This Sunday it’s the turn of WaiBOP United’s youth team to head to the deep south as they wing their way to Dunedin for the latest game in the 2015 ASB Youth League.
The side picked up their second, and largest, win of the season last weekend – 5-1 over Hawkes Bay United – but head coach, Michael Built, knows Southern United away will be a completely different proposition. “I was pleased with the way things went against Hawkes Bay on Sunday, but Southern United, in Dunedin, will be a real challenge on several levels,” he explained. “There’s the travel to deal with, which will play a part, so we have to make sure the boys stay focused and disciplined throughout the weekend. Then there’s Southern, who currently lead the ASB Youth League, and will probably be our toughest footballing test of the season so far. It’s a tough ask, but we know that if we can squeeze out a result then we’re right back in the title mix.”
The next couple of weeks will be telling for Built’s side. “Yeah, we’ve got the current top two sides, away from home, in our next two games,” he explained. “After Southern, we play Team Wellington, who actually beat Southern last weekend, down there. These games, I expect, will define our season.
“I’m not sure who put the draw together, but they didn’t do us any favours,” chuckled Built. “Having said that, we’re trying to develop players for the 1st team, so we’ll be looking at how they respond to tests like this. I’m looking forward to it, and I know the players are too.”