round 2-2 draw with Strikers, Pride beat Redlands United 2-1 last Saturday night.

"It's nice to get that first result, get that first win under your belt,'' he said. "It always gives the boys a little bit of extra confidence.''

Field conditions permitting, Friday night's 8.30pm match at Newmarket is against competition heavyweights Brisbane City.

"They are always strong,'' Harvey said. "They always manage to attract good young players and that's what they have done again this year.

"They have started the season quite strongly so they'll be a challenge at their place.''

In a Capital League 2 match scheduled for Friday night, third-placed Western Spirit travel to Elder Oval to play sixth-placed Annerley.

The Ipswich City Bulls, in fifth place, play Pine Rivers United on Sunday.

The Ipswich Knights host Lions in Sunday night's Brisbane Premier League encounter at Bundamba.

The teams had a terrific pre-season battle in the Silver Boot competition where the Knights won.

Danny Wilson takes over as head coach from Graham Ross, monitoring some injury concerns.

Striker Peter Drager is out for four to six weeks with Luke Monaghan in doubt with a groin injury.

"Our Reserve squad is doing an exceptional job. They are top of the table so we do have the right players there,'' Wilson said.

"We just need to make sure we get the right balance together and go out there and finish the job.''

The Western Pride women play their second NPL game on Sunday, against Peninsula at Redcliffe. They are keen to get their season rolling after a 4-0 loss to Souths last weekend.

Game day

NPL: Friday (8.30pm) - Western Pride v Brisbane City at Newmarket. The Pride under 18s play at 6.30pm.

NPL women: Sunday (3.15pm) - Western Pride v Peninsula Power at AJ Kelly Field, Redcliffe.

BPL: Sunday (6pm) - Ipswich Knights v Lions at Eric Evans Oval, Bundamba.

CL2: Friday (8.30pm) - Western Spirit v Annerley at Elder Oval. Sunday (5pm) - Ipswich City v Pine Rivers United at Wendy Alison Park.