Central Coast v Melbourne Victory
Melbourne travel up to the Central Coast full of confidence after a solid defensive display saw them secure their first win against the Gold Coast last week. Combined with a wonderful display from Carlos Hernandez and a clinical finish from young striker Robbie Kruse and the Victory look a good bet. With the Mariner’s creative flair Patricio Perez out with a two-match ban, I can see the Victory coming home with 3 points.
Melbourne Heart v North Queensland Fury
Queensland’s Togolese International Eric Akoto will return to the side after serving a one match ban. Meanwhile John van’t Schip’s side are still looking for their first win after being robbed last weekend. The Heart need to sort out their defence if they are to secure a victory here, which could be boosted by the return of Michael Beauchamp, while Aloisi could make his debut.
Sydney FC v Adelaide United
Lavicka’s new signing Bruno Cazarine should make his debut against Adelaide, as Brosque still struggles to overcome injury. Meanwhile Reds’ boss Rini Coolen is wary of the Sydney outfit as they look for their first win this season. The defending champions will be hoping to kickstart their season with a home win against an in-form side. Adelaide however, should pose problems with their attack of Leckie and Flores starting to look dangerous.
Newcastle Jets v Brisbane Roar
Newcastle head into the match with debts and unpaid wages hanging over their heads, as well as a few injury problems for good measure. Nikor Topor-Stanley and Zadkovich are both out, while Sean Rooney won’t be risked despite overcoming a knee problem and Jobe Wheelhouse will also sit out. Some good news is that Chinese import Zhang Shou should make an appearance, while Italian Fiorentini may also feature. The Roar have their own import to show off, with Costa Rican Jean Carlo Solorzano in line for his debut.
Branko has said,
“What happens off the field is out of our control, all we can do is focus what is happening on the park and we need to get ourselves ready for that.”
I’d like to tip the boys to get a win against the unbeaten Roar, though a draw looks more likely.
Perth Glory v Wellington Phoenix
With Wellington usually poor from home, combined with the longest trip in the A-League, this has a home win stamped all over it. Perth will miss the presence of Baird in attack, but with a big crowd they should be able to gain maximum points and there may be a return for striker Mile Sterjovski. Phoenix have included new signing Nick Ward in the squad.
In other news Bruce Djite has joined the Gold Coast from Turkish side Genclerbirligi, who recently took Shane Smeltz to Turkey.