Cork City will play their first home game of the Só Hotels Women’s National League this Sunday when they host last year’s champions Wexford at Bishopstown.
The game kicks off at 1 o’clock and is a repeat of last year’s WNL Shield final which took place in Turner’s Cross
City were unlucky not to get anything from their opening game away to Peamount last week after taking an early lead and will face another stern challenge this weekend against Wexford.
Ciara McNamara who led UCC success in the Kelly Cup this week was taking the positives from last week’s clash with Peamount.
“Personally I was delighted to get the season finally underway last weekend. We were disappointed with the result but were happy with our performance as a team,” she said.
“Wexford will prove a tough test this weekend but I have no doubt that we can dig deep a get a result and over all I’m looking forward to season and getting a chance to build on the ground work we did last season and in the close season,” she added.
Manager Rónán Collins could also see plenty of positives from the opening game of the season.
“We were disappointed not to get something last week. We put them under a lot of pressure, particularly in the closing stages of the game. From a defensive point of view I was happy with the second half. The players identified a problem when some of their attackers were getting in behind and they solved it. It’s great to see that sort of development and hopefully that will continue to improve over the season,” he said.
Ahead of Sunday’s fixture Collins is expecting his squad’s depth to be tested due to a number of players being unavailable.
“We will be missing Nathalie O’Brien, our most experienced WNL player, and Saoirse Noonan, our top scorer who is also still recovering from an injury, as both are nominated for FAI awards and need to be in Dublin for that. Eve Badana is in the middle of her Law exams so she’s also unavailable. We will be without three further players who started last week because of international duty, two of these who are senior internationals. You want the option to select from all your players and it’s disappointing that we don’t have that option and that a little help wasn’t given to us. It’s also not a fair position to be putting players in,” said Collins.
“However, we have built a stronger squad who are working hard and we want the squad to keep pushing each other and raising each other’s standards, and players are going to get opportunities” added Collins.