With Brisbane now assured of their finals place – and close to securing the Premiers Plate – the race is hotting up for the last five spots in the top six.
With Brisbane now assured of their finals place - and close to securing the Premiers Plate - the race is hotting up for the last five spots in the top six.
Therefore, let's have a look at the run home for the remaining nine clubs and see who has the best chance of featuring in the finals.
Western Sydney Wanderers (2nd) - Points 34, Goal Difference (GD) +2 To play: Adelaide (home), Perth (home), Central Coast (away), Brisbane (home), Melbourne Heart (away)
Despite back-to-back losses in the A-League, the Wanderers are well-placed to make the play-offs. Tony Popovic's side only have to travel out of NSW on one occasion in the last five weeks which could be a big factor considering their hectic schedule with AFC Champions League commitments thrown in. The Wanderers still have the likes of Adelaide and Brisbane to play in the next month which won't be easy but they should pick up enough points to make the six - and an all-important top two spot.
Melbourne Victory (3rd) - Points 33, GD -4 To play: Perth (away), Brisbane (away), Sydney (home), Newcastle (away), Wellington (away)
If there's one side currently in the top six that looks a little vulnerable it's arguably the Victory. Not only do they have to juggle the extra matches and travel that comes with the ACL but they also have a horror fixture list domestically. The Victory have just one more home game in the final five rounds coupled with away trips to Perth, Wellington, Brisbane and the Central Coast to contend with. If they do manage to be there come finals time they will certainly have earned it.
Sydney FC (4th) - Points 31, GD 0 To play: Brisbane (home), Adelaide (away), Melbourne Victory (away), Wellington (home), Perth (home)
The Sky Blues picked up a valuable three points in last weekend's Sydney Derby, something they needed to do considering they have a tough three-game stretch approaching starting with the visit of the league leaders. But if they can emerge from that period without too much storm damage Sydney should make the cut. Coach Frank Farina will see back-to-back home games against Wellington and Perth to finish the regular season as fixtures they should win if they want the right to play in the finals.
Adelaide United (5th) - Points 30, GD +8 To play: Western Sydney (away), Sydney (home), Wellington (away), Melbourne Heart (home), Newcastle (away)
While they have three away matches in the last five, the Reds arguably have the best draw on the run home of any side currently in the top six. Adelaide play against the two Sydney sides in the next fortnight before taking on three teams currently outside the top six. If they can knock off Western Sydney on Saturday - or at least avoid defeat - the Reds could make a late charge for second spot and a week off in the opening round of the finals.
Central Coast Mariners (6th) - Points 30, GD -7 To play: Newcastle (home), Melbourne Heart (away), Western Sydney (home), Perth (away), Brisbane (away)
The Mariners should be on a high after a memorable ACL result over Sanfrecce Hiroshima but will need to shift their focus quickly to the domestic front. A local derby against the Jets on Saturday night is set to have a huge say on their finals hopes. Newcastle sit just a point behind their F3 rivals so Phil Moss' troops can ill-afford a loss. Three tough road trips makes it difficult to confidently say the Mariners will make the top six but they are defending champions and if there's one thing we've learned over the years it's that you should never write off this club. Their finals fate might all come down to their final round trip to Brisbane.
Newcastle Jets (7th) - Points 29, GD -4 To play: Central Coast (away), Wellington (home), Perth (away), Melbourne Victory (home), Adelaide (home)
Of all the teams currently outside the top six, the Jets appear to have the best chance of making the finals. They have to travel interstate just once in the last five games and seem to be hitting their straps at just the right time. Coach Clayton Zane has been quite vocal in his thoughts that the Jets believe they have a run home that will work in their favour. Let's see if he's right over the next month.
Wellington Phoenix (8th) - Points 27, GD -3 To play: Melbourne Heart (away), Newcastle (away), Adelaide (home), Sydney (away), Melbourne Victory (home)
The Phoenix are probably the hardest team to get a read on right now. If you look at their results in the last month they have conceded five goals on two different occasions yet came out and thrashed the Mariners 4-1 away from home. What does that mean? It's anyone's guess if they can make the six. While their away form has improved this season, three away games would suggest they could find it hard to get enough points to leapfrog a couple of clubs above them and make the finals. Working in their favour though is that they play all the sides they are battling with for a spot so it's very much in their own hands.
Melbourne Heart (9th) - Points 24, GD -3 To play: Wellington (home), Central Coast (home), Brisbane (away), Adelaide (away), Western Sydney (home)
The Heart were on track to complete 'mission impossible' up until last weekend's narrow 1-0 defeat to the Jets. The result snapped their seven-match unbeaten run and may have just burst the momentum they had built up to go all the way to the top six. The Heart will fancy their chances of getting maximum points at home in the next fortnight but have three tricky matches - including two tough away trips - to finish the campaign which could be one bridge too far for John van 't Schip's side. But you just never know.
Perth Glory (10th) - Points 22, GD -7 To play: Melbourne Victory (home), Western Sydney (away), Newcastle (home), Central Coast (home), Sydney (away)
The Glory have a fairly kind draw to finish the regular season but have the most work to do to make the top six. They will fancy their chances to win all their remaining home games, while a trip to Western Sydney, who will be playing their fourth game in 12 days, will also work in their favour but Perth-s current form hasn't been good enough to suggest they can suddenly go on a big winning streak. Best scenario for the Glory could be trying to get enough points to avoid the wooden spoon.