Category Archives: News

Freaky Weather Wont Stop The Newcastle Jets

By Simon Kelly

On the opening day of season 22/23 I was one of the few hundred that ventured south for the first instalment of the F3 Derby.

The weather in the form of NSW third La Niña took control of our day out and after some over extended deliberations the Round 1 fixture was called off due to a flooded pitch.

The crowd had sat patiently waiting, possibly even hoping for a minor miracle, and a game to watch. Fans in attendance viewed an osprey fly over the pitch with a fish in its talons. We did joke with all the water on the ground, if it was fortunate enough to be dropped, it could swim its way back into Brisbane Waters.

We watched the Matt Simon tribute and booed him just for old times sake.

One thing that I was confident about was that the weather would surely not play it’s part and cause another Newcastle Jets game to be cancelled.

The Round 16 home fixture against Melbourne Victory produced some testing conditions for the players. A prevailing wind and 27 degrees of heat (crazy 3pm kick off, which apparently will be no more come NEXT season… why wait until then?!!?).

To the players credit they dealt with it and kudos to Beka Mikeltadze for stepping up to take the penalty (and score the opening goal). The ball continued to roll away from the penalty spot thanks to the
wind. The fact that he’d missed his last penalty must have made this all the more harder.

The 2-1 win was deserved and the unfortunate late non VAR call in favour of the Victory was an ironic situation that had social media tongues wagging and Jets fans wryly smiling.

The game against the Macarthur Bulls had already been sensibly put back an hour due to the expected high temperatures. What transpired as the fixture progressed was some of the freakiest weather conditions that the A-League has ever witnessed.

Thankfully the Newcastle players handled the conditions in the earliest part of the game well. Trent Buhagier got his fourth
goal of the season after a well executed pass from Kosta Grozos. The pass got the Jets striker in behind the defence and Jonathan Aspropotamitis inexplicably played the ball back across his own goal. Buhagier gratefully brought the ball under control and hit the back of the net despite Kurto getting a glove on it.

Jack Duncan proven his worth early in the game by reaching up and catching a ball that looked freakishly bound for a goal largely again due to the wind. I have to admit I’ve been one of Duncan’s detractors, but his recent form is proving myself and many others to be wrong. Onya Jack and may your rich vein of form continue.

And then if the wind just wasn’t enough the lightning ensued and the officials brought a halt to proceedings in the 14th minute. I’ve got to admit that Daniel Garb did a great job interviewing players and coaches and kept things interesting for the tv viewers.

More than hour and a half later the game resumed, but a little more than 10 minutes later the officials got the jitters again as lightning struck nearby. To be honest it was looking like they may abandon this game.

Full marks to everyone involved though, officials, players, coaching staff etc and of course the fans that stuck around ( including the very vocal travelling Newy supporters). The game resumed again at 8.35 eventually concluding at 10.

A staunch and resolute Newcastle Jets held out all the Macarthur attacking raids for a well deserved 1-0 victory.

This is now 6 games on the bounce undefeated for Newcastle. So what has changed in the most recent weeks?
The back four have looked progressively like a genuine defence. The
Jenkinson/Jurman centre back pairing for the most part is working. Jurman is looking like the player we expected last season and Jenkinson’s experience and no nonsense approach is first rate.

The starting fullbacks Hoffman and Ingham have played well too. Jason Hoffman shows no signs of giving the game away just yet. Some thought he’d no longer play the 90 plus minutes, how wrong those people are. Dane Ingham can frustrate Newy fans, but his performances this season are easily better than last seasons

I also feel that the recent swap of James McGarry for Thomas Aquilina has worked in our favour. McGarry was good going forward but his defensive positioning left a lot to be desired. Not so Aquilina, who can and probably will play either side in the fullback role.

The recent injury to Reno Piscopo was a genuine blow for the team. Since switching to a more central attacking role had been a big part of the Jets recent resurgence. He’ll be out for at least another three games.

