Preview: Perth Glory v Wellington Phoenix
The bottom two teams in the competition have shown a bit in recent weeks but losses in Round 9 have put them behind the eightball yet again.
Date: Sunday November 2 Kick-off: 5:00pm local (7:00 pm AEDT) Venue: Members Equity Stadium TV and Radio: Live and exclusive broadcast on FOX Sports 1 and on Sky Sport 2. Hyundai A-League club radio broadcast partner is 6PR (Perth) and Radio Network (Wellington) 1035AM. To purchase tickets visit www.ticketmaster.com.au
Head-to-head Four Hyundai A-League meetings: Perth - 1 win, Wellington - 3 wins
Previous meeting Perth 1, Wellington 0 Members Equity Stadium, Round 5, September 2008
Past Five Games Perth Glory: Round 4: Queensland Roar 3, Perth Glory 0, Members Equity Stadium Round 5: Perth Glory 1, Wellington Phoenix 0, Members Equity Stadium Round 6: Central Coast Mariners 4, Perth Glory 1, Bluetongue Central Coast Stadium Round 8: Perth Glory 2, Sydney FC 1, Members Equity Stadium Round 9: Adelaide Utd 2, Perth Glory 1, Hindmarsh Stadium
Wellington: Round 4: Wellington Phoenix 0, Central Coast Mariners 0, Westpac Stadium Round 5: Perth Glory 1, Wellington Phoenix 0, Members Equity Stadium Round 6: Wellington Phoenix 2, Sydney FC 1, Westpac Stadium Round 7: Newcastle Jets 2, Wellington Phoenix 2, EnergyAustralia Stadium Round 9: Wellington Phoenix 0, Queensland Roar 1, Westpac Stadium
Analysis The bottom two teams in the competition have shown a bit in recent weeks but losses in Round 9 have put them behind the eightball yet again.
The Glory may have been unfortunate to come away from Adelaide with a 2-1 loss but the result still stands and it puts some intense pressure on the club to win its next two fixtures at home against the Phoenix and Newcastle.
Both of those sides have come to Members Equity Stadium already this season but neither of them was able to conjure wins, giving the Glory some hope of claiming the maximum six points, starting with the Phoenix in Sunday's late kick-off.
The hosts will welcome Eugene Dadi back from injury while Nick Rizzo has been promoted to the side, with two to be omitted from coach Dave Mitchell's squad. But despite recovering from the slight groin strain he received in the warm-up ahead of the Sydney FC clash, Mitchell is no guarantee to start Dadi, with the coach more than likely sticking to Jamie Harnwell and Nikita Rukavytsya as his primary forward targets, with the big French Ivorian being used off the bench in the second half.
Phoenix coach Ricki Herbert has made one change, but it's a big one, opting to rest forward Adam Kwasnik and replacing him with teenager Costa Barbarouses. Apart from Kwasnik and the injured Vince Lia (knee-season), Herbert has a full squad to choose from, including former Glory youngster Leo Bertos.
When he came on for Kwasnik in the second half of last week's 1-0 loss to Queensland, Bertos' enthusiasm brought the Phoenix to life after a lacklustre first half, where they conceded one goal to the Roar. But, given the chance to equalise in the 89th minute, Bertos could only blast over the bar with the 'keeper to beat, and the Glory will be hoping for more of the same come Sunday.
Whether Bertos or Wellington's other forward target Shane Smeltz get many chances at testing Glory stopper Tando Velaphi will depend on Perth's defence. With Hayden Foxe and Nikolai Topor-Stanley teaming effectively in the centre, the defence is much less prone to the concentration fade-outs that saw it lose big time to Sydney and Central Coast.
Perth's attack also seems better organised than Wellington's and the club managed to beat the Phoenix with a host of injuries last time around. But having said that, Wellington's loss in Perth inspired it to several big results, including a win over Sydney FC and this match could go down to the wire once again.
Perth Glory Squad. 30.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 2.Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY, 4.Jamie COYNE (c), 5.Jamie HARNWELL, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Nick RIZZO, 9.Adrian TRINIDAD, 10.AMARAL, 11.Scott BULLOCH, 13.Nikita RUKAVYTSYA, 14.Eugene DADI, 16.Adriano PELLEGRINO, 17.James DOWNEY, 18.Hayden FOXE, 19.Naum SEKULOVSKI, 20.Frank JURIC (gk), 22.Wayne SRHOJ.
* two to be omitted.
In. 7.Nick RIZZO (promoted), 14.Eugene DADI (return from injury).
Unavailable. Josip MAGDIC (ankle - season), James ROBINSON (abdomen - 7 weeks), David TARKA (quad - 1 week).
Wellington Phoenix Squad. 1. Mark PASTON (gk), 3. Tony LOCHHEAD, 4. Jon McKAIN, 5. Karl DODD, 6. Tim BROWN, 7. Leo BERTOS, 8. Vaughan COVENY, 9.Shane SMELTZ, 10. Michael FERRANTE, 11. DANIEL, 18. Ben SIGMUND, 20. Glen MOSS (gk), 21. Leilei GAO, 22. Andrew DURANTE (captain), 23. Costa BARBAROUSES.
In. 23. Costa BARBAROUSES (promoted).
Out. 15. Adam KWASNIK (omitted).
Unavailable. 17. Vince LIA (knee - season).