The following are previews with betting tips for Matchweek 3 of the 2020/21 A-League season.
Friday, January 8
Newcastle Jets v Western Sydney
7:05 PM AEDT, McDonald Jones Stadium
Key Player- Jack Duncan. He has had two previous stints with the Jets, in which he repped them on 45 occasions. He has also played in a total of 13 combined games for Australia’s international youth Football sides.
In his sides 1-0 defeat to the Mariners last round, he made 3 saves, all of which were from outside the box. In addition, more then half of his passes (59%), found their intended man and all 8 of his keeper throws were completed, good for a 100% accuracy rate. And when you look at the Wanderers front attacking trio of Ibini, Troisi and Cox, combined with players such as Georgievski and Baccus in the Midfield, you can see just why and how important Duncan will be to the Jets fortunes in this one. He needs to be on his feet and readily aware for the Jets to have a chance of taking something out of this match.
Past History- The Jets have won 5 of the past 7 contested clashes between these two sides, in what has been an affair they have just simply dominated as of late. That while the other two matches have both been draws. From newest to oldest, their victorious score-lines have been 2-0, 3-2, 5-1, 2-0 and 4-0. They didn’t win the 2-0 encounter until late, but when they turned it on, they were on fire on all cylinders in Newcastle. Thurgate opened the scoring in the 78th min and eight minutes later D. Petratos helped make the score what it was. The Jets shot 10/14 on target that match, with 48% possession of the ball. They also completed 73% of their passes, something which was good for 290/396. And they leaked just 10 fouls as well, with no cards. That while the most recent contested clash, saw a tightly contested 1-1 draw occur at Bankwest Stadium. Kamau drew a foul in the penalty area early on and Duke converted the ensuing spot-kick to open the scoring in just the 5th min. Then in the 74th min Millar scored to make it 1-1. The Wanderers with 45% ownage of the ball, went 7/17 on target, with a shot of the woodwork. And the Jets with 55% ownage of the ball, went 6/19 on target, with a shot hitting the woodwork as well. Will the Jets run away with it, or will the Wanderers make a game of it?
What Should Happen- I think a Jets upset victory is what’s going to happen here. Newcastle fans have been very vocal in their support of their club recently, especially so in-light of certain situations such as the club being temporarily taken care of by the A-League and Bernie Ibini’s acrimonious departure from the club. So, I have no doubt they’ll show up in big numbers this Friday night to really show the players they care about it all and want them to win. And that type of motivation will no doubt spur them on to do something special. And not only that, but they’ll be also aiming to give the previously mentioned Ibini a torturous return to the Hunter Valley, and if they can do that successfully, then that’ll be one of the oppositions main attacking threats down and out. Finally, the history. As talked about, they’ve won 5 of their last 7 clashes against them. For whatever reason, they know how to smack Western Sydney around a fair bit. This ought to be a good night for Jets fans, that I’m sure of.
Betting tips: Pick the Jets to win at $2.90 (Sportsbet)
Also pick them to score first at $2.10 (Bet365)
And pick the 2nd half to be the highest scoring one at $2.00 (Bet365)
Saturday, January 9
Macarthur FC v Wellington Phoenix
5:05 PM AEDT, Campbelltown Stadium
Key Player- Cameron Devlin. His career started of with the Sutherland Sharks in the NPL. Whilst he also previously played for Sydney FC, as well as featuring in the Asian Champions League.
Last round in his side’s loss to Sydney, Devlin was still able to have a fairly influential impact in the Midfield. He had 2 shots and won 100% of his aerial duels (1/1) and 7 overall. He also completed an extraordinarily strong 83% of his tackles, good for 5/6 and he completed 60 accurate passes, good for a 91% completion rate. And the Bulls have shown enough glimpses over their first two matches, that they’ll be an incredibly good attacking outfit for this campaign. And so that’s where players such as Devlin need to be able to help counter that for the Phoenix in this clash. If the 22-year-old can do what he’s capable of doing, then the Phoenix should have a great chance in this one.
Past History- These two teams have obviously never met in the A-League before, but it’s sure to be one spicy affair. Macarthur are coming of a heavy 2-0 loss to the Mariners at home. Whilst the Phoenix are coming of a 2-1 loss to Sydney at their temporary home. So, suffice to say, both sides will be desperate to get back into the winning circle sooner rather then later. The Bulls conceded goals in the 35th and 89th minutes of their match. Whilst for Wellington, it was in the 29th and 55th minutes. And their sole-goal came on the stroke of half-time (46th min), via an off the post effort from Muratovic. The Bulls owned 69% possession of the ball and shot 4/14 on target. Whilst for the Phoenix, they had 52% of the ball and shot 6/21 on target. The Bulls did however complete a very strong 88% of their passes, something which was good for 531/606. And as for Wellington, they were at an 87% completion rate. That being solid for 440/508. When you go back a game further for each side respectively, Macarthur had a great 1-0 victory over the Wanderers in Parramatta. And the Phoenix’s last game prior to the Sydney one, was the 1-0 loss to Perth, also in Parramatta, in Week 1 of the Finals. Will the Bulls be 2/3 after this clash, or will Wellington have their maiden win of the season?
