A-League Round 18: Preview and Betting Tips

The following are previews with betting tips for Round 18 of the 2018/19 A-League season.

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Thursday, February 7

Newcastle Jets

Newcastle Jets v Wellington Phoenix

7:50 PM AEDT, McDonald Jones Stadium
View a detailed form guide for Newcastle v Wellington

Wellington Phoenix

Petratos opened the scoring in the 18th minute, Hoffman got another one only four minutes later, O’Donovan in the 47th minute got the rebound of his own penalty miss and put put it into the back of the net, Ridenton got another one two minutes later and to top it all of O’Donovan made the penalty count in the 59th minute. In total there were three different goal-scorers for Newcastle in their 5-1 demolition job of the Wanderers at ANZ Stadium. They absolutely thrashed them. The Jets were very impressive as they shot 10/19 on target and that was despite only having 60% of the ball. That was while they kept their opponents to just 7/19 on target and the one solitary goal. The Jets also kept it low fouls wise as they conceded just eight. Again that is compared to the Wanderers who leaked 17 in. The Jets also claimed the much-valuable three points despite having only five corners to the opponents 10. The Jets are now only two wins and eight points of the 6th placed Wellington Phoenix. A win here and the gap is only five points!

Wellington need to win this game to again open up a nice double-digits points gap over Newcastle after it was closed to only eight after the Phoenix’s 3-0 loss to the Glory. Wellington had more possession 57%, but they couldn’t make it count as they shot a paltry 5/13 on target. That is while they allowed the Glory to go 11/21 on target. However, passing-wise they were strong at an 87% completion rate, 508/586. They also won more duels, 49 vs 47 than Perth. And they also conceded only 12 fouls. Just some positives in a pretty negative result for Mark Rudan’s side. And as if the result was most definitely not needed after rumours emerged recently that Rudan could be leaving Wellington for a different side at the end of the season, possibly Brisbane. This just added salt to their already pretty bad wounds.

Betting tip: Pick Newcastle to win at $1.83 (Sportsbet)

Also pick both teams to score at $1.61 (Bet365)


Friday, February 8

Brisbane Roar

Brisbane Roar v Sydney FC

7:50 PM AEDT, Suncorp Stadium
View a detailed form guide for Brisbane v Sydney

Sydney FC

Could Mark Rudan be coming to Brisbane come next season, well that’s certainly what the rumour mill would suggest after some reports emerged that he may want to be leaving the Phoenix and that the Brisbane hierarchy want him to be the man to lead them into the future. While free-agent and former Sydney FC man Charles Lokolingoy could be headed to Brisbane after he was recently released by the Sky Blues. He would be a valuable addition up front and would give them a talented youth player on a not so expensive contract. On the field it was all chaos in the Roar’s last second loss to Adelaide. They lost 4-3 after leading 3-0, however the defeat was cosigned to them when Mileusnic scored the 97th minute winner for Adelaide. The Roar opened up the lead after a 9th minute opposition red card. However helping Adelaide’s cause in the crazy come-back was two red cards to Brisbane in a five minute period to Ingham and Young respectively. The Roars goals came via Henrique, Wenzel-Halls and Taggart for his 11th of the season, good for just one of the top of the A-League. The Roar are currently in 9th position as a result.

Ivanovic scored in his first start for Sydney and Le Fondre bagged his 12th of the campaign as Sydney beat City 2-0 at home. However, it wasn’t all easy goings for the Sky Blues as they had to wait until the 86th minute to get their second goal. While, in the 80th minute another Redmayne penalty save, this time on McGree saved them from the draw. He was heroic in this game for Sydney as he made some key saves to stop City from scoring. However, if someone more lethal such as Maclaren had featured, it may have been a bit of a different result for Steve Corica’s 3rd placed Sydney. City owned possession with 63% of the ball and Sydney’s poor shooting didn’t exactly help aid their cause as they went 4/15 on target. The Sky Blues were also very reckless as they gave away 16 fouls. But it didn’t matter cause a win is a win and they are only five points of the 1st placed Glory. And gone is Lokolingoy while arrived are the man affectionately nick-named ‘Gucci’ a former WC player and someone who knows how to find the back of the net and also Mitch Austin, a player with a debut to forget as he missed an easy opportunity on Sunday to claim a goal on his Sydney debut.

Betting tip: Pick Sydney to win at $1.73 (PalmerBet)

Also pick them to score first at $1.57 (Ladbrokes)


Saturday, February 9

Western Sydney Wanderers

Western Sydney Wanderers v Central Coast Mariners

5:35 PM AEDT, Spotless Stadium
View a detailed form guide for Western Sydney v Central Coast

Central Coast Mariners

5-1, 5-1, 5-1!!! That was the score as the Wanderers were absolutely embarrassed on their home-turf by the finals hunting Jets. Mitchell Duke scored roughly 19 seconds into his Wanderers debut, but outside of that there wasn’t much to be happy about for the struggling Red & Black. They gave away two penalties and didn’t do much to inspire the few brave fans who turned up for it. They shot a god-awful 7/19 on target despite owning 60% of the ball. And they gave away a massive 17 fouls as well! However, passing-wise they were very, very good as they completed 82% of theirs, 431/526. That’s compared to the Jets who were at just 69%. The Wanderers also won less duels, 58 vs 44 and less aerial duels 18 vs 16 then Newcastle. The result leaves Babbel’s struggling side only four points ahead of last place. And if it weren’t for the Mariners constantly blowing leads and the utterly dysfunctional Roar then they would be in 10th position. This game could have a massive bearing on who ends up finishing last given it’s the Wanderers 8th vs the Mariners 10th (last).

