In A League of Its Own- Edition 17

Tom’s weekly outlook on the A-League

They say that the ladder never lies, and I agree. This season’s A-League is just past midway through, and like in the EPL over their Christmas break, you’ll often find that the table doesn’t change too much from halfway until the end of the season. But this season in the A-League there may well be changes to the table come season’s end and feel free to take me up on this at the end of the regular season if I’m wrong. Sydney – tenth right now – will end up just outside the top six, coming seventh. Gold Coast on the other hand – despite having had just the one loss this season (to Melbourne Victory, thank you very much), will drop from third on the table to sixth, just scraping into the finals series.

Adelaide made the trek to Melbourne on Friday night, where they were searching for their first win here in over three seasons. Yes 3! Losing their last 10 to Melbourne Victory is very much the reason why they hadn’t won here for that long until Friday night. Trust the newcomers to ruin a perfectly good record. In a game where the 6,500-odd Heart supporters witnessed a Reds win, Melbourne Heart didn’t show anything at all. Robert Cornthwaite and Marcos Flores scored for the visitors in a comfortable 2-0 win. Adelaide have broken their long drought in Melbourne, but expect the Victory one to continue.

Saturday afternoon pitched Wellington against Newcastle and Brisbane against North Queensland, in a day of the smaller teams showing what they have to offer. The one exception being Brisbane, the answer was: Not much. Newcastle continued their surge of form with a win over Wellington at home, which will hopefully bring more fans to EnergyAustralia Stadium in the future. Marko Jesic also continued his good form of late, scoring to hand the Jets a 1-0 win over a Wellington Phoenix who are only going downwards. In the other game, Brisbane Roar got a wake-up call from inconsistent North Queensland, drawing 1-1, but having to find an equaliser for 80 minutes. Following former Tranmere Rovers player Gareth Edds opening the scoring in the ninth minute, Ivan Franjic made sure his side didn’t lose to the Fury by scoring not long from time.

Gold and Central Coast’s met at BlueTongue Stadium on Sunday for Central Coast’s first home game in 6 weeks, and Gold Coast looking to take their unbeaten streak to beyond 11. The two first half goals came from either side; Matt Simon sliding in to score and Dino Djulbic replying soon after Simon’s effort. Tahj Minniecon came on as a second half substitute for United, and made an immediate impact, setting up Steve Pantelidis for his first ever A-League goal. But the Mariners equalised 2 minutes after, with a goal by Adam Kwasnik. The last twist in the tale was Gold Coast’s last goal and winner, which came from Andrew Barisic 15 minutes from time. Gold Coast now move to third with that win, and puts them in good stead for a go at the finals.

Sydney FC were made to play at Parramatta Stadium on Sunday, and it paid dividends, with a 2-0 victory letting Alex Brosque regain some form in his 100th A-League appearance. After a scoreless but explosive first 45 minutes, the hot weather seemed to have taken its toll on the players in the second half, until Shannon Cole was played through by a teammate on a break, and he slotted it home to put the home side 1-0 up. Alex Brosque then made it 2-0 soon after, when he was also played through, rounding the keeper and putting the ball in the back of the onion bag.

This weekend, catch Melbourne Heart host an in form Sydney at AAMI Park on Saturday at 8.15. Even though the real rivalry lies with the Victory, anything with Melbourne on it has Sydney teams desperate to beat them, and I’m sure it will be a tense and physical affair.

About Tom Riordan

Tom Riordan is in his second year of a Bachelor of Journalism at Swinburne University. He loves all sports, and plays for Brunswick Cricket Club. He supports the Western Bulldogs and can be found on weekends among half a dozen others in Q38 on the top level of the MCC.

Comments

  1. I seem to have called Heart’s rise a smidge early…3 losses on the trot since!
    Brisbane clearly the pacesetters (that should stitch them up!).

  2. Martin Reeves says:

    Brisbane looking unstoppable at this stage. They’ve used their foreign signings wisely – I think MV have the wrong Costa Rican.

    Although MV were much improved against Welly. Nice to see Archie back and hopefully Danny Allsopp resumes his place alongside him soon.

  3. Makes for a big game this Friday night between Victory and Roar. Any bold predictions?

  4. Also, I expected NQ and Perth to be awful; how wrong! That was a terrific game to watch, unfortunately much of that due to some perplexing refereeing. Fowler still has some fantastic skill.
    Apart from Heart’s awful game, there were more good matches to reinforce that this season’s vintage is the best so far. Awaiting Tom’s review.

  5. Martin Reeves says:

    Crio – our best chance is a high scoring draw – I don’t think we can hold them out all night. May as well take it to them.

    2-2. Should be good viewing.

    And good to see Fowler turn his form around.

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