Melbourne Victory look in ominous touch ahead of a clash against original rivals Adelaide United at Marvel Stadium on Saturday night.
Victory made it four wins on the trot with a clinical 4-0 thrashing of Western Sydney Wanderers in Round 6, with Keisuke Honda once again the star of the show.
The Japanese import was joined on the scoresheet by Raul Baena, Kosta Barbarouses and Terry Antonis as Victory kept the pressure on Hyundai A-League pacesetters Perth Glory.
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Adelaide are in good form themselves, sitting fourth - two places below Victory - after a 2-1 win over Brisbane Roar last time out.
And while Adelaide are sure to try and shut down the space that the likes of Honda, Barbarouses and Ola Toivonen like to roam in, they will also offer a significant threat of their own.
That will come via Craig Goodwin and Ben Halloran, with their pace and ability on the break enough to cause problems for any side.
This clash is the first between the two teams since Victory knocked United out of the 2017/18 Finals Series - a 2-1 win secured thanks to Besart Berisha’s 89th-minute goal.
But four of the last eight meetings between the two sides have been won by the away side, a statistic sure to fill United with confidence.
Victory will be boosted by the return of both Georg Neidermeier and James Troisi from injury and illness respectively.
Key Opta Stats
- Melbourne Victory have lost just twice in their last 16 Hyundai A-League fixtures against Adelaide United (W9, D5).
- Adelaide United have won their last two games on the bounce; the last time they won more was a five-game stretch which culminated in their being crowned Champions for the 2015/16 campaign.
- Victory have registered 41 shots on target this Hyundai A-League season, 12 more than any other team in the competition.
Ins and Outs
Melbourne Victory squad: 1.Matt ACTON (gk), 2.Storm ROUX, 3.Corey BROWN, 4.Keisuke HONDA, 5.Georg NIEDERMEIER, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 8.Terry ANTONIS, 9.Kosta BARBAROUSES, 10.James TROISI, 11.Ola TOIVONEN, 13.Birkan KIRDAR, 14.Thomas DENG, 15.Raul BAENA, 16.Josh HOPE, 19.Rahmat AKBARI, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 21.Carl VALERI (c), 26.Nicholas SETTE
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 5.Georg NIEDERMEIER (return from injury), 10.James TROISI (return from injury), 21.Nicholas SETTE (promoted)
Outs: 22.Nick ANSELL (shoulder - TBC)
Unavailable: Kenny ATHIU (hamstring – TBC), Jai Ingham (quad – TBC)
Adelaide United Squad: 1.Daniel MARGUŠ (gk), 2.Michael MARRONE, 3.Scott GALLOWAY, 4.Ryan STRAIN, 6.Vince LIA, 7.Ryan KITTO, 8.Isaías SÁNCHEZ (c), 10.Ken ILSØ, 11.Craig GOODWIN, 16.Nathan KONSTANDOPOULOS, 17.Nikola MILEUSNIĆ, 20.Paul IZZO (gk), 22.Michael JAKOBSEN, 23.Jordan ELSEY, 26.Ben HALLORAN, 27.Louis D’ARRIGO, 32.Carlo ARMIENTO, 33.Apostolos STAMATELOPOULOS
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 1.Daniel MARGUŠ (gk) (promoted), 22.Michael JAKOBSEN (returns from injury), 27.Louis D’ARRIGO (promoted), 32.Carlo ARMIENTO (promoted)
Outs: 5.Taylor REGAN (suspended - 1 week), 30.Isaac RICHARDS (not selected)
Unavailable: 9.Baba DIAWARA (knee), 14.George BLACKWOOD (collar bone), 18.Lachlan BROOK (knee) 31.Mirko BOLAND (hamstring)
How to watch
Find out whether Victory’s winning run will continue LIVE and FREE on 10 Boss or tenplay, with kick off at 7.50pm (AEDT). You can also watch it on FOX SPORTS 505 or stream it live on the MyFootball Live App.
Be there for the latest edition of the Original Rivalry. Get your ticket here.