The opener this week sees Melbourne City return from their bye refreshed and ready to take on Perth Glory. Bruno Fornaroli comes up against his former club for the first time and anything extra he can bring against his old club will be appreciated.
Perth are last on the ladder with one win so far and Fornaroli along with the rest of his team need to step it up. Comparisons are being drawn with Melbourne City’s top scorer Jamie Maclaren who has nine goals so far and Maclaren is coming out on top.
In their last game City pulled off a comeback to take the points against Western Sydney (courtesy of Maclaren). Perth suffered a loss to Victory despite having possession and twice as many shots, taking them to the same number of losses as last year’s title winning campaign. If Perth can’t pick themselves up City will keep pushing for the title.
Wellington took all the points in their last clash against Adelaide, making it two wins in a row and showing they have the quality to see off some of the better clubs. They come up against another challenge this week in the form of the Wanderers who started well and have fallen away of late.
Two late goals last week handed Western Sydney their third loss in a row, almost the reverse of Wellington’s form. Goals are expected with the Phoenix yet to keep a clean sheet and the Wanderers conceding every time they travel. A win for the Kiwis could see them enter the top five while the Wanderers need it to keep up with a high-achieving top two.
Sydney will want to continue their good form when they host Brisbane having won their last four games to lead the ladder. The Roar have had more variable form and currently sit in sixth with the table still very close. The Sky Blues’ last game was a win over Western United with two goals for Le Fondre as he tries to keep up with Maclaren. Sydney did not have the majority of the possession but were much better in the final third.
Brisbane’s last game also saw a 2-0 win in a close game to recover from their loss the week before. The last time these two met was the FFA Cup earlier this season when Brisbane won so revenge may be on the minds of the Sydney players. Brisbane are still yet to score in the first half of a game whereas Sydney have scored the opener five times this season and gone on to win all five of those games. This could end up close with Sydney just pipping the Roar with a first half lead.
Western United started strong but are on a three game losing streak and also on three games without scoring. Victory have scored in every game since round won and picked up an important win last week against Perth, their second of the season. Although they are still suffering their worst start to a season ever that will give them some hope ahead of this rematch.
Their last meeting in round four ended with Western United 3-2 comeback winners after going 0-2 down in ten minutes. This time the game will be in Geelong potentially giving Western United a much needed edge to reignite their form, otherwise Victory could find their season picking up.
Adelaide suffered their first defeat in a while last week against Wellington and are back in action on Sunday against Newcastle. The Jets pulled off two goals in the last twenty minutes to grab their win over Western Sydney and make it two in a row. Another team who struggled initially, the Jets are taking off now and three points this week would make a difference to their position.
The last five meetings between these clubs have ended without a Newcastle win and their game in round three was Adelaide’s first win of the season, sinking the Jets 2-1 after coming from behind.
This week the bye goes to Central Coast as they get time to try and improve on their poor results.