Canberra United has announced new head coach Liesbeth Migchelsen. She is pictured, from left, Sally Shipard, Raeanne Dower (assistant coach) and Caitlin Munoz. Photo: Katherine Griffiths
Canberra United is banking on a last-minute bonding session to make up for a month of disrupted W-League preparations as it attempts to break back into the finals this year.
New Canberra coach Liesbeth Migchelsen will wait until the week before the opening match on November 9 to name her captain.
Overseas playing commitments and national team duties mean Migchelsen will only have a makeshift training squad until the end of October. It's a far from ideal preparation after Canberra last season missed the finals for the first time. But Migchelsen is unfazed by the late arrival of some of her stars - including goalkeeper Lydia Williams and her US imports.
''It's really hard to develop your own game strategy, but we'll work with the players we have and eight ACT Academy of Sport girls and two others,'' Migchelsen said.
''The team will be ready for round one. The overseas players are still playing … they are fit, I'm not worried. In one week they'll learn how we play, it won't be a problem at all. We'll just have one week together, but it's up to us to make it work.''
Canberra has finalised its roster for the 2013-14 season.
Williams returns to the team after injury kept her on the sideline last season, and the squad has been boosted by the injection of three US stars - Stephanie Ochs, Kendall Fletcher and Lori Lindsey.
The quartet won't arrive until the end of the month, while Michelle Heyman will be with the Matildas and Jenni Bissett will need an international clearance to return home.
Canberra's first game is against the Brisbane Roar in Brisbane on November 9. Ellie Brush is the front-runner to take the leadership reins again.
Brush has been captain for all five of Canberra's W-League campaigns.
Veteran midfielder Caitlin Munoz backed Brush to lead again.
''I would think Ellie would still be captain, I don't see why she wouldn't. She's done a great job the last five seasons,'' Munoz said.