Are Perth finally starting to make their move to seriously challenge the top two?
The Glory have won four of their past six to sit in fifth spot on the table and are playing their best football of the season as highlighted by their 5-0 thumping of the champions in Adelaide in Round 19.
Brisbane missed a golden chance to peg back some points on Melbourne Victory in second after blowing a two goal lead against City to eventually share the points.
After a busy schedule over the past fortnight which has included two Asian Champions League qualifiers, a trip to Perth is the last thing that coach John Aloisi would’ve wanted.
Perth are enjoying their best run of the season having picked up points in five of their past six games.
Funnily enough the only two teams that have taken points off them during this span are based on or near the Hunter Valley in Newcastle and the Mariners.
The Glory traveled to Newcastle five weeks ago and shared the points with the Jets but then a fortnight later returned to play Central Coast but were shocked 2-0 in a game that goalie Liam Reddy was sent off. Their sudden phobia of playing against the Mariners has seen them drop consecutive games to them and in both they’ve been kept scoreless.
Since that loss they’ve recorded consecutive victories by an aggregate score of 8-2.
If the Roar are travel weary then you can hardly blame them.
A trip to China last week was rounded off with a visit to AAMI Park and now they find themselves on the other side of the country to play an in-form Perth outfit.
Brisbane has now gone four straight games with at least a point with their past two performances producing draws against Sydney FC and Melbourne City.
Aloisi’s men have been consistent for most of the year but their performances on the road are nowhere near as good as those as Suncorp. The Roar has picked up 13 points on the road this season which is good enough to put them third in the league for that category, however, when you think that it’s half the points that Sydney FC has taken on away trips then it really puts it into perspective.
Brisbane has not beaten Perth in their past four away fixtures so that is definitely a concern for the Queenslanders.
When looking at recent history they’ve only played once this season and Brisbane were able to get the points, at home, 2-1.
You can expect both goalies to be busy here with an average of 3.66 goals between them during their past six clashes.
Perth have a golden chance to leapfrog Brisbane on the table here as there are only two points separating them.
Star player Diego Castro has been in rare form lately and that came to the fore with four goals in the past two games. He, along with strikers Adam Taggart and Andy Keogh have started to find the back of the net with regularity of late and that spells danger signs for the Roar.
Brisbane’s defence, however, has been one of the best in the league throughout the season and their 23 conceded is second only behind Sydney’s ridiculous nine! A deeper look at that though sees that they have copped 15 of those on the road.
Perth, as you would expect, are one of the better home teams of the competition too with five wins and two draws from nine games at nib Stadium. That alone gives them a pretty big advantage over a side that struggles to pick up maximum points on the road.
This will be a tough game no doubt about it but Perth are starting to look really good and at home, we cannot tip against them considering the amount of travel and games the Roar have had lately.
THE TIP: PERTH GLORY
TOTAL GOALS OVER/UNDER 2.5: OVER 2.5 – it rains goals when these two play!
1st GOALSCORER: DIEGO CASTRO – why not? He’s scored the opener in Perth’s past two victories