THE next three weeks could make or break Griffith City Football Club’s season as it enters a tough stretch against the best sides in the Griffith and District Football first grade competition.
Fresh off its 4-1 defeat at the hands of Yoogali Football Club at Noe Santolin Oval last weekend, the former competition leader is now grimly hanging onto fourth place.
After its stunning burst of form to begin the year the joint-venture has come back to the pack.
But with five weeks remaining before finals begin, coach Ross Panebianco is backing his men to turn their fortunes around.
“Each team goes through a slump at some stage of the season,” Panebianco said.
“I’ve noticed some other teams have had their slump and now maybe it’s our turn, but we need to get out of it as soon as we can.
“The other sides seem to be strengthening up, but that’s all part of the challenge.”
Yoogali FC was simply too good for City last start as it used the width of the field to its advantage to jump out to a four-goal lead before Griffith City grabbed a late consolation goal.
“It was a very disappointing result for us as a team and as a club, so really now it’s up to the players, if they want to feature at the end of the season they need to lift,” the City coach said.
“Every game is going to be hard for the rest of the season, because I’d say it’s going to go to the wire this year in the first grade competition.”
Five draws in the last seven games have sent Griffith City sliding backwards and diminished its prospects of finishing in the top two.
But in the next three weeks, Panebianco’s side plays Hanwood Juniors, Hanwood FC and Wests Soccer Club, which are all above his team on the ladder.
“They (Juniors) started off quite well in their season as well, but some of the more traditional clubs are coming stronger and that’s probably an indication of their depth and their experience,” Panebianco said.
“We’re not going to give up and we’re still in the fight and there’s still five weeks to go before the finals so there is a lot of football to be played.”
In other results last round, Hanwood Juniors continued their excellent form in beating Leeton United FC 2-0, while Wests produced a stunning attacking display to humble the now bottom-of-the-ladder Yoogali SC, beating them 11-0 at Coro Club Oval.