In the build up towards the first game of the season for the Heidelberg United senior women’s team, Head Coach Johno Clemente spoke to HUFC media about expectations for the year, new signings settling in and if the previous two cancelled seasons has had an effect on the players.
Since he joined the Warriors in the off-season of 2019, Clemente showed what he is capable of as a coach having won four games before the season was suspended in 2021 due to the pandemic.
He talked about what the preparation has been like heading into Saturday’s match up against Bayside United at Olympic Park.
“The squad is looking really good, the build-up has been great in terms of signing some really good players and they have just come into the squad now, so it has come at a good time,” he said.
With the experience and talent from the fresh faces to add to the current squad, Clemente has got an array of impressive players to work with throughout what should be a normal season.
Clemente mentioned how the new crop of players have settled into the team.
“It has been fantastic, the girls have settled in from a culture point of view really well, and from a football perspective l feel they are going to take it to the next level,” he said.
“We have lots of experience from an international level in the squad, and we have signed some Melbourne Victory academy girls as well.”
With a wide range of players at his disposal, Johno explained the expectations he has for this squad just by looking at the names he is able to pick from.
“If you’re a Heidelberg fan, you should be excited,” Clemente said.
“As a coach when I look at the squad I’m excited by what can happen but have thoughts of realisation that everyone else in the league is good, and it is a tough league.
“But we’re in much better place than we were last year, so I’m looking to watch the team grow and develop.”
Clemente touched on if the players have been effected by the last two interrupted seasons.
“We learnt last year that any game could be your last with government restrictions and all,” he said.
“I think that will be in the back of their minds and the whole league as well to not take football for granted and the girls have relished that.”
Written by Alex Bagdasarian