Can Perth continue their push towards the finals as they face the fallen champions?
The Glory are looking for back-to-back wins against Adelaide for the first time in nearly five years and take a highly entertaining 3-2 win over Newcastle into the game.
Adelaide, on the other hand, look like going from champs to chumps and are anchored to the bottom of the A-league table some five points behind the Central Coast Mariners after losing 2-1 to them in Canberra.
PICKING UP POINTS
Perth has points in five of their past six games with the only blip on the radar during that run being two weeks ago when losing to the Central Coast.
All of a sudden the Glory are in line for a top four spot as they are now just two points off Melbourne City and are currently in fifth on the table.
After a slow start to the season they are now one of the hottest teams in the competition thanks largely to the likes of Diego Castro, Adam Taggart and Liam Reddy.
Adelaide coach Gui Amor may not have given up on the season just yet despite collecting just 11 points in the competition so far.
Amor, more than likely preparing for their Asian Champions League campaign than a spot in the finals of the A-league, snared the signatures of veteran midfielder Kim Jae-sung along with Eli Babalj during the week.
The addition of those two players definitely strengthens the squad after losing their star signing Sergei Guardiola, however, it appears too little too late for the defending premiers.
They are 10 points off sixth spot and would need to win all their games, and then require others to drop points in front of them, if they are to make the semis. We can’t see it happening they’ve won two games all season.
HOW IT PANS OUT
Expect Perth to come out all guns blazing.
The Glory are one of the fastest beginners in the competition and have scored first, and early, on numerous occasions throughout the season. Last week’s game against Newcastle is a perfect case in point where they were on the scoreboard within 13 minutes.
That spells danger signs for Adelaide who have struggled to score goals this season and are averaging less than a goal game.
Realistically we can’t see anything but a Glory win here.
Even though their form on the road is below par with just one win and four draws in nine outings away from nib Stadium, the firepower in their ranks should be able to see them through here.
Although their title defence has been limp, Adelaide have started to show a bit of resilience lately and especially at Coopers Stadium. They have won and drawn in their past two starts at home and scored four goals during that span.
That improvement at home, coupled with Perth’s struggles on the road and their defence which is equal worst in the competition along with the Mariners, could give the Reds some hope here.
Hope can take a team so far though and with Perth eyeing bigger fish at the end of the season, their skill and determination should be too much for the crippled champions.
THE TIP: PERTH
TOTAL GOALS OVER/UNDER 3.5: OVER 3.5 – four goals have been scored between the sides in three of their past six clashes
1st GOALSCORER: ADAM TAGGART – is in fine form and you wouldn’t put it past him to register here