The festive season has come along thick and fast but the Hyundai A-League is just heating up with a host of matches set to lead football fans into the New Year.
It looms as a crucial period for Fantasy A-League managers with a massive 15 games to be played across 12 days, starting with a double header on Boxing Day.
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The upcoming football feast provides a massive opportunity to quickly rise up the Fantasy A-League rankings and gain those all-important bragging rights over your mates!
So if you’re in a form slump or need some advice with your selections, listen up! The Scout is back again to lend you a helping hand!
There were just the four games in Round 11 of the Hyundai A-League and it was upsets galore across the weekend with three of the four matches not going to script.
The Newcastle Jets provided arguably the shock of the season after Phil Stubbins’ men knocked off high-flying Adelaide United 2-1 to notch their first win of the 2014/15 campaign.
Josep Gombau’s men were clearly struggling with fatigue from their Westfield FFA Cup triumph just three days earlier so we’re expecting the league’s entertainers to bounce back this week!
A stoppage-time header from hulking midfielder Erik Paartalu handed Melbourne City FC a stunning 1-0 win over the previously unbeaten Melbourne Victory and provided sweet revenge for their 5-2 thrashing back in Round 3.
Surprise packets Wellington Phoenix continued their spectacular revival under Ernie Merrick with a hard-fought 2-0 win over Sydney FC, their third away win this season.
Nathan Burns was at his menacing best once again with a sublime brace against the Sky Blues to take his tally to 10 for the season and was rewarded with a spot in the Socceroos’ 23-man Asian Cup squad.
Perth Glory continued their hot start to the season with a comfortable 4-1 win over Central Coast Mariners and extended their lead at the summit to six points.
Youngster Chris Harold put in a sublime shift for Kenny Lowe’s men, netting a brace and laying on the assist for the other two goals.
THE SCOUTS XI
OUT > Milos Dimitrijevic IN > Marcelo Carrusca
OUT > Nigel Boogaard IN > Scott Jamieson
So who should you pick in your team? Here’s The Scout’s picks for round 12…
Andy Keogh ($422,000) – Along with Nathan Burns, Keogh is one of the most potent strikers in the Hyundai A-League at the moment. He scored his seventh goal of the season against the Mariners and picked up an assist to accrue an impressive 12 points for the round. Burns will miss two of Wellington’s next three matches and fantasy managers looking to fill his sizeable void can look no further than Keogh. MUST HAVE.
Dud of the week
Liam Reddy ($163,000) – It was a game to forget for the Mariners custodian with the usually consistent shot-stopper conceding four goals against the high-flying Perth Glory. Daniel De Silva received plenty of plaudits for his audacious volleyed goal but Reddy was caught napping by the Glory whiz-kid and should have done better. Chris Harold’s goal from a tight angle was classy but Reddy would be disappointed with his attempt upon reflection. The struggling Mariners are leaking goals at an alarming rate so it would be wise to trade in Reddy for a side with more resilience.
Andrew Hoole ($147,000) – The Jets winger has been in decent form for Phil Stubbins’ side but only he’ll know how he didn’t score against Adelaide United on Friday night. The 21-year-old looked odds on to head home from point blank range before guiding the ball straight into Eugene Galekovic. To make matters worse Hoole blocked Edson Montano’s goal-bound effort on the follow up to leave the home-side frustrated at Hunter Stadium.
Chris Harold ($255,000) – The young Glory striker has had to bide his time this season but exploded on Saturday night with a man of the match performance against Central Coast Mariners. The 22-year-old netted two goals and two assists to net a stunning 22 points for the round, a league-high. The pacey former Gold Coast United flyer is sure to rack up the game time in the coming weeks and could be a handy foil for your main man up front.
Pick of the week
Connor Chapman ($245,000) – The Melbourne City FC defender has hardly featured for John van’t Schip’s side this term after suffering glandular fever in pre-season. But the former Newcastle Jets stopper was immense in the Melbourne Derby and earned man of the match honours in just his second match for the season. The 20-year-old has unsurped Rob Wielaert in the heart of defence and looks set for an extended run in an ever improving City outfit. A handy pick up…