The Sunday Mail (Queensland)

Youngsters may settle the decider

- TOM SMITHIES

IT’S the clash of the young stars that could decide the destinatio­n of the W-League title – and shine a light on the future of the Matildas.

Of all the battles when Sydney FC host Melbourne Victory in today’s W-League grand final, which of Remy Siemsen or Kyra Cooney-Cross emerges as the key player on the day could go a long way to deciding the outcome of the final.

At 21, Siemsen (left) has already been the W-League’s young player of the year and joint Golden Boot even before scoring seven goals in this campaign, while CooneyCros­s has been dubbed as the Matildas’ “next superstar” at just 19.

Both are on the radar of new Matildas coach Tony Gustavsson, and former Matildas great Kathryn Gill – now joint CEO of the players associatio­n – said the clash of styles between Siemsen as a pure striker and CooneyCros­s’s all-round attacking game would be pivotal.

“Remy’s really good at getting in behind defences, hanging on the shoulder of the last defender – she can exploit space brilliantl­y,” Gill said.

“Her runs are really smart and she’s pretty clinical when she gets half a chance to find the back of the net.

“Her runs are instinctiv­e, defenders have to spend the whole time working out where she is and how they need to respond.”

W-League Grand Final

Sydney FC v Melbourne Victory Today, 4.05pm, Jubilee Stadium

Live on Kayo, Fox Sports

TAB: Sydney FC $2.30, Victory $2.65

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