Kosta Grozos has proven to be a handy replacement though, scoring the winner against Melbourne Victory and having an improved performance against Macarthur. Mo Al-Taay has genuinely surprised the Hunter faithful, with Brandon O’Neill injured, he has proved to be a very willing and capable replacement. One thing that’s noticeable is his scanning, or lack of it at times. I’m sure Papas and the coaching staff will improve this over time. It does sound like O’Neill will be back very soon, which gives Arthur Papas a tricky selection decision.

Thurgate has been immense this season and probably Newcastle’s most consistent performer. If he can add a few more goals that would obviously help, but he’ll be a player hard to replace if he does get a coveted overseas transfer.

Beka Mikeltadze is yet to get anywhere near last years goal tally, but he is without doubt contributing. His work rate is phenomenal and his confidence levels are always high. More goals will come his way I’m sure.

Buhagier and Sotirio have been good acquisitions but I sometimes wonder why we aren’t playing more balls in behind opposition defences. They’re both speedsters and surely this is another way of creating more chances.


There’s obviously more players that could rate a mention but Manabu Saito is our highest profile signing (at least in the attacking third) in at least four years. He didn’t see much of the ball in his debut Jets game. It was though a classy cameo. Fantastic first touch, quick to look forward and go forward, whether dribbling or passing. Against Macarthur he took up some great positions, in space, which his own team mates weren’t necessarily seeing. Once he’s integrated fully into this side, I know we’re going to be in for some champagne football.

The Novocastrians next assignment is a flailing Western United at home. If you haven’t been turning up to watch (and plenty haven’t) then get along to Turton Road for the 5pm kick off on Saturday. 26 degrees predicted and no sign of cyclonic storms.

Come On Newcastle.

2020/21 A-League Match Day 2 Preview – Newcastle Jets v Western Sydney Wanderers

2020/21 Hyundai A-League
Match day 2
Newcastle Jets v Western Sydney Wanderers

When: Friday 8th January, 2021
Where: McDonald Jones Stadium
Kickoff: 07:05pm AEDST
Tickets: Ticketek Link
Watch: FoxSports, Kayo App and MyFootballLive app
Tweet: @SquadronNewy @JetstreamNewy #NTUA #MadeOfNewcastle


If you are enjoying the content and can help us to spread the word, please share the episodes on your social media platforms. We are really targeting this season to increase our listenership and word of mouth among supporters is the best way to help that along.

Subscription links and all previous episodes are all available at our podcast landing page

We invite all listeners to send us any questions, comments, feedback, topics, etc you might have:
Facebook –
Twitter – @JetstreamNewy
Instagram – @JetstreamNewy
email –
Join the forums at and go to The Jetstream subforum.

2021 Newcastle Jets W-League Preview

Written by: Dr Emma Beckett

In a COVID-19 re-jigged set of fixtures, January 2nd will see the Newcastle Jets get their W-league 2020-21 season underway against the Western Sydney Wanderers.

It’s the first full season in charge for Ash Wilson, after taking over as Interim Head Coach in the middle of last season, after 5 years as Assistant Coach to Craig Deans. Coming off a (third) wooden spoon performance, the only way is up for the Jets Women. 2021 will be a real test for Wilsons team, in the face of COVID-19 travel restrictions (and likely financial ones too) the squad is built on Aussies and youth. The good news is that most teams in the W-league are in the same boat regarding international visa players, so these challenges might actually be the great leveller for the W-league, which is traditionally rather polarised.  

Key Outs

The opening match will see former Jets Teigan Collister and Libby Copus-Brown in opposition. Collister is now playing for the Wanderers after playing her two first seasons with the Jets, and Copus-Brown moving on after many years and 38 appearances with the club. We also enter this season without mid-fielder Clare Wheeler, who has moved to Sydney FC after 7 years with the Jets. Nicky Flannery has returned to her hometown Canberra United after just one season with the Jets, where the forward scored one goal in 10 appearances.

Key Ins

Canberra and Wanderers have picked up some Jets, but the Jets have also picked up some former Canberra and WSW women. Taren King, Tiana Jaber, Chloe O’Brien and Sunny Franco join the Jets in mid/defensive postions. King should be gunning for a starting position as a defensive-mid, having formerly played for Canberra United, and in 2020 led the Sydney Uni Women’s team to an NSW NPLW Championship. Jaber joins from the Wanderers, where the 20-year old had so far just made one substitute appearance.

