A-LEAGUE WEEK 23
MELBOURNE CITY V NEWCASTLE JETS
The second half of the split round gets underway in Melbourne where City will look to cement their third place spot and more importantly, a home final, when hosting the Jets this Saturday. They'll have to do it without Fernando Brandan who is out for the rest of the season with an ACL injury. They'll also be looking to give youth a bit of an opportunity which could cause problems for Jets or backfire for Melbourne.
Melbourne's home record against the Jets speaks for itself, with the Jets unable to claim three points when versing City in Melbourne in their last eight attempts. In those eight attempts, 5 of them were victories. Although Newcastle have managed to scrape together a few wins in their more recent outings, these have all been at home or at neutral venues and i can see City being too good here again.
Even with the likelihood of a few key players missing and with the split week making players somewhat rusty, i believe Melbourne will do what it takes to get across the line here. They haven't been dominant in recent times and i expect Jets to put up a small fight, but Melbourne should still be the better team and come away with the 3 points.
City by exactly one goal3 at 3.50-3
ADELAIDE UNITED V BRISBANE ROAR
A spirited display midweek against superior opposition will no doubt give Adelaide a massive boost when hosting the Roar. If they want to stand any chance of avoiding the seemingly inevitable wooden spoon then they'll need to take all three points here. They are currently five points behind their nearest rivals and only a win can keep their feint hopes of avoiding embarrassment alive.
The Roar have played midweek against a Japanese team who thoroughly taught them a lesson and one has to question what state they'll be in, physically and mentally after travellign extensively in the past week. If the Roar had gone to Japan and won easily then you'd be less worried about their mental state, but nobody likes losing and nobody likes travelling to lose so the ball is well and truly in Adelaide's court here.
I'm going to be in Adelaide's corner for this one. Brisbane have been unimpressive and far too sporadic in recent times and i feel as though everything in swinging in Adelaide's favour at the right time
WSW V WELLINGTON PHOENIX
The last game of the week lies in Western Sydney where the Wanderers will attempt to continue on their unexpected winning ways. They secured an unthinkable 2-3 away victory to Asian counterparts, Seoul FC and hosting the Phoenix can only be considered an easier task.
Both of these squads are in a critical spot in their season, sitting in sixth and seventh respectively and if either side manage to nick the three points, then it could read game over for those final hopes for the season. There are only four rounds left in this season and not much time to crawl back points, especially with harder teams to verse.
Both sides have been horrible when being the hosting team, with WSW recording a massive 2-5 loss back last year when Phoenix tore them apart. I feel as though WSW will be playing for more when the sides kick off and when they have those fans behind them, it'll be the extra effort that WSW need to get them over the line. There will be goals in this one and i could recommend taking WSW and over 2.5 goals, but i think i'll play it safe and go with my initial thoughts.?
WEEK RESULTS STAKES ROI Grand Final -5 5 -100% Finals Week Two +23 10 230% Finals Week One -10 10 -100% Week Twenty-Six -6.65 15 -44% Week Twenty-Five +12.9 22 59% Week Twenty-Four -2.5 14 -18% Week Twenty-Three +15.83 19 83% Week Twenty-Two -11.25 18 -63% Week Twenty-One -1.79 16 -11% Week Twenty +2.24 16 14% Week Nineteen +20 11 182% Week Eighteen +12.16 11 111% Week Seventeen -5.88 15 -39% Week Sixteen -2.5 11 -23% Week Fifteen -15 15 -100% Week Fourteen +0.93 17 4% Week Thirteen +5.5 13 42% Week Twelve +3.05 18 17% Week Eleven -7.18 13 -55% Week Ten -2.07 18 -12% Week Nine +0.51 15 3% Week Eight -20 20 -100% Week Seven -3.22 16 -20% Week Six +10.2 14 73% Week Five -16 16 -100% Week Four -0.27 15 -2% Week Three -4.6 13 -35% Week Two -0.70 12 -6% Week One +1.05 12 9% Total -7.24 420 -2%