The following are previews with betting tips for Round 15 of the 2017/18 A-League season.
Monday, January 8
Brisbane Roar v Sydney FC
7:50 PM AEDT, Suncorp Stadium
Recent Meetings: The Sky Blues have only won 2 of their past 6 clashes against the Roar. However that number is the same for Brisbane, + 2 draws. The last game they played however was an easy 3-1 victory to Sydney in a match that was marred by Avraam Papadopoulos disgusting spitting actions on FC impact bench player Matt Simon. Carney and Mierzejewski had Sydney up 2-0 within the first 15 minutes before Ryall rounded out the scoring for FC. The Roar scored a 93rd minute consolation goal through Jack Hingert.
Will tempers flare again this time around or will the two sides be at peace with each other?
What Happened Last Round: A 2-0 loss for Brisbane sees them currently in 9th position and 4 points out of a finals spot. They managed only 5 shots on target for the duration of the match while they gave away a shocking 17 fouls. While for Sydney in their battle with 2nd placed Newcastle, they came away with a 2-2 draw which leaves them with an 8 point gap at the top of the ladder. However it wasn’t all easy going for the reigning champs as it was only an 87th minute Bobo goal (his 14th for the campaign), which saw them escape with a point. The Jets took the lead through Nabbout in the 10th minute, before only 6 minutes later a Ninkovic wonder goal saw it at 1 goal apiece. While Champness was the other goal-scorer for the Novocastrian’s. Sydney dominated with 62% of the ball as well as nearly half of their shots proving to be on target. They also completed a very good 82% of their passes. This game truly was a reflection of why they are the 2 greatest Footballing sides in Australia at the moment.
What Should Happen: A Sydney win, it’s as simple as that. Through 14 games this season, FC have won 11, drawn twice and lost only once, all the way back in Round 6 against the then very strong Mariners. While the Roar have only won 3 of their 14 matches played this season. Combined with the massive differences between the clubs as well as the talent, Matt Simon will also come into this match highly motivated to compete after the events that transpired in the last game. Expect these 2 defining factors to see Sydney through with their 12th victory of the season.
Betting tip: Pick Sydney to win at $1.65 (TopBetta)
Also pick Bobo to be an any time goal-scorer at $1.61 (Bet365) With 14 from 14 games, he’s a safe bet!!!
Tuesday, January 9
Newcastle Jets v Central Coast Mariners
7:50 PM AEDT, McDonald Jones Stadium
Recent Meetings: 5 goals to 1 was the score when the Jets traveled down the highway to Gosford and absolutely humiliated their rivals. A Roy O’Donovan hat-trick is what won Newcastle the match despite the CCM being up 1-0 within the opening 5 minutes of play via a strike from Asdrubal. The Novocastrian’s found a way to win despite having only 34% possession and taking nearly half the amount of shots that the Mariners took (20 vs 11).
Will the Mariners play ‘proper’ Football this time around? Given how important this game is in the context of their finals aspiring season?
What Happened Last Round: Newcastle remain in 2nd and 5 points clear of 3rd after their hard-earned 2-all draw with the Sky Blues. It was only a late equalizer from Bobo that saw them not claim all 3 competition points. While for the CCM, they are still on the hunt for a finals berth after breaking their 7 hour long goal scoring drought with a 1-all draw with Melbourne up in Geelong. Berisha opened the scoring for the Victory and he would have had a double if it wasn’t for some superb Mariners defence denying him right at the line. While the Central Coast’s goal came through Blake Powell in the 71st minute that ultimately sealed the result for both teams. As a result the Mariners are now only 2 wins of a Top 4 berth with the somewhat inconsistent Adelaide currently occupying that spot. The Central Coast had only 5 shots at goal the entire game, so to get a point is a good result for them.
What Should Happen: A more competitive game this time around, even if Newcastle do end up winning again. Paul Okon all season has preached the importance of what he’s trying to achieve down in Gosford. But even he would realise by now that his side are a legitimate chance of making the finals for the first time under his tutelage. Thus making this game all the more important for his well-balanced side. De Silva missing will be a blow against a very resolute defensive Jets side, but still expect Okon to pull something out of his magic hat to ensure that the Mariners don’t go home embarrassed. Plus it probably helps them that Roy O’Donovan isn’t playing in this encounter.
Betting tip: Pick Andrew Nabbout to find the back of the net at $2.45 (William Hill)
Also pick both teams to score at $1.73 (MadBookie)
Perth Glory v Melbourne City
10:00 PM AEDT, nib Stadium
Recent Meetings: The Glory have come out as winners from their past 3 games against City for an aggregate score of 10-5. Matches between these sides typically tend to be high-scoring affairs. 4 of the past 5 games between these teams have since 4 or more combined goals be scored each time. Diego Castro has found the back of the net 4 times from his past 4 games against Melbourne and is always a threat when playing them.
Will Castro again lead his beloved Glory to a much needed win or will City continue of off their last start victory over Wellington?
