Melbourne City vs Adelaide United, AAMI Park, Friday 28th of October @ 7:50pm AEST.
Melbourne City: $1.75
Perth Glory: $4.20
Anything worth a punt on? – Given the demonstrably incorrect my previous prediction was, I’ll walk back in terms of the ridiculousness of my predictions. Melbourne City to score in both halves for $2.45 seems underpriced.
Last time they met: A 4-1 loss at Coopers Stadium was the disappointing, but not entirely undeserverd end to Melbourne City’s season. Adelaide’s starting line-up for this one will likely include Galekovic, La Rocca, McGowan and Isais from our last meeting, giving a good indication of the change in personal for Adelaide both through transfers and injury, with 4 starting players missing through injury.
Last season’s results: ADL 1:4 MCY (Fitzgerald) 22.04.2016
MCY 3:2 ADL 08.04.2016
ADL 0:1 MCY (Fitzgerald) 11.03.2016
Melbourne City: This preview was either going to go one of two ways depending on the result of Tuesday night’s game. Either we’d lose and klaxons would start ringing at Melbourne City supporter HQ at our third consecutive loss at the Semi-Final stage of the FFA Cup competition as well as a big question mark being raised over how much could be read into our win at Ettihad. Thankfully we won and the only nagging question I find myself asking is – we can put in an excellent shift against Victory and talk about team unity and belief when a derby makes it easy, but there’s 24 other league games in a season, and dropping points when we shouldn’t has become our speciality in the past few years.
The Perth game indicated the importance of effective possession, especially at home. We had the highest average possession of the season so far, but the difference in what we did with it compared to the first two games of the season was marked. We made nearly twice as many passes, but 1 in 4 of Perths passes were long passes, compared to 1 in 7 in our case. Not that this should be overly surprising, given this is how teams will play us for large portions of this year, especially at home (credit where its due to Kenny Lowe, he’s provided a blueprint to follow for the remainder of the year for teams coming to AAMI). Perth’s heat map of possession and player location is one of the oddest you’ll see all year.
Perth Glory heat map, attacking goals to the top of the page. (Image provide from A-league.com.au)
JVS has thus far been loath to change much about his tactics and I don’t think we’ll see much different here, with Bruce Kamau likely to be inserted back into the starting line-up as the only change, depending on how Tim Cahill pulls up on a three day turn around. Players to watch are Muscat and Rose as they reasserted themselves brilliantly after a poor showing against the Glory, hopefully they can both move forward more consistently, Colazo misses after having surgery to repair his inner ear and perhaps the best news to come out of the derby cup win was seeing Ivan Franjic reintroduced to the squad ahead of schedule, even if the current formation that we’re playing doesn’t suit his strengths.
The NYL squad was confirmed this week with many players continuing from last year. Notable exceptions are Stefan Zinni and Phillip Petreski who have been with the club for extended periods of time – it’s been a while since we’ve seen a youngster break from our youth team to move to the firsts. Braeden Crowley (Forward, ex-NQF) and Bradley Clarke (Defender, ex-Dandy City) are the two we’re most likely to see during this season.
Possible Starting 11.
Muscat Jakobsen Rose
Kamou Cahill Brandan
Adelaide United: Adelaide (as most premiers do) have had a major talent drain over the offseason with Goodwin, Mauk, Djite and Kamau all leaving after having good seasons with the Reds. Combined with the current injury toll and you can understand why they’ve only picked up a point so far this year (worth observing that they picked up 3 points until December last year and managed to pip WSW on goal difference), AAMI park has traditionally been a happy hunting ground for the Reds too, having a better record here than at Coopers. Adelaide have played a 4-3-3 through most of this year and the tricky Sergi Guardiola has lead the line well so far, even if he hasn’t hit the back of the net.
Possible Starting 11:
Elrich McGowan La Rocca Garrucio
Makarounas Isais Holland
Choi Guardiola Kitto
Prediction: Melbourne City 2-1 in a relative squeaker. Adelaide won’t look to move the ball as quickly or as long as Perth did which should, ideally, suit the Melbourne City game plan of quick closing and pressure on the ball, tired legs from a midweek cup game will be the evener.
Can we build an eleven from people who’ve played for both teams? We can get bloody close.
Zullo Malik Marrone Garrucio
Duganzic Reid Mauk Goodwin
We’re only a GK short, with room for Iain Ramsay, Brent McGrath, Jacob Melling, Ruon Tonyik and Kristian Sarkies on the bench.