What Should Happen- A Bulls victory. They were of the top of their game a fair bit against the Mariners. But if their previous rounds win over the Wanderers was anything to go by, then they still have a fair bit of class about them. And I really don’t know whether the Phoenix have that this season or not, and it could make all the difference in the world against the Bulls. Against Sydney, Ball looked pretty average, Sotirio lost the ball a couple of times when he should have definitely had the capabilities to hold onto it in what were decent attacking situations and all of Davila’s 4 shots were off target and he was dispossessed 2 times. And with Derbyshire looking to want it so bad against the Central Coast, Puyo just being a little bit off target with his kicks and Genreau making good runs down the side-line, I think that’ll be the difference in this clash. It should be close, but ultimately that’ll be the difference at the end of the day.
Betting tips: Pick the Bulls to be victorious at $2.37 (BlueBet)
Also pick both of them to find the back of the net at least once each at $1.66 (Bet365)
And pick the highest scoring half to be the 2nd one at $2.00 (Bet365)
Saturday, January 10
Brisbane Roar v Melbourne Victory
6:05 PM AEDT, Dolphin Stadium
Key Player- Macaulay Gillesphey. He has previously been a part of Newcastle United as well as Carlisle United. And his first professional game of Football was in 2015, when he played against Liverpool in the League Cup.
Gillesphey was massive in his sides most recent victory over the Victory. He banged in a fine goal and also completed 75% of his passes, good for a nice 38 in total. He also won 4/6 duels and 1/1 tackles. He also won 2/3 aerial duels. The Ashington-born player had a very nice game indeed and that further cemented his status as one of Brisbane’s best players. And given that they lost by 2-goals, the Victory will be hell-bent on revenge in this one, and Gillesphey play’s incredibly close to Jamie Young, so he’ll be crucial in thwarting any of Melbourne’s oncoming shots or attacking chances. If he can successfully do that, then there’s no reason why the Roar can’t make it 2/2 against the Victory from the past two rounds.
Past History- These two teams met just last round and it was all Brisbane, Brisbane, and more Brisbane! They came away from AAMI Park with a thoroughly deserving 3-1 victory. They struck first through McDonald in the 16th min, before McManaman evened up the scores just eight minutes later. Then Gillesphey scored in the 60th min and Wenzel-Halls in the 79th to pull away from the Victory and turn the game into a rout. Brisbane with 42% possession, shot 4/14 on target. That while they also completed 76% of their passes. Good for 309/404. However overall, the Roar have won just two of their last six clashes against Melbourne. From newest to oldest, the Victory’s winning score-lines during that period have been 1-0, 2-1, 5-0 and 4-2. The 1-0 affair came at Suncorp Stadium, as the sole goal of the game was produced via Nabbout in the 19th min. The Victory may have owned just 34% of the ball that game and they went only 4/10, but they produced where it mattered the most! They also completed 72% of their passes which was good for 242/336. And they leaked 13 fouls and 4 yellows. For Brisbane they conceded 16 and 3, respectively. Will the Roar make it 3/3 against the Victory, or will Melbourne reverse last weekend’s result in style?
What Should Happen- Another Brisbane victory. I don’t care how good people say Melbourne’s team looks for this current season, they looked pretty disjointed and at various times disinterested against the Roar at AAMI Park. And I don’t think they can fix all of that in time for this clash, especially with how fluent and powerful the Roar appeared to be. In that match, they had just 2 shots on target, whilst they also won less duels and less aerial duels then that of what Brisbane did. In addition, they also gave up more fouls, 13 vs 8. And yellow cards as well than their opposition, 4 vs 1. I strongly expect for them to make it closer this time, but not close enough.
Betting tips: Pick the Roar to win at $2.25 (BlueBet)
Also pick them to score last at $1.67 (Unibet)
And pick both teams to score at $1.68 (BlueBet)
Best Bets of the Round
Pick the HT/ FT Double to be Brisbane/ Brisbane at $3.75 (Bet365)
For the Bulls vs Phoenix game, pick the total goals to be scored to be 3 at $4.00 (Sportsbet)
And pick there to be at least a goal in each halve of the NEW vs WSW match at $1.58 (Unibet)