What Happened Last Round: City are back in 3rd spot after their 2-1 win over Wellington. City were down 2-1 after a Roy Krishna goal before some Daniel Arzani magic resulted in 2 Ross McCormack goals, which sealed a much needed win for the other ‘Sky-Blues’. As for Perth, they are now out of the Top 6 after their embarrassing 3-0 loss to Adelaide at home. The defeat was so bad that some fans were even calling for Tony Sage and Kenny Lowe’s heads. This while around 95% of the squad can be disappointed in what they tossed up on the field. Joel Reddy again had a ‘what the hell moment’ while coming out from his goals and it was just generally a bad night for the Glory who had only 2 shots on target and gave away 5 more fouls than their opponents. For a team that was expected to legitimately compete this season, the Glory are now 19 points of 1st place.
What Should Happen: More goals. It’s what these 2 sides are best known for when they match-up against each other. Plus with both Reddy and Bouzanis in goals it’s pretty much assured. Who could forget Reddy’s run up the field in a moment of madness during their now ‘inafmous’ 5-4 loss to City? While the ever growing and potent combination of McCormack and Arzani should definitely add to the score-line as well.
Betting tip: Pick a draw to be the end result at $3.60 (UniBet)
Also pick both teams to score at $1.58 (MadBookie)
Wednesday, January 10
Wellington Phoenix v Melbourne Victory
5:35 PM AEDT, Westpac Stadium
Recent Meetings: The Phoenix have won 2 of their past 3 against the Victory. However the last game saw Wellington give up a 2 goal lead (via 2 Kaludjerovic strikes), to lose 3-2. The goals for Melbourne came from Berisha, Troisi and an OG from Goran Paracki. The Phoenix had less possession (only 41%), less shots on target and only had 192 of their 304 attempted passes completed (63%). These 3 categories hurt them in the defeat.
Can Kaludjerovic’s team-mates help him out a bit more in this match or will the Victory continue their hunt for a Top 3 spot?
What Happened Last Round: Both sides suffered results that they did not need. Wellington are still last and looking up after their 2-1 loss to City, in which they led 1-0. While Melbourne fell behind City after their disappointing 1-all draw with the CCM, a game in which they missed a host of chances. Krishna opened the scoring for the Phoenix but it wasn’t enough as Ross McCormack’s 9th and 10th goals of the season saw them steal the win away from under the Phoenix’s feet. However Wellington’s play played a part as they had just 31% possession and 3 shots on target during the whole game. While for Melbourne the likes of Besart Berisha and Jai Ingham missed wonderful opportunities to put the Victory ahead. Berisha was denied by some very good defence, but for Ingham it seems, he’s better suited to playing in a primary-school team as he missed an easy opportunity at the death the deliver his side a win. The Victory had 16 shots on target during the game to the Mariners 5, which makes it all the more concerning that they couldn’t get the victory against a side that’s not even in the Top 6.
What Should Happen: A Wellington Phoenix victory. Yes, you read that correctly, a win to Wellington which would be only their 2nd of the season from a massive 14 games. Recently the Phoenix have been highly competitive despite their results suggesting otherwise. They led 1-0 against City before conceding 2 to Ross McCormack in a 2-1 loss. Before that they drew with the Mariners and had 16 shots at goal. While in the match before that, they lost 4-1 to Sydney despite it being at 1-all and them dominating the 2nd half (Wellington doing the damage). They’re due for a win against a Victory side that may not be as good as people think (despite their recent run of results).
Pick Kaludjerovic to score once again at $2.75 (Bet365)
Western Sydney Wanderers v Adelaide United
7:50 PM AEDT, ANZ Stadium
Recent Meetings: Ryan Kitto strikes in the 46th and 63rd minutes of the match in their last game against the WSW saw them take the chocolates in a commanding 2-0 win. While this game wasn’t without it’s controversial moments with both Cornthwaite and Garuccio seeing red and Diawara missing from the spot. United took 19 shots during the game, while the Wanderers only 8. While Adelaide also had 3x the amount of shots on target that Western Sydney did. A damming stat for the WSW in their defeat.
Will this game have it’s ‘flare-ups’ again? Or will both sides take it a little more easy this time?
What Happened Last Round: United are in 4th after a commanding 3-0 win over the sub-par (to put it nicely) Glory. While for the Wanderers, it was their 3rd victory in their past 4 games, after they beat the hapless Roar 2-0 away from home. WSW continued their recent bit of form nicely with Oriol Riera and Mark Bridge finding the back of the net to deliver them the victory. While that was also Riera’s 2nd goal in as many games, while the same goes for Bridge. Both players are now doing some serious damage under the guidance of Josep Gombau. Because of the win, Western Sydney are now only 5 points of 3rd place. Of a bit of concern for Gombau however will be that his side gave away a massive 27 fouls.
What Should Happen: Robbie Cornthwaite doing something stupid against his former team. This season seeing red, giving away spot kicks and being punished by his manager have all been to common for him. And despite his side doing well and him being a great defender, he can be to erratic at times. This is what results in things going against him and his side. He should have a decent game, but don’t expect it to be completely clean unfortunately.
Also pick the Wanderers to score first at $1.87 (Ladbrokes)
Best Bet of the Round