Andrew Hoole scored two simply sublime goals for his 3rd and 4th goals of the season. Up against the Victory at home the Mariners finally thought they may have done enough for a win. Wrong! Only a minute after Hoole’s second, Melbourne brought it back to 2-1. And come the 88th minute, Barbarouses landed the late and un-fortunate winner for the Victory. When it comes to holding down the fort late in games, the Mariners crumble more quickly then a pie smashed against the ground. They are just simply terrible in those period. Meanwhile, off the field, Cisse has recently retired to take up an academy role with the Mariners. He didn’t really make the impact needed for them, but his experience is bountiful so this may be the best move for all involved. While they further added to their youth stocks by signing a couple of young lads from Sheffield United.

Betting tip: Pick both teams to find the back of the net at $1.57 (Bet365)

Also pick Riera to score at any time at $4.35 (UniBet)


Melbourne City

Melbourne City v Adelaide United

7:50 PM AEDT, AAMI Park
View a detailed form guide for City v Adelaide

Adelaide United

City were quite clearly missing Jamie Maclaren in their 2-0 defeat to Sydney. Huh? What? Yep, that’s right, But just before the transfer window closed City snagged Jamie b****y Maclaren to add to their ranks of talented attackers. The 13x capped Socceroo and 40 goals in 53 games for Brisbane player returns to Australia after a nice stint with Hibernian in Scotland. His ‘should be’ debut against Adelaide will be a major, focal talking point in the lead-up to the game. But in his absence City were sorely lacking as they shot just 4/13 against the Sky Blues. And that was despite them having 63% of the ball. And a crucial moment to come from the match was Riley McGree’s late penalty miss which was saved by Redmayne. Had he made it it would’ve been 1-1, but instead they went down by two goals as they conceded late via a Le Fondre goal. City will be hoping the ex-Glory player can make an impact similar to what Le Fondre’s doing at Sydney i.e. goals and lot’s of them.

Down 3-0 and down to 10 men courtesy of an Ilso red card, Adelaide were looking down and out. However, you just never quite know what the A-League will produce. And that is exactly what happened as Brisbane conceded two reds in a five minute span to bring the game back to life. Adelaide managed to bring it back to 3-3 courtesy of Isias, Goodwin for his 8th of the season and Blackwood. Then comes the 97th minute, Mileusnic finds the back of the net with virtually the last play of the game. The fans are in absolute raptures and so they should be. Adelaide completed the simply insane comeback to win 4-3. This was just a simply crazy game to watch, right through from the start to the very end, the finish. While new signing Jordy Thomassen should bring goals and experience after most recently featuring for De Graafschap. He looks to be a solid signing by Marco Kurz.

Betting tip: Pick City to win at $2.33 (UniBet)

Also pick the first-half to be the highest scoring one at $3.20 (Neds)


Sunday, February 10

Melbourne Victory

Melbourne Victory v Perth Glory

5:00 PM AEDT, AAMI Park
View a detailed form guide for Victory v Perth

Perth Glory

Melbourne came back down from 2-0 down to defeat the Mariners late as Barbaorouses scored the 88th minute winner in what was his ninth goal of the campaign. There was also a CCM OG involved and one to Troisi as well. The Victory owned 58% of the ball and shot 8/17 on target. They also completed 72% of their passes, 321/445. This was a massive win and will no doubt have them all hyped up and ready to go against the 1st placed Glory. And the Victory aren’t all that far behind them in 2nd place either. They’ll be gunning for them, that’s for sure. Two concerns though will be going down 2-0 to a team like the Mariners and that they gave away 16 fouls. If both of those things happen again vs the Glory, the likes of Ikonimidis, Castro and Keogh will make them pay.

Up against the resurgent Phoenix? Call the Glory to the rescue. They killed it in their 3-0 defeat of the finals hunting side. Lowry, Ikonimidis and Keogh all got on board in the route and it was pretty much a 10/10 performance from Tony Popvic’s side. And despite having just 43% possession, they managed to shoot 11/21 on target. They also kept Wellington to just 5/13 on target. The Glory also completed 81% of their passes and gave away just eight fouls. They are in 1st place for a reason and no matter what seem to keep churning out positive results. Despite Ikonimidis missing time due to the Asian Cup, despite injuries and despite line-up changes! They on fire at the moment, it’s as simple as that!

Betting tip: Pick the draw to be the result at $3.60 (Sportsbet)

Also pick both teams to score at $1.61 (Bet365)

Best Bet of the Round

My favourite/best bet for the round is both teams to score at $1.61 (Bet365) between Melbourne and Perth, they each scored three goals last round so why not again this one?!


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