Franco and O’Brien have not played in the W-league since 2018, when they both left the Wanderers, but both have been playing with fellow Jet Tara Andrews with Manly United FC, who finished 3rd on the NSW NPLW ladder in 2020. Former Wanderer (2014) and Futsal legend Rhianna “Mini” Pollicina also joins the mids along with Alisha Bass, who appeared for the Wanderers in 2013, before heading to the USA to play college soccer for the Wyoming Cowgirls.

New recruit Sophie Harding will be one to watch this season. The 21-year old is making a step up from the North-West Sydney Koalas in NSW NPLW, where she was a runner up for the golden boot in 2020. Evelyn Chronis  and Jemma House are also making the step from the NSW NPLW into the Jets attacking pack this year.

Key stayers

There is a stable core to the Jets women this season. Gema Simon and Cassidy Davis will co-captain the team, bringing the experience of have over 200 games of W-league experience between them, plus Simons international and Matildas experience.  Both are fan-favourites and hard-working players.

Clare Coelho is likely to retain the starting keepers spot, backed up by Nicole Simonsen. Tessa Tamplin (who played every game last season, and was only subbed off once) will likely be the key to the defensive line up, along with returning defenders Hannah Brewer, Sophie Nenadovic, and Annabelle Martin. The roster seems its lightest in defensive line, so hopefully the girls can stay injury free. Daniel Hanney, W-league correspondent for and Newy Jets fan believes that the defensive structure and hitting on the counter will be a strength.

Pana Petratos returns to the mids after playing all games last season, 3 as starts. Novocastrians love the Petratos family and Pana is no exception. She has played a strong role as a substitute, and we likely to see more field time for her this year.

Tara Andrews will the be key leader of the forward line, with the Novocastrian is the most experienced of the group (and was NSW NPLW Golden Boot winner in 2020), supported by Lauren Allan in her second season in the Dubs. Their experience will likely be the key to getting the most out of Harding, Chronis and House who join with only NPLW and USA college system experience. Daniel Hanney says this combination will have lots of pace.

The supporters.

Claire and Amanda from the W-Jets Active support group sat in their second season as an organised support their mission remains “to make the game day experience as for as possible for the fans and our team”. This season they have solidified the active groups presences with a new logo, which of course called for a new banner and t-shirts. “Emphasising the W in that logo was really important to us, especially as we lead up to for the Womens World Cup on home soil” Amanda said. The Facebook group for the W-Jets Active ( is also an active space -focused on building a strong supporter focused community.

Crowds have grown for the Jets Women in the recent years, and the active support are loud and proud. The smaller stadium at No. 2 Sports ground for home games was well received last season, and hopefully the vibes can continue in a COVID-safe way in 2021. “Our commitment as an active group means we will be at all home games, and as many home games as humanly possible” says Claire.  

The enthusiasm from the active support is clear, they just can’t wait for the season to start.

What might happen?

While the lack of internationals is a set-back, it also means no “stars” are being parachuted into the squad at the last second. The squad has had time to bond and gel, and despite the number of players debuting with the squad into the W-league this year, we also have a solid backbone of return players. If Wilson can capitalize on the mix of this chemistry, and the newbie enthusiasm, we could expect to do better than last season, not that improving on the wooden spoon is hard. But, there’s every chance this squad can give us something to smile about in an unusual season.

Hype-girl, an active supporter, (after declaring her obvious bias) said they think the Jets might be a bit of a dark horse this year. With a new coach, talented young players (including many who have featured for the young Matildas), there is a real excitement to see some young talent emerge and young players from local clubs getting their chances – this is the core of the Novocastrian spirit, we don’t need to win the league to see the wins we can get in the league, be it debut goals, strong new combinations or actual matches won.

Claire and Amanda say they are really optimistic for the season “we have a really strong line up, and experienced women in Ash at the helm, and our W-Jets have always punched above.”

Bring it on.