4 key ins for this weekend’s Hyundai A-League action

It promises to be a huge weekend in the Hyundai A-League with some interesting match-ups which will have a bearing on the makeup of the top six.

It all kicks off on Friday night as the Reds and Melbourne City resume their rivalry, while Newcastle Jets begin life without Andrew Nabbout in Auckland against Phoenix.

And how will Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory go in their respective home matches just days after playing in the AFC Champions League.

Here’s four key ins ahead of the last four matches of Round 23.

Bart Schenkeveld (Melbourne City)

The big Dutchman has been a model of consistency this season and has been one of the leading defenders across the entire Hyundai A-League.

City certainly missed his presence in the Melbourne Derby defeat a fortnight ago and his return is timely with City coming off three straight defeats and in danger of dropping out of the top four.

Berisha and Schenkeveld
Bart Schenkeveld (City)

Ronald Vargas (Newcastle Jets)

What a huge boost to the Jets to see the Venezuelan playmaker back on the pitch following his long layoff from that horror injury suffered against Brisbane in Round 3.

With Andrew Nabbout moving to Japan and Roy O’Donovan suspended, the Jets will benefit from having his creative flair available again.

And if he strikes up a combination with fellow South American Pato Rodriguez, rival Wellington could be in for a long night in Auckland.

Ronny Vargas
Ronald Vargas (Jets)

Andrija Kaludjerovic (Wellington Phoenix)

The Serbian striker was a surprise omission from the Phoenix side that was trounced by the Wanderers last weekend but is back for the visit of Newcastle.

In a side that has struggled all season, Kaludjerovic certainly hasn’t let anyone down, in the top 10 for goal scoring with eight for the campaign.

He’ll hope the likes of Nathan Burns and Sarpreet Singh can provide the ammunition for him to get at a Newcastle defence without skipper Nigel Boogaard.

Andrija Kaluderovic
Andrija Kaludjerovic (Phoenix)

Corey Brown (Brisbane Roar)

The underrated left-back has endured an injury-plagued campaign but is set to return for the clash with champions Sydney FC at Allianz on Saturday night.

And his first task? Trying to put the shackles on impressive Pole Adrian Mierzejewski, who is likely to start on the right side of the Sky Blues attack.

With Roar needing a win to stay alive in the finals race, Brown will need to have a stormer to shackle the influence of Mierzejewski.

Corey Brown
Corey Brown (Roar)