It was only goal difference that saw the Wanderers finish second ahead of Brisbane in the regular season but Roar safely negotiated their quarter-final with reigning Champions Victory, though that doesn’t tell the full story. Roar conceded in the 86th minute against 10-man Melbourne, but two late goals saw them through in spectacular fashion as Thomas Broich headed in from a 93rd minute Corona corner.
The Wanderers took advantage of the fact that their last two games were against the Mariners and Phoenix, winning both matches well to move up to 2nd. After they went on a run of seven straight wins early on in the season the Wanderers struggled somewhat before those final two games as they went W5-D5-L5. Their overall record at the Parramatta Stadium was W8-D2-L3, with one of those defeats coming against Brisbane themselves, though that was on the opening day of the season and the Wanderers took a while to get going at the start of the campaign, picking up just one point from their first three games. Indeed, when hosting top-half sides the Wanderers’ record was W4-D2-L0 after that opening game as they only failed to win a pair of goalless draws against league winners Adelaide.
Brisbane also took advantage of their schedule at the end of the season that saw them play five of their last seven at home by winning each of these games, but they failed to win their two road trips in this period. Indeed, that was the story of the season for Brisbane as they were the best side in the division at home, but only Wellington and Central Coast were worse on the road than Roar’s W3-D4-L6. John Aloisi’s side conceded at least three times in four of their last six on the road and when travelling to top-half sides they were W1-D0-L4, with that sole win against the Wanderers on the opening day of the campaign. Brisbane conceded 15 times in these five games, with three defeats by more than one goal.
The Wanderers gained revenge for that early defeat at Brisbane by winning at the Parramatta Stadium soon after and we think they can do the same again here. Since 2012/13, the first season when the finals were in the current format, home teams have won all six of their semi-finals, while conceding just one goal in these games and leading at the break in five of these matches. Indeed, in all finals matches since 2012/13 when the current format was introduced, home teams have a W12-D2-L3 record. As a result, we’re siding with the Wanderers in this one to expose Brisbane’s away form and continue their own excellent home record against the top sides this season.
Recommendation: Western Sydney Wanderers to Win at 2.0
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