Preview: Gold Coast United v Newcastle Jets FREE ENTRY


Gold Coast United v Newcastle Jets Saturday 22nd January 8:15pm FREE ENTRY THIS SATURDAY! United are throwing their doors open for this crucial clash to aid the state-s flood relief efforts.

Queensland is going through unbelievably tough times at the moment, so the state needs everyone to chip in and do their bit. With the country rallying in support, Hyundai A-League clubs are, of course, playing their part, and none more so than Queensland-s own Gold Coast United, whose owner Clive Palmer is throwing open the gates of Skilled Park for this huge match-up with Newcastle Jets.

In exchange for a Saturday night of free Hyundai A-League drama, fans are simply being asked to make donations to assist victims of Queensland's flood crisis. Surely it-s a no-brainer for football lovers in the Gold Coast this weekend? You get free admission to an absolutely massive game for United as they jostle for position in the build up to the Grand Finals and, at the same time, you can give a few bucks to those who really, really need it.

If, for some reason, you are still to be convinced, then you only need to look back at the last match in front of The Beach to get an idea of the kind of entertainment that is set to be on offer this Saturday night. After a shaky spell in recent weeks, United rebounded in style with a 4-0 win over the North Queensland Fury.

The match hailed the return of boomerang centre-forward Shane Smeltz - and what a return it was! Not only did the Kiwi help set up two goals, he got on the scoresheet himself to make it a truly triumphant homecoming. After four straight defeats, the win put United right back in the mix for a top two spot.

Amazingly, there are yet more reasons why heading to Skilled Park is a must this Saturday night. With Smeltz back amongst it, Miron Bleiberg has further bolstered his squad in preparation for the big push for silverware. Not only has a deal finally been reached with German midfielder Peter Perchtold, but there is another new face ready to impress, with Korean Sungkil Kim brought in as an injury replacement for Robson. Both are set to make their home debuts this weekend, so get along and give them a warm welcome.

It-s hard to predict which way this one is going to go, especially if you are relying on this season-s head-to-heads for an indication. Of the two times that the sides have taken each other on, they have each won once. In September it took a last-minute piece of magic from the most unlikely source to win the game for United at Skilled Park.

Hardly known for his goal-scoring prowess, it was John Curtis that produced a 25-yard thunderbolt that sent the Beach wild - it was the first time the Gold Coast had scored at home in 584 long minutes! Since then though, Jets have upped their game, something that was illustrated when the sides met again in New South Wales. Just over a month ago, Newcastle overturned the Gold Coast 2-0 in what was their second win with just 10 men in a week.

Over 8,000 fans saw Newcastle dominate their stubborn opponents, and eventually grab an opener through Ali Abbas in the 77th minute. Even being reduced to ten men didn-t knock the home side from their stride, and talismanic front-man Sasho Petrovski sent the big crowd crazy when he settled it in the 81st minute. It was a win that equalled Newcastle-s best run of games without a loss in the Hyundai A-League and set them up for an attack on their the top six that seemed so unlikely as they struggled to keep their heads above water in the early stages of the campaign.

However, if they want to maintain their top six push, they-ll need to quickly bounce back from a disappointing loss last weekend. Minus the departed Ljubo Milicevic and with an injury list as long as your arm, they went down 2-0 at home to an impressive Central Coast Mariners side in the F3 derby. With skipper Kasey Wehrman, midfielder Ruben Zadkovich and veteran forward Sasho Petrovski making the medical room even busier, coach Branko Culina will certainly have some head-scratching to do when trying to select a starting eleven for this tough game.

Support a worthy cause and get to see some top draw Hyundai A-League action all at the same time by heading down to The Beach and getting behind United-s push for silverware. Let-s make it a huge crowd at Skilled Park on Saturday night and show plenty of solidarity to our Queensland neighbours. This one is sure to be a cracker. Don-t miss out!

GOLD Coast United players and staff are urging all spectators heading to this Saturday-s FREE home fixture at Skilled Park to donate any unused toys to the young families devastated by the recent Queensland floods.

While many families embark on the long journey to recovery, United are providing an easy outlet for Queenslanders to continue their support by generously giving small items as a contribution to the flood relief at this weekend-s match against the Newcastle Jets.