THE burden of expectation weighs massively on the shoulders of Panorama FC in this Saturday's Western Premier League game against Orange CYMS.
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Any time an unbeaten competition comes up against the team on the bottom of a ladder it's often a game where the lower ranked side plays like there's little to lose.
Panorama will still go into the game at Proctor Park as big favourites, looking to maintain OR extend their one point advantage over the pursuing Bathurst '75.
Panorama co-coach Ricky Guihot said CYMS' potential and play style remains a mystery to him, so he's urging his side to just focus on their own game and ignore the ladder situation.
"I've only caught a bit of footage. I've spoken to a couple of the coaches and players who have gone up against them and from all reports they do a few things quite well," he said.
"It's not going to be one of those games you're going to step into and just think that you're going to win.
"There was a season where Parkes were nearly last and came home with an absolute wind in their sail, played brilliant football and became one of the teams to beat. We're only six rounds in so it's not dire for them.
"They can still make a run at the top five. We treat every team in this competition with respect."
Last weekend's close call for the Bathurst squad demonstrated how even this year's WPL is.
With the scrappy manner Panorama managed to take home maximum points last round in a 2-1 win over Dubbo Macquarie the Goats have work to do if they're to not put themselves under a similar amount of pressure this time around.
The second half of that match was perhaps one of the more dishevelled periods of play that Panorama have experienced this season.
Guihot's determined to avoid it repeating when they welcome CYMS to town this weekend.
"Macquarie are a team outside the top five as well and you'd think 'Well the team in first should win this game' but it just doesn't necessarily work like that," he said.
"They came out in the second half and really took it to the boys and we went with them for about 15 minutes, then they killed us over the last half hour and they were probably unlucky not to get the points.
"If you're complacent against any team in this competition you're going to get hurt. For us this weekend it's about sticking to the processes that we know, and getting the result. This isn't a game that I go into saying 'I expect a heap of goals'.
"You become the hunted when you lead the competition. They're coming down here no doubt thinking 'Imagine if our first win was against Panorama, who are leading'. That's the message I'd be selling.
"It's a dangerous game."
Panorama will be calling on a little bit of their depth for this Saturday's match as they'll be without Will Fitzpatrick, Jarred Portegies and Jarvis Callan-McKechnie.
Panorama FC and Orange CYMS FC will kick off at Bathurst from 5pm.
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