Preview: Adelaide United v Melbourne Victory

Cheer United to Victory! Hindmarsh hosts its first game of the season, as Adelaide and Melbourne chase three crucial points. Be there!

Cheer United to Victory! Hindmarsh hosts its first game of the season, as Adelaide and Melbourne chase three crucial points. Be there!

Despite an opening weekend defeat to Travis Dodd's Perth Glory, United will go into their first home game of the Hyundai A-League 2011/12 season confident of good times ahead. And what better way to kick off the home campaign than with a match-up against the old enemy, Melbourne Victory? So, get yourself along to Hindmarsh and show your side that you are behind them all the way in their bid for silverware!

Despite succumbing to a second-half goal from Glory's Billy Mehmet, there are plenty of positives to take from Sunday's game at nib Stadium, most notably the second-half performance, where The Reds really put their hosts under some severe pressure for periods. And they did so without star signing Dario Vidosic, who has struggled with a knee injury since his arrival. The good news is that coach Rini Coolen is hopeful of having him available for some of Friday's clash. He is not fully match-fit, but you might see him making an impact from the bench.

Victory will head into this game hoping to go one better than in their opening fixture. While the performance was of a pleasingly high standard, they were unable to find the net. Indeed, they had goalkeeper Ante Covic to thank for keeping a clean sheet at the other end, in what was a much more thrilling match than the scoreline would suggest. The pick of Covic's saves was his penalty stop from Brett Emerton in the first half. If ever there was something that would gain him instant hero's status, it was that.

Despite the performance of their keeper, Victory certainly won't count themselves lucky to have escaped with a point. Despite not scoring, they created plenty of chances, and will be delighted with Harry Kewell's 90 minutes. Elsewhere, former Wellington Phoenix midfielder Marco Rojas was outstanding and left-back Fabio looked comfortable. The signs were certainly there to suggest that this Victory team will really be a force to be reckoned with as the players continue to gel. And, with Carlos Hernandez back from international duty, there are a few attacking options for boss Mehmet Durakovic to think about.

Of course, there is plenty of history between United and Victory. The visitors held a 10-match winning run over Adelaide, stretching over 38 months until The Reds smashed the Melbourne side at AAMI Park last season. The 4-1 drubbing included a brace from leading scorer Sergio Van Dijk and the a red card for Kevin Muscat.

Both these sides need a win to get their seasons up and running, so your support is absolutely vital. Get yourself along to Hindmarsh and get ready to create an intense atmosphere. Victory are always well represented wherever they play so, Red Army, you are going to have to be louder than ever if you want your side to overcome United's old adversaries. It's a Friday night showdown not to be missed!