Women’s pre-season trip confirmed

The Wellington Phoenix women will embark on their maiden pre-season tour to cap preparations for the 2023-24 Liberty A-League.

The Phoenix women’s squad will travel across the Tasman early next week for two matches against A-League opposition before playing host to Melbourne City in their opening round match on Sunday, October 15.

They will play Newcastle Jets at Pluim Park on Tuesday, October 3 before making the short trip down the Pacific Motorway to play competition newcomers Central Coast Mariners at Industree Group Stadium on Saturday, October 7.

The match against Central Coast will be part of their family day festivities as the Mariners women prepare to return to the A-League after a 14-year absence.

The Phoenix will come up against familiar faces in the two pre-season matches, with foundation Nix players Isabel Gomez and Annabel Martin now on Central Coast’s books, while young defender Claudia Cicco has moved to the Jets in the off-season.

Phoenix head coach Paul Temple is pleased to have the opportunity to test his team against A-League opposition before the season proper.

“While the matches we’ve had to date in pre-season have been hugely beneficial to the players, they’re looking forward to testing themselves against their peers,” Temple said.

“The players didn’t get the chance to play A-League opposition in pre-season last year and they felt it took them a while to adjust during the season.

“We want to hit the ground running this year and believe this pre-season tour will help us do that.”

Paul Temple will take his entire squad to Gosford, with Annalie Longo, Michaela Foster, Kate Taylor, Grace Wisnewski, Brianna Edwards and Mariana Speckmaier rejoining the group after being away on international duty.

Phoenix women’s pre-season tour:

Tuesday, October 3 vs Newcastle Jets – Pluim Park, Lisarow – 3pm AEDT (5pm NZT)

Saturday, October 7 vs Central Coast Mariners – Industree Group Stadium – 4pm AEDT (6pm NZT)