Isabel Hodgson believes the continuity in the squad in recent years has allowed Adelaide United Women to make a genuine tilt at reaching an elusive top four berth.
Speaking to the media at Coopers Stadium following My Money House’s amazing gesture to pre-purchase all tickets for the Reds’ clash against Western Sydney Wanderers Women, Hodgson said this is their best chance to capitalise and secure an inaugural finals spot.
“I think it’s been a long time in the making,” she told reporters.
“We’ve got a really big core group of girls that have been playing together for a really long time.
“I think it’s the best time ever for us to make those finals.
“We’re no longer teenagers just playing, we’re all in our 20s and we’re really trying to show the league that we’re meant to be there and meant to be in those finals.”
Adelaide lie in third place and Hodgson felt the key to their success this season has been attributed to how the squad has been put together, led by Head of Women’s Football, Ivan Karlović and boss, Adrian Stenta.
“I think the biggest thing is that we’re a core group of South Australian girls,” she continued.
“It’s not bringing in people from interstate or internationals to make the team.
“We bring the internationals in to help us core girls not to make the full team and that really shows on the field because we’ve been playing together for so long.”
The 24-year-old was eagerly anticipating playing in front of a big crowd, suggesting it will give them a massive advantage.
In the reverse fixture a fortnight ago, Adelaide played out a 2-2 against the Wanderers and Hodgson thought had they been at home they would have prevailed.
“I think the biggest thing with Coopers Stadium is that atmosphere and that really helps us,” she revealed.
“Western Sydney who we’re playing, it’s a tough game we drew with them last time and I think if were in front of a home crowd that would’ve pushed us over the edge to get that win.
“So we really want our fans and members to come out and support us to help us get that win and help us get in the finals.”
Hodgson, traditionally a winger, has featured predominantly at left-back this season before switching to right-back with aplomb last weekend against Canberra United Women.
She delivered a pin-point cross to the back post for Chelsie Dawber to side volley into the top corner to open the scoring in the 2-1 win.
“Chelsie Dawber got goal of the week which is a really great thing,” she said.
“We play together in the WNPL (with Adelaide City) so obviously that chemistry is there all year.
“And I think it just showed that I knew where she was without even looking and that’s the chemistry we have on the field which is good.”
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Next match details:
Game date: Sunday, 21 February vs Sydney FC Women
Westfield W-League 2020/21 – Round 9
Kick-off 3.35pm ACDT
Venue: Cromer Park
Broadcast: ABC, Fox Sports
Stream: Kayo Sports, MyFootball Live App