The Big Five Answers | round 25

The Jets got some divine intervention eventually, Heart's heart went missing, Sydney learnt their lesson and the Mariners are relying on maths.

Adelaide United v Newcastle Jets: Can the Jets save their season? We said the Jets would need some divine intervention; they didn-t get it in Adelaide, thanks to some Marcelo Carrusca brilliance and some questionable officiating - but Gary van Egmond might just take Brisbane's loss to Central Coast as a sign.

Twice the Jets found the net in the first 45 minutes only to see their goals disallowed; once for Adam Taggart supposedly interfering with Eugene Galekovic's movement, the other when Taggart himself was the victim of a tight offside call.

Thirty one points with every other contender holding a game in hand won't see them make the finals, unless they can really hammer the Wanderers in the last round… Stranger things have happened.

United gave what many expected, a spirited effort and were also let down by the “men in blue” as Ruben Zadkovich called the match officials post-game.

They do have an upside though; Dario Vidosic, Iain Ramsay and Fabio Ferreira all looked to be back to their best, as did Marcelo Carrusca, but a groin injury struck the Argentine down in the dying stages and they need him badly if they are going to truly contend for the title.

Melbourne Heart v Western Sydney Wanderers: have the Heart got some heart? For a little while there, you thought it just might happen. After some poor defending game the Wanderers the lead, Golgol Mebrahtu put Melbourne back in it with an absolute rocket. But the inspiration it provided for John Aloisi-s men didn-t run past half-time and in the second half they paid the price.

There was plenty of desire from the home team, they simply lacked the organisation, tactical discipline and the sheer confidence Western Sydney have after their record-breaking winning run.

John Aloisi has only had his team able to perform at that level in all-too-brief moments throughout the season. Even home advantage couldn-t help them this time.

But the visitors showed exactly why they-ve got one hand on the Premier-s Plate; even in Heart better passages of play did they look remotely hreatened. Tony Popovic has built a champion team and what-s more, they-re playing like they know it.

Sydney FC v Melbourne Victory: have Sydney learnt their lesson? You have to admit it, they got it alright. They figured out that they had to match Victory for pressure and intensity, that they had to challenge for every ball and maintain their structure and discipline.

This was the Big Blue at its best - literally end-to-end stuff, it was like a Wimbledon final. Victory set the tone with their explosive beginning to go in front, and Sydney had no chance but to throw themselves at their great rivals. They could afford to lose and in in this cup-tie atmosphere neither side gave an inch.

Victory were the cleaner of the two, the more clinical; Sydney were more of a physical force, aiming to break through the Melbourne defence by sheer determination. It wasn-t the sort of performance they should aim for every week - passion will only get you so far - but it was enough to earn a point in one of the best games of the season.

Central Coast Mariners v Brisbane Roar: Is the dream over for the Mariners? Sports journos generally don-t do maths very well, which is why we like to play down any team with a “mathematical chance” of winning. We don-t trust the numbers.

Graham Arnold is enough of a realist to know that it would take a colossal collapse from Western Sydney for the Mariners to retain the premiership, but Central Coast did enough against Brisbane to show that they-re not about to just hand the big plate over early.

Even after a long, unsuccessful midweek trip to Japan, the Mariners had too much for the Roar. They were just too organised and probably could have won by a bigger margin had Brisbane lost focus and not kept so many men behind the ball when it mattered.

Despite the loss it was another positive performance for Brisbane. They don-t have the swagger of old but they do seem to have at least recovered their composure. It will be interesting to see if Mike Mulvey can inject a bit more zing to their play during the long off-season. But with two homes games to come, this one might not be over yet.

Perth Glory v Wellington Phoenix: can Perth do the impossible? We questioned Perth intensity at the end last week - and they didn-t deliver, if you know what we mean. You wouldn-t have thought a place in the top six was up for grabs the way they went about their business.

Wellington played like they didn-t have anything to worry about - which they don-t - the problem was, Perth appeared to be the same. Maybe it was the stifling conditions but they just didn-t show enough energy and desire.

Even Paul Ifill and Stein Husyegems-s goals didn-t wake them from their slumber; Ryo Nagai-s battling header only got a brief reaction.

Perth should be frustrated - they blew a big opportunity to get salvage something from this season - but the nature of the finals system and the sheer inconsistency of all the other teams means, somehow, they-re still in with that mathematical chance. Away to Victory, at home to Adelaide - what can Glory pull out of the bag?