FEATURING in the semi-finals this year could end up being Chris Williams’ finest achievement at the helm of Manly United.
When you consider he won a grand final in 2017, it is some statement.
Williams is an astute coach, but on paper this campaign looms as a testing one – not that he is overly concerned.
“There is no doubt we have lost some quality players – but you move on,” he said.
“You can’t replace the likes of Alice Wilson, Bella Walker and Jess Sekulich overnight, those girls were part of the furniture for many years.
“They are all pursuing other things in life, that is the reality of part-time football.
“Nothing lasts forever – now we need a stack of new faces to come in and show me what they can do.”
It isn’t all doom and gloom for Williams.
He effectively has two ‘new’ players at his disposal in the form of Sophie Nenadovic and Ruby Jackson, with the pair on the comeback trail from injury.
Local junior Chloe O’Brien was the obvious choice to assume the captaincy, according to Williams, and Hannah Peric and Bryany Parker have jumped ship from the North Shore Mariners.
“I’m excited, it feels like we are starting again,” Williams said.
“We have a good core group of quality players and Ally Green will be brimming with confidence after her great season with Sydney FC in the W-League.
“Macarthur first up is tough, but bring it on.”
Adding some spice to Sunday’s game at Cromer Park is ex-United premiership players Tash Prior and Nikola Orgill on the Rams’ team sheet.
Kick-off is 3pm.