Two squads bolstered by returning stars and desperate for three points meet in the WA capital on Saturday night.
Saturday, 10 December 2016
Perth Glory v Newcastle Jets
nib Stadium, Perth
Kick-Off: 7:00PM (Local) (10:00PM (AEDT))
Referee: Daniel Elder
Assistant Referee 1: Matthew Cream
Assistant Referee 2: Paul Cetrangolo
Fourth Official: Adam Fielding
TV Broadcast: Live coverage on Fox Sports 505 from 10.00pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 4 (New Zealand)
Radio Broadcast: 720 ABC Perth, 1233 ABC Newcastle, ABC Local Radio WA, Grandstand Digital, Online & via the ABC Radio Mobile App – A-league Live, EON Sports Radio (eonsportsradio.com)
Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #PERvNEW
To purchase tickets visit www.aleague.com.au
Perth Glory squad: 3.Marc WARREN, 4.Shane LOWRY, 5.Rhys WILLIAMS, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 8.Rostyn GRIFFITHS (c), 9.Andy KEOGH, 10.Nebojsa MARINKOVIC, 13.Nicholas FEELY (gk), 14.Chris HAROLD, 15.Brandon WILSON, 16.Joe MILLS, 18.Mitch OXBORROW, 19.Josh RISDON, 21.Jamal REINERS, 22.Adam TAGGART, 23.Kosta PETRATOS, 24.Milan SMILJANIC, 33.Liam REDDY (gk)
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 5.Rhys WILLIAMS (returns from suspension), 19.Josh RISDON (returns from injury)
Unavailable: 2.Alex GRANT (hamstring – 1 week) 7.Joel CHIANESE (groin – 1 week), 17.Diego CASTRO (hamstring – 4 weeks)
Newcastle Jets squad: 2.Daniel MULLEN, 3.Jason HOFFMAN, 4.Nigel BOOGAARD (c), 6.Steven UGARKOVIC, 7.Andrew HOOLE, 8.Mateo POLJAK, 10.Wayne BROWN, 11.Labinot HALITI, 13.Ivan VUJICA, 15.Andrew NABBOUT, 16.Nicholas COWBURN, 18.MA Leilei, 20.Jack DUNCAN (gk), 23.Devante CLUT, 24.Kristian BRYMORA, 28.John KOUTROUMBIS, 30.Pierce CLARK (gk)
**one to be omitted**
Ins: 2.Daniel MULLEN (returns from injury), 4.Nigel BOOGAARD (returns from injury), 15.Andrew NABBOUT (returns from injury), 24.Kristian BRYMORA (promoted)
Outs: 5.Ben KANTAROVSKI (knee – indefinite), 12.Andy BRENNAN (omitted), 26.Iain FYFE (injury replacement contract complete)
Unavailable: 1.Ben KENNEDY (gk) (achilles – season), 9.Aleksandr KOKKO (jaw – 2 weeks), 19.Morten NORDSTRAND (hip flexor – 1 week), 23.Daniel ALESSI (knee – season), 22.Lachlan JACKSON (ankle – 1-2 weeks)
The Glory and Jets have just one win between them in the last month and will be desperate to revive their campaigns when they meet for the first time this season.
Injuries have certainly played their part with both clubs - the Jets in particular - bedevilled by a frustratingly long injury list.
The visitors have central defensive pairing skipper Nigel Boogaard and Daniel Mullen back in their ranks (though there are doubts on whether their captain will start) while Andrew Nabbout will add some much needed impetus to their attack.
And Glory’s Caltex Socceroo defender Josh Risdon has been named sooner than expected (after a quad injury) while classy former Socceroo Rhys Williams is back from suspension.
Kenny Lowe’s side toiled hard to earn a point against Victory last weekend but there’s no doubt they’ll go into this clash as favourites against a struggling Jets.
And the home side go into this clash boasting a formidable record at nib Stadium – unbeaten in ten (W7, D3) and averaging three goals a match across this run.
Mark Jones’ Jets on the other hand battled to keep league leaders Sydney FC at bay for over an hour but were eventually overrun in the final 30 minutes last week as they sit in ninth heading into Round 10.
And Newcastle will also have to defy an abysmal losing streak against Glory and the fact their only win in the West remains their first ever encounter way back in November 2005.
ROUTE TO GOAL
For a side that possesses such an array of attacking talent Glory have been reliant on main man Andy Keogh when it comes to finding the back of the net in recent weeks.
The Irishman has four of his side’s last six goals, taking his season tally to seven and level with Bruno Fornaroli.
The home side will again be without marquee Diego Castro, but there are still plenty of weapons with Harold, Taggart and their Irish talisman on the park.
Harold will be eager to open his goal account for the season, while Adam Taggart says he’s ready to be unleashed against his former club having not started since Round 1.
Injuries to key defenders haven’t been the only Achilles heel for Newcastle this season with their luckless attack averaging just a goal a game.
In worrying signs they’ve failed to score in their last two matches and didn’t muster a shot on target at home against the Sky Blues last weekend.
With that in mind, the addition of livewire Andrew Nabbout is a huge boost, but whether or not he’ll be fit enough to make a significant impact remains to be seen.
The absence of Aleksandr Kokko and Morten Nordstrand should see Labinot Haliti again lead the line but the visitors will have to defy history if they are to bring home three precious points from Perth.
WHO’S BEEN IN THE SPOTLIGHT THIS WEEK?
Adam Taggart. The former Hyundai A-League Golden Boot winner will come up against the club where he had so much success three seasons ago and he’s itching to make just his second start of the campaign.
FORM LINES (last five games)
Perth Glory: DLWLD
Newcastle Jets: LLDLL
Perth Glory 3-0 Newcastle Jets