Team of the Week, presented by Bunnings Warehouse - Matchweek 15
Matchweek 15 wrapped up on Wednesday, April 7 after a six-day, nine-game football feast which began and concluded with Central Coast Mariners on top of the pile.
Sydney FC snuck into the top four after two Matchweek 15 wins over Melbourne Victory and Perth Glory. Melbourne City had the chance to overthrow the Mariners at the top but a 2-1 loss to Western United stopped Patrick Kisnorbo's side in their tracks. City did, however, respond well to defeat by edging Wellington Phoenix 3-2 on Monday night.
Macarthur FC dealt Perth the first of their two defeats for the Matchweek to go three games unbeaten - the Bulls now occupy third spot on the table.
Western Sydney Wanderers drew twice and Adelaide United lost 2-1 to the Mariners, allowing Western United to close in on the two top-six sides. The Green and Black beat both City and Newcastle Jets to move four points behind Western Sydney, having played three games less.
Read on to see who made our 4-3-3 formation in the Team of the Week for Matchweek 15, presented by Bunnings Warehouse.
MW15 REPORT: Sydney FC 1-0 Perth Glory
WESTFIELD W-LEAGUE: Garriock - Victory have the X factor in attack to beat Sky Blues to Championship
Daniel Margush - Western Sydney Wanderers
Margush was kept incredibly busy in goal throughout his side's two draws in Matchweek 15.
The Wanderers custodian made seven saves from eight shots faced in a 1-1 draw with Brisbane Roar, denying Joey Champness, Golgol Mebrahtu, Dylan Wenzel-Halls and Scott McDonald with a string of excellent stops.
Margush conceded twice to Central Coast - once from the penalty spot - but made a further three saves against the league-leaders at Bankwest Stadium.
MW15 REPORT: Brisbane Roar 1-1 Western Sydney Wanderers
Thomas Aquilina - Western Sydney Wanderers
Aquilina impressed down the right flank returning to Western Sydney's starting lineup for both of his side's Matchweek 15 fixtures - most notably in a 2-2 draw with Central Coast Mariners.
Aquilina created three chances on the night, including an assist to Bruce Kamau's equalising goal to make it 1-1 in the second half. But before he helped his team draw level, Aquilina prevented the Wanderers from going two goals down with a double block on the goal line to keep two of Jack Clisby's shots from piercing the back of the net.
Ruon Tongyik - Central Coast Mariners
The impressive form of Central Coast's imposing central defender rolled on throughout Matchweek 15. The league-leaders beat Adelaide United on Thursday, April 1, when Tongyik won six of ten duels, made three interceptions and four clearances.
Against the Wanderers Tongyik engaged in a hard-fought battle with Mitch Duke, passing 73 times at 87.7% accuracy, winning seven of 11 duels and clearing three times.
Tomislav Uskok - Western United
In two important Western United wins in Matchweek 15, Uskok proved his ability to take command of a defensive line and repel wave after wave of offensive pressure.
The Green and Black snapped Melbourne City's winning run with a 2-1 win, in which Uskok made five clearances and enjoyed a 100% tackle success rate. In his side's 1-0 win over Newcastle Jets later in the Matchweek Uskok cleared 11 times, winning eight of his 15 duels and helping to secure a clean sheet.
Corey Brown - Brisbane Roar
Brown put his creative spark on show in Brisbane Roar's 1-1 draw with Western Sydney on Saturday, April 3.
The left-back created six chances and played 14 crosses into dangerous areas. Brown also passed 50 times at 80% accuracy and won six of his nine attempted duels.
MW15 REPORT: Western Sydney Wanderers 2-2 Central Coast Mariners
MW15 REPORT: Wellington Phoenix 2-3 Melbourne City
Connor Metcalfe - Melbourne City
City's emerging central midfielder was imperious in a 3-2 win over Wellington Phoenix in Matchweek 15.
The 21-year-old's outstanding performance produced six created chances and two assists in attack, a 91.1% accuracy from 56 passes, two clearances and an interception.
Finding Jamie Maclaren on the left flank with a penetrating through ball after breaking through Wellington's chasing midfielders was the standout moment of his 90-minute shift.
Gianni Stensness - Central Coast
The importance of Gianni Stensness to Central Coast's success cannot be understated, and the midfielder's two performances throughout Matchweek 15 highlighted exactly what he brings to his side week in, week out.
In a 2-1 win over the Reds, Stensness enjoed a 100% success rate in both duels and tackles, passing 40 times at 80% accuracy. Against the Wanderers Stensness made two interceptions, one clearance and won four of seven duels, highlighting his performance with a committed sliding block on a Duke shot from close-range with the goal virtually at his mercy.
Markel Susaeta - Macarthur FC
Macarthur's star worked in tandem with Spanish compatriot Beñat Etxebarria to devastating effect in a 2-0 win over Perth Glory.
The pair toyed with Perth at times, displaying intricate passing in creative attacking moves to create space where no other player could envisage any room to work. Susaeta was involved in the move for the opening goal, before winning the penalty for his side which sealed the 2-0 scoreline. He created five chances and passed 69 times at an accuracy of 92.8% .
MW15 REPORT: Macarthur FC 2-0 Perth Glory
REACTION: Susaeta, Beñat showing Genreau the way in Macarthur midfield
Bruce Kamau - Western Sydney Wanderers
With his team a goal down against the Mariners and in desperate need of attacking spark, Kamau emerged from the bench in the second half to do score a quick-fire brace to put the Wanderers in sight of all three points, before a late Oliver Bozanic goal levelled the scores once more.
Kamau needed less than half an hour to leave his mark on the contest. As the likes of Bernie Ibini, Duke and Nicolai Müller failed on many occasions to convert their chances from the start, Kamau entered the fray to show them how it's done - and did so with two goals scored in a four-minute spell.
Lachlan Wales – Western United
After a barren start to his life in Green and Black, Wales got off the mark with a pair of goals in Matchweek 15.
A goal in both of his side's games helped Western United beat both Melbourne City and the Jets to jump up the table to within touching distance of the top six.
Wales scored the winning goal in Newcastle after drawing his side level at 1-1 with City on Thursday night and assisting Besart Berisha's winner just five minutes later.
Kosta Barbarouses - Sydney FC
Barbarouses was the third of the front-men in the Team of the Week to score twice in Matchweek 15, netting in Sydney FC's fixtures against Melbourne Victory and Perth Glory.
The two goals came in similar circumstances, with shots from the right side of the box hitting the back of the net from a slight angle.
The New Zealand international sparked his excellent performance against Victory with an assist for Bobô's opening goal before getting on the scoresheet himself. Barbarouses netted the only goal in Sydney's 1-0 win over Perth as his side won two out of two in Matchweek 15.
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