MELBOURNE VICTORY V WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS Saturday night, Etihad Stadium
What a ripping game we have on Saturday night where the Victory takes on the Wanderers.
Melbourne will have a sour taste in their mouth following their controversial 2-1 loss to Sydney FC last week while the Wanderers drew for the third time in as many weeks when they traveled to Perth.
Kevin Muscat’s side has been very much up and down through the first five rounds. This has been highlighted by losing badly to Melbourne City but then hitting Wellington for six a fortnight ago.
Western Sydney Wanderers are unbeaten in their last four games but three straight draws cover up a slight deficiency in that they probably should have had a few more ‘W’ in the win column.
Etihad Stadium hasn’t exactly been the fortress Melbourne Victory would have liked in recent times, however, it will definitely play in their favour here.
Western Sydney hasn’t beaten the Victory in Melbourne for three years!
TOUGH ROAD TRIP
The Wanderers are coming back from a trip to Perth and now have to play the Victory. Outside of going to New Zealand this is probably one of the hardest back-to-back road stretches in the league.
How it plays out for Tony Popovic’s men will be interesting because they have had a tendency to concede late goals and the travel may play its part in the second half of this game.
What’s worse is that Melbourne’s Marco Rojas and Mitchell Austin have scored two goals each in the final 15 minutes of matches, which is more than any other duo in the comp.
Despite WSW making three Grand Finals since their inception just four years ago, Melbourne has actually had the wood on them.
Kevin Muscat can take solace in the fact his side has won five of the last seven outings against the Wanderers with another draw thrown into the mix.
In three of the last four games, the losing side has been held scoreless (twice for WSW, once for Melbourne).
HOW IT PANS OUT
The Victory will be out to put last week’s disappointing result behind them. At the very worst they should have drew with Sydney but to come away with nothing after having several chances squandered will hurt.
Western Sydney have been hard to get a gauge on this season but we think the back half of this tough fortnight may just find them out.
THE TIP: Melbourne Victory
1ST GOALSCORER: Besart Berisha or Brendon Santalab – both have four strikes so far for the term.