With the round split into two, here is a preview into the second half of Round 20 in the Hyundai A-League.
Western Sydney Wanderers vs Newcastle Jets
Western Sydney will be looking to continue their good run of form against high flying Newcastle on Friday night as they look to jump above Melbourne Victory into fifth position. After a demolition of Wellington last week, the Wanderers will be looking to continue their great run of form under Josep Gombau.
Newcastle on the other hand, have a great chance to extend the gap between them and 3rd place Melbourne City to seven, after City were demolished 4-0 last week at the hands of Sydney FC.
Newcastle won the reverse fixture in December, demolishing the Wanderers 4-0, but the Wanderers are much more confident and playing better football this time around. This looks like it will be an entertaining encounter, where I’m expecting the points to be shared.
Prediction – Western Sydney Wanderers 1 – 1 Newcastle Jets
Wellington Phoenix vs Perth Glory
Wellington will be looking to bounce back from back to back 4-0 losses in the last two weeks as they welcome Perth Glory to Westpac Stadium.
Wellington, it appears won’t be apart of finals football this season, having only won three games to date this season. Perth Glory will be looking to start their assault at the top six this weekend, with this a very winnable game. Perth could possibly sit seven points outside the top six if they fail to beat a hapless Wellington side this weekend.
Andy Keogh has scored in his past two games which is a worrying sign for a struggling Wellington defence. Wellington won 5-2 against the Glory at the start of the season at Westpac Stadium, which should give them some confidence. Perth Glory, however, will be too strong this time around.
Prediction – Wellington Phoenix 1 – 2 Perth Glory
Adelaide United vs Central Coast
Adelaide has been very solid this season and come into this game at home full of confidence. They are undefeated in five of there last six games which has included a spirited 0-0 draw with ladder leaders Sydney at home a couple of weeks ago.
If they can defeat the Mariners on Saturday, they will only be within two points of 3rd place Melbourne City.
Central Coast however, will be hoping that a win away from home can put them in some striking distance of the finals with seven more games to play after this one.
With a win they will be sitting seven points out of the six if the Wanderers win, six points out if they lose, so the Central Coast need a win if they want to play finals.
I can’t see Paul Okon’s men coming out with a win, with Adelaide already defeating them two times this season. It’ll be interesting to see if Ryan Kitto can get onto the score sheet, having scored a goal in the two other encounters this season.
Prediction – Adelaide United 2 – 0 Central Coast Mariners