UP AND DOWNWellington showed exactly what the team was capable of when they smacked Melbourne Victory 3-0 just a few weeks ago. Since then they dropped a 1-0 decision at home to Brisbane after conceding late and then they drew to Adelaide in a game they probably should have won. Leading 2-1 just before half-time, Wellington had a great chance to go two goals up but squandered the chance. In the end it came back to bite them with Adelaide scoring late to equalize.
WANDERING ABOUTThe Wanderers season has just plodded along without gaining any real momentum. They looked really good in patches against the Roar and did extremely well to claw back an early goal, however, having Scott Neville sent off in the final 10 minutes put them on their heels. The late error by goalie Vedran Janjetovic gifted the win to the Roar and left Tony Popovic’s side with just one win in their past eight games.
THE HISTORYWestern Sydney have had the better of Wellington in recent times, winning three of the past six. This will be the Wanderers’ second trip to New Zealand this season after the teams shared the points, 2-2, back in mid-December. Goals definitely aren’t hard to come by when these two clash with an average of 3.16 between them in the past six games.
THE VERDICTFunnily enough the statistics suggest that this fixture will actually suit both sides. The Phoenix have captured 14 of their 19 points at home while the Wanderers can boast winning more points on the road (10) than they have at home. Western Sydney will fancy their chances with Terry Antonis getting a bit more match fitness under his belt while the signing of veteran Ryan Griffiths during the week gives Popovic some options. You feel that it’s getting desperate for both sides now with just 10 games out from the finals and the Wanderers are a club that expect finals footy every season. Can that alone help them to secure the points on one of the toughest road trips of the competition? Wellington will be ruing their missed opportunity against Adelaide last week and will have their eyes on all three points here, however, are they going good enough to break down their opponents?
THE TIP: Western Sydney Wanderers
TOTAL GOALS OVER/UNDER 2.5 Overs