A-League Best Bets & Multi - Round 26
Just a fortnight out from the finals and positions inside the top six are up for grabs
Sydney FC vs. Perth Glory – Thursday 7:50pm – Netstrata Jubilee Stadium
Sydney FC have everything to play for when they host Premiers Plate winners Perth on Thursday night.
Steve Corica’s side are two points in front of third-placed Melbourne Victory and in a battle to secure a top-two finish cannot afford to drop points here. Benefitting them is their excellent record against Perth which reads just one loss against the Glory in their past 10 games.
Sydney FC did beat Perth over in the west earlier in the season before the Glory knocked them off 3-1 at home back in January.
Perth cannot be caught at the top of the table and the wild celebrations from last week after capturing their first piece of silverware in the A-league may play some part in them being a little complacent here.
With Sydney needing to win, we are backing the Sky Blues to get the money and give themselves a great chance of finishing second at the end of the regular season.
Tip: Sydney FC (Win)
Adelaide United vs. Melbourne Victory – Friday 7:50pm – Coopers Stadium
This game has the sense of a Melbourne win about it.
Neither side are playing particularly well and they have plenty of play for with positions within the top six not set in stone outside of the Premiers Plate.
Victory left it late to beat Central Coast last week while Adelaide drew 0-0 with City. The last time these teams met it was Adelaide which took all three points but it’s been nearly six years since the Reds managed consecutive wins against them.
Melbourne have been strong on the road this season and have secured 23 points on their travels which is third best in the league behind Perth (28) and Sydney FC (24).
Kevin Muscat will be keen to keep the pressure on Sydney FC for that spot in the top two and as a result, we are tipping them to win this by a 2-0 scoreline, which coincidentally is the score from the past two fixtures between the sides.Tip: Melbourne Victory 2-0 (Correct Score)
Brisbane Roar vs. Newcastle Jets – Saturday 5:35pm – Suncorp Stadium
A very difficult game to make heads or tails of considering both teams have had a disappointing campaign.
We are keen on the Jets though who are now officially out of the finals race after losing 1-0 to Perth last week. Ernie Merrick’s side just never got out of second gear this season but they might get something out of this match if you go on historical results.
Newcastle hasn’t lost to Brisbane in their past five clashes, winning four of those while their most recent contest ended in a 2-2 draw. The Jets haven’t minded travelling to Suncorp either as they chase four straight away wins against Brisbane.
The Roar haven’t been totally hopeless in the latter half of the season but will be up against it to reproduce their 2-1 upset over the Phoenix here, especially when they have lost key man Eric Bautheac due to suspension.
Have a ticket on Newcastle to win but they’re only worth a few coins.
Tip: Newcastle (Win)
Central Coast Mariners vs. Western Sydney Wanderers – Saturday 7:50pm – Central Coast Stadium
The Mariners have definitely shown some improvement since Alen Stajcic has taken over as interim coach and we think he will be recording his first win in charge when they host the Wanderers.
With just two wins all season it is hard to back them with confidence, especially since the Wanderers have had their measure in recent outings, winning four straight matches.
Despite that, there has been a spark in the way Central Coast have been fighting of late and that includes last week’s 2-1 loss to defending champs Melbourne Victory where they conceded the late winner.
Although the Wanderers are also on an upward spiral, there could be a bit of a let down having fought hard for a 1-1 draw in the Derby against Sydney FC.
So for us, it’s the Mariners in what should be a tight affair.
Tip: Central Coast (Win)
Wellington Phoenix vs. Melbourne City – Sunday 5:00pm – Westpac Stadium
The stats suggest that the Phoenix will return to winning ways just in time for the finals.
Wellington has lost their past two games but face a Melbourne City side that they have beaten eight times in 12 encounters in the Shaky Isles. What’s more, the home side has won this clash the past five times they have played each other.
That points to a hometown win for the Phoenix. What’s more, City struggle to score goals away from home and have scored the least amount (12) of any team in the competition on their travels.
Tip: Wellington (Win)