A big milestone will occur this weekend when the St George FA Men’s State League team debut against Bankstown United in Round 1 of the Football NSW State League competition.

The SGFA will be competing for the first time in this competition and ensures that talented players within our region have a pathway from junior, youth and through to senior football, in line with our strategy and vision for football.

The seniors program comprise first grade, under 20s and under an 18 team and will play its home matches at Peter Moore Park in 2016. The side is coached by Manny Spandoudakis and the Club Captain is former Perth Glory player Adrian Webster.

Round 1 Fixture:

Date: Sunday, April 3

Time: 5:00pm (1st grade), 3:00pm (U20), 1:00pm (U18)

Venue: The Crest Athletic Centre, Bass Hill.

Preview: Football NSW State League Men 

The Football NSW State League Men’s season is due to kick off this weekend, with twelve highly competitive clubs looking to get off to the best possible start.

Wagga City Wanderers vs. Prospect United – Saturday 2 April, Rawlings Park at 3PM.

After a hugely disappointing 2015 season, which saw them finish bottom of the table, Wagga City will be looking to prove they have what it takes this year.

Having won only a single game last season, the Wanderers are determined to match that tally as quickly as possible; and could do so in their Round One fixture against Prospect United.

The task at hand will not be easy however, facing an established outfit who will be looking to build upon their strong performance in 2015.

Prospect came fifth, narrowly missing out on Finals football – a target which they are committed to reaching this time around.

Wagga City conceded the most goals last year and it will be interesting to see whether they have managed to solidify their defensive unit over the offseason.

United will look to win convincingly, signalling their ambitious intent. The Wanderers will be ready to punish any complacency.

Nepean FC vs. SD Raiders FC – 7PM Saturday 2 April, Cook Park.

Relegated at the end of last season, Nepean FC are targetting nothing short of promotion this season. The western Sydney based outfit will face the SD Raiders FC on Saturday, looking to get off to a flying start.

Southern Districts were hugely impressive in 2015, finishing in third place before winning the Grand Final against Dunbar.

They were the league’s most prolific team, scoring fifty seven goals over the course of the regular season. However, it was their defence that impressed most during the Finals Series, in which they conceded no goals.

This Saturday, the Raiders will be looking to pick up where they left off, in what should be a tight and enthralling fixture.

Gazy Auburn FC vs. UNSW Lions – 3PM Sunday 3 April, Progress Park.

Both Gazy and UNSW settled towards the bottom half of the table in 2015, and will be determined to make more of an impact this season.

Facing off at Auburn’s Progress Park, both sides will be confident of their chances and excited to get their season underway on the best possible foot.

The game may be decided by the narrowest of margins; Gazy frustrated onlookers with their leaky defence last year, however UNSW scored the least of any team. It will be exciting to see who has addressed their issues more effectively over the offseason.

Western Condors FC vs. Hurstville City Minotaurs – 3PM Sunday 3 April, Stanwell Oval.

Western Condors FC had a successful 2015 season, but their fourth place finish and heavy defeat in the first round of Finals will have left a bitter taste in their mouths.

The Hurstville Minotaurs will be extremely disappointed with their efforts last season, where they finished second last; in stark contrast to rivals Hurstville FC, who came second.

The offseason has provided them plenty of time to bolster across the park, and they will be looking to start positively. However, the Condors are strong favourites on paper.

Camden Tigers FC vs. Hurstville FC – 5PM Sunday 3 April, Australian Access Hire Stadium.

The Camden Tigers will look to start their season strongly at home this Sunday, hosting Hurstville FC at the Australian Access Hire Stadium.

Camden finished right in the middle of the table last season, but will feel ready to make the next step. Their season opener couldn’t be any more challenging however, taking on last year’s second placed Hurstville FC.

Hurstville were incredibly impressive in 2015, and tore away from the rest of the pack alongside (eventually promoted) Dunbar in the regular season. Their defensive unit was particularly notable, conceding only fourteen goals all year.

Amidst high expectations for a successful season, Hurstville will be feeling the pressure this Sunday. Camden will be quietly confident of their ability to emerge with all three points.

Bankstown United FC vs. St. George FA – 5PM Sunday 3 April, The Crest Athletic Centre.

Two newcomers to State League Men’s football will face off this Sunday, with Bankstown United FC and St. George FA looking to introduce themselves with a bang.

Bankstown United represents the Elite Development pathway for players in the Bankstown Football Association, where St. George FA represents the St. George Football Association.

Straight into the thick of things, neither side will be happy to settle for anything less than a win to celebrate the beginning of their journey into the competition.

-by Daniel Palmer, State League Men’s Reporter.