Ahead of Sunday’s W-League Grand Final Melbourne City’s Laura Alleway and Sydney FC’s Alanna Kennedy share with the PFA the build-up to the final, what winning would mean and why a record crowd would mean so much.


Q. Ahead of the season were expectations high at your respective clubs?

LA: Given the players that we had I hoped we would do well, but I didn’t want to put too much pressure on us as I didn’t know how players would gel with each other.

AK: We were confident with the recruitment that we had done that we would do well. We had a big upset in the first game but I think we have gradually built as each game went on and we have now hit our stride at the right time.


Q. What was the feeling like amongst the players coming into the finals series?

LA: I remember reading before the game a tweet by Brisbane Roar that had put the hash tag “underdogs” and I was thinking that was a big call because Brisbane have always been a great team. We never thought that we would walk through to the final. I guess there was pressure, but within the group we kept it under control.

AK: I remember in the change rooms before the semi-final there was a really relaxed feeling among the players and we had a quite confidence and I think that was because we found our stride at the right time.


Q. What was the feeling like at full-time in the Semi-final knowing that you had made the Grand Final?

LA: For my penalty I was not nervous at all, it was pretty bizarre and I think it was because in the back of my head I was thinking someone else will cover me if I miss. It was a great relief when Lisa scored, we knew she could do it, she practices them a lot and we knew with her experience she would score.

AK: We were relieved and excited. As soon as that final whistle went there was a quick celebration but straight away we got focused on this weekend. The Semi-final has given us confidence for the weekend.


Q. How has the build-up been so far?

LA: We have only had the one season so far and we have focused on how we want to play out and what we want to do in the front third. The buzz at training was noticeable and we have another session today. The girls are keen to get out there and hopefully the experienced players can help everyone keep their nerves in check.

AK: It’s all looking really good. We are focusing on ourselves. We have played City a few times this season, and there was a massive difference between the first and last time we played them. We have had a bit more rest then them and hopefully that is an advantage for us. We are keen to get the job done.


Q, How much does this mean to the players?

LA: These are the games you live for. You put so much time and effort into it and everyone wants to play in finals – it the biggest stage you can play on.

AK: I have been in four grand finals now, Sydney FC is the club I consider as my home club and I’m really excited to be in the Grand Final. It would just be an amazing final to win, winning a Grand Final just proves how hard you have worked. For us it would be a massive statement having lost 6-1 in the first round to City. It is going to be really tough but I have confidence that we can get the job done.


Q. How much would it mean to the players to have a big crowd there at AAMI Park on Sunday?

LA: It would be awesome, by the end of the Semi-final the vibe was great, so to have the opportunity to play in front of that many people again would be awesome.

AK: It would be huge. I think women’s football has come on in leaps and bounds and the support of the public has been amazing. It would do the league justice to have plenty of support at the game. The standard has been great and I’m sure people will be impressed if they come along.