Official FFA Preview: Sydney FC v Newcastle Jets
Six-pointer! Sydney Football Stadium hosts its last game for over three weeks
Sydney FC v Newcastle Jets Sunday 7th November 5:00pm
Six-pointer! Sydney Football Stadium hosts its last game for over three weeks as two big NSW rivals clash at the foot of the table.
Reasons for Sky Blue fans to be at Sydney Football Stadium on Sunday: 1. Sydney go into the game having taken four points from a possible six and will be looking at a game against fellow strugglers Newcastle as a chance to make it seven from a possible nine. 2. Derby games with local rivals Newcastle Jets are always tasty affairs. 3. This particular derby is a massive six-pointer at the foot of the table.
Still not convinced? Well, this match will also be the last chance to see Vitezslav Lavicka-s men in action at Sydney Football Stadium until December 1st, as, after this game, no football will be played at the venue over a 22-day period while the pitch is being returfed.
The work had been planned for early October but was then postponed when the stadium was chosen to host the international friendly between Australia and Paraguay. The Perth game in a couple of weeks will therefore take place in Parramatta.
So, anyone with Sky Blue in their veins should get down to Sydney Football Stadium for this derby clash and get ready to cheer the Champions on to their first home win of the season. Following a hard-earned 1-1 draw against Brisbane Roar last Saturday, Sydney will be looking to go one better against Jets. There were plenty of positives to come from the Roar game for Sydney.
The Cove will surely have been impressed by the determination their players showed to come from behind to steal a draw from a team that, at one stage, looked like they might run away with it. Sydney are more used to surrendering their lead this season than pegging back a deficit, so the character shown by the men in Sky Blue epitomised the kind of spirit that will be needed if they are to lift themselves up the ladder.
Neat passing football is one thing, but sometimes you also have to roll your sleeves up and be prepared to sweat blood for the cause. As Brisbane dominated for periods and pushed especially hard for winner late on, that is exactly what Sydney did.
Newcastle, on the other hand, went down without much of a fight to Melbourne Heart last week. Having been the side that gifted them their first point and first goal in the Hyundai A-League, they also became the first team to lose at home to the newcomers.
It was a fitting end to a frustrating week for Jets which saw one home game postponed and the other moved away from EnergyAustralia Stadium. Still, the 2-0 defeat, while massively disappointing, shouldn-t detract from the positives that are coming out of Newcastle at the moment.
There is a great sense of community about the place and there is sure to be a big turnout from their Squadron for the short trip to Sydney Football Stadium. While Francis Jeffers is unlikely to be cleared in time to feature, the arrival of the 29-year-old on a 10-week guest stint further illustrates Newcastle-s increasing ambition.
Two players for whom Sunday is a landmark day are Mark Bridge, who turns 25, and Jets midfielder Kasey Wehrman, who is set to make his 100th Australian national league appearance. Before returning to Australia this season after spending several years in Norway, Wehrman played for Brisbane Strikers and Perth Glory in the old National Soccer League.
The Cove will certainly be up for revenge this time round. In the corresponding fixture last season, despite being at the wrong end of the ladder, the Jets strolled to victory. By the time Alex Brosque scored for the home side, the sizeable Jets following was already basking in the glory of a 3-0 lead thanks in no small part to a brace from Michael Bridges.
Not only was this a rare home blip for the Champions last season, but an even rarer loss to their local rivals. Of the last 12 meetings, Sydney have won nine. With this game being a huge six-pointer, the home side will be hoping more so than ever that their usually dominance over Jets continues. A win would finally lift Sydney off the foot of the ladder. And what a relief that would be!
This already fierce local rivalry is sure to be fuelled by the fact that there are scores to be settled, bragging rights to be gained and, most importantly, points to be won. So be part of the drama and use your vocal chords to make an impact on the outcome.
The Cove-s noisy encouragement when the team fell behind to Brisbane really made a difference. Now it-s time to take it up a notch. The Jets fans are sure to be in good voice too, so a fantastic atmosphere beckons. Who will be singing at the final whistle?