Opta reveals every club's best player from Round 26

Central Coast Mariners' inspirational skipper, Wellington Phoenix's flying Fijian and a Melbourne City rising star all feature among the best from Round 26 of the Hyundai A-League.

Who stood head and shoulders above the rest for your club?

Thanks to Opta data, let's take a look back at a thrilling Easter weekend and identify the best performers.

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Adelaide United – Michael Jakobsen

Adelaide United were at their resolute best in Good Friday’s 1-0 win over Melbourne Victory, and Jakobsen was central to keeping the reigning champions at bay.

The Danish defender won nine duels (the only defender to tally more was Perth Glory’s Shane Lowry with 10) and made 50 passes, along with an interception and a clearance.

Jakobsen's resilience helped Adelaide to a vital 1-0 win over Victory

Brisbane Roar – Zach Duncan

Despite suffering their worst home loss in Hyundai A-League history, Duncan showed that – with the young talent emerging in Queensland – there are rays of light glinting through the storm cloud that is Brisbane Roar's 2018/19 campaign. 

Duncan made two dribbles, scored a goal from his lone shot on target and created one scoring chance as the Roar fell to Newcastle Jets 6-1 on Saturday.

Duncan opened his Hyundai A-League account in Roar's 6-1 loss

Central Coast Mariners – Matt Simon

Caretaker coach Alen Stajcic hailed Central Coast’s 3-1 win over Western Sydney Wanderers on Saturday as their best performance of his short reign at the Gosford club.

Captain Matt Simon led the charge, winning 14 duels – more than any other player in Round 26 – as well as scoring twice and creating two chances.

Central Coast Mariners
Simon scored twice from dead-ball situations - a free-kick and penalty - to defeat a sorry Wanderers outfit on Saturday

Melbourne City – Riley McGree

Melbourne City’s talented midfielder has a habit of producing the spectacular, as he proved in his side’s 3-2 loss to Wellington Phoenix on Sunday.

McGree twice dragged Warren Joyce’s side level with excellent left-footed finishes, before Roy Krishna one-upped the 20-year-old in stoppage time.

McGree pulled City level twice in Sunday's defeat to Wellington

Melbourne Victory – Raul Baena

Melbourne Victory were unable to crack Adelaide United last Friday, but it was not for a lack of trying on Raul Baena’s account.

The Spanish midfielder kept things ticking over neatly for Kevin Muscat’s side with 49 passes and did not neglect his defensive duties either, making a joint team-high three interceptions and contesting eight duels.

Raul Baena and Scott Galloway
Melbourne Victory midfielder Raul Baena: loves a duel

Newcastle Jets - Joey Champness

How different could Newcastle Jets’ season have been had Champness been fit and available for the majority of it?

In Newcastle’s 6-1 win over Brisbane Roar, Champness demonstrated why he is one of the hottest young properties in the Hyundai A-League.

The attacker scored a double, registered an assist and also created two scoring chances for his teammates.

Joey Champness
Rising star: Newcastle Jets' attacker Joey Champness (right)

Perth Glory – Tomi Mrcela

Tony Popovic is mulling over options for Perth Glory’s Finals Series assault, and Mrcela presented the Perth boss with a compelling case for selection despite his side losing 1-0 to Sydney FC last Thursday.

The defender made a round-high 95 passes, with a 95% pass accuracy, made five interceptions and four clearances.

Mrcela
Perth Glory defender Tomi Mrcela

Sydney FC – Adam Le Fondre

It will not go down as the greatest goal he has scored on Australian soil, but how important will Le Fondre’s match-winner against Perth prove to be in the context of Sydney FC’s season?

As well as providing the perfect statement of intent for Steve Corica’s side ahead of the Finals Series, Le Fondre turned in a complete centre forward performance to defeat the premiers, finishing with a 92% passing accuracy, and two goal scoring chances created.

Le Fondre scored his 16th goal of the campaign against Perth in Round 26

Wellington Phoenix – Roy Krishna

There is just no stopping Roy Krishna when the Fijian is in this kind of form.

Wellington Phoenix’s talisman forward netted a hat-trick to help his side edge Melbourne City 3-2 on Sunday, a match that saw the irrepressible Krishna also create two scoring chances and contest 19 duels.

Hat-trick hero: Wellington Phoenix striker Roy Krishna

Western Sydney Wanderers – Mitchell Duke

Mitchell Duke has not been in Western Sydney long but he has already made himself integral to Markus Babbel’s plans for the Wanderers next season.

On his return to former employers Central Coast Mariners, Duke created two scoring chances, attempted two shots, contested 15 duels and made four dribbles.

Mitch Duke was one of the biggest threats to Mariners goalkeeper Adam Pearce's goal on Saturday