The time is now: United rally the troops for late-season charge

June 13, 2024 BY

Owen Odigie is set to return to the line-up this weekend, recovering from a hamstring injury quicker than expected. Photos: CHARLIE YOUNG

A MUST-WIN matchup awaits Geelong United’s men on Saturday night, with seven games to go in the season.

With his side sitting a mere two and a half games out of the top eight, head coach Grant Wallace said United would be at full health for the first time this season in two days’ time, with Owen Odigie expected to return to the line-up after sustaining a hamstring injury in mid-April.

“12 weeks recovery time was what Owen was given when he first sustained the injury.

“He has just done everything he can to get himself back on the floor and has recovered extremely well. He’s passed all of the relevant tests.

“We’ve really missed him in the rotations, so that has changed our focus a bit. It’ll be the first time our side has been fully available this season.”

Captain Demarcus Gatlin (hamstring), big man Ma’alo Hicks (foot), and defensive specialist Cohen Blythe (illness) are all on track to be included in time for the clash at home against Melbourne.


Geelong United sits two and a half games out of the top eight.


Wallace said the team’s youngsters would also need to make their mark in the back half of the season, with players such as Blythe, Jay Posterino, Marach Marach and Max Zalakos already getting several appearances under their belts in 2024.

“They’ll need to step up lots in this portion of the season.

“That has been my whole reason for the appointment, growing the local talent we have here in Geelong, not recruiting, which comes with challenges and risks.

“If you don’t get them in to play, then there’s no room to grow and develop, so we’ll keep living and dying by the sword there.

“We just need to keep growing those guys and ensuring there’s a future for the club.”

Geelong will enjoy a nice stretch of home games over the next month, with four of its next five matchups to take place at Geelong Arena.

United will line up against Melbourne (12th), Hobart (6th), Nunawading (11th), Casey (19th), Dandenong (4th), Knox (9th), Waverley (5th), and Wallace’s former side Diamond Valley (17th) to conclude the season.