Sydney FC v Melbourne Victory

Sunday May 7, 5:00pm AEST

Match Overview

Sydney cruised past Perth in the first Semi Final winning 3-0, that two goals were awarded via the VAR, both correct decisions in my opinion, shouldn’t mask their superiority. Perth simply couldn’t build any pressure, unable to control possession nor initiate many aggressive counter attacks to trouble the Sydney defence. In fairness to Perth the slowness of the pitch made their counter attacking style impossible.

Sydney have a fully fit squad to choose from and in the three meetings with the Victory this season they have been able to field near enough to the same starting 11 which will start on Sunday. Importantly those three matches have resulted in three wins.

Melbourne Victory came out all guns blazing as is their general style at home. They could have been a couple up early but as has been symptomatic of their last six or eight matches they failed to convert their dominance into clear cut meaningful chances and the couple they did were squandered. Like Sydney they also have basically a fully fit squad. They haven’t quite had the luxury of facing Sydney with their best 11 but near enough to. They will do on Sunday.

As has been widely publicised the pitch is going to be of very low quality. This will hamper both teams, but likely the Victory a little more as they look for quick transition to their speedy wingers.

Key Statistics

 Stats per match (rank)Sydney  Victory  
Rd 19-27SeasonHd to HdRd 19-27SeasonHd to Hd
DefensiveGoals Conceded0.4 (1)0.4 (1)0.70.8 (2)1.15 (2)1.7
Shots Faced2.9 (1)3.2 (1)3.75 (5)4.7 (5)5.3
Clean Sheets (total)5 (1)16 (1)14 (2)8 (2)0
GC per SF0.15 (1)0.14 (1)0.180.15 (2)0.25 (2)0.31
OffensiveGF1.9 (5)2 (1)1.71.1 (7)1.8 (3)0.7
Shots On*5.4 (3)5.5 (1)5.33.4 (9)4 (7)3.7
S/On Conversion % *0.29 (7)0.33 (3)0.310.32 (5)0.39 (1)0.18

 Statistics Comment

Above I have broken the usual key statistical markers into three groups. Their overall season figures (27 matches), the final third of the season (nine matches) and their head to head matches (three matches).

Sydney have been very consistent across all the periods, their slightly lower than expected offensive rankings over the final third of the season a product of some crazily high scoring matches of which they were no part (Perth 5-4 v City for example).

Victory have struggled to create and finish in the last third of the season. They did as much again in the Semi Final last week bar the opening exchanges.

Sydney have won all third matches against the Victory this season 2-1 (SFS), 2-1 (Etihad) 1-0 (SFS). Interestingly Victory have lead in both those 2-1 losses. Sydney have won the second halves 2-0, 1-0 and 1-0.

The respective teams records against the top-6 this season are as follows (not including last weeks Semi final):

TeamOverall (W-D-L)Home/Away (W-D-L)


In matches such as Grand Finals I like to use history as an indicator of the future, of course history is ignorant of the current teams, some interesting pointers:

  • In nine A-League Grand Finals with a designated home team, the home team has won 6 and there has been three draws in 90 mins. Of the three draws the home team won once on penalties, once in extra time and the away team won once on penalties (see next stat).
  • In all 11 A-League grand finals the lower ranked team has only won twice, both in 90 mins and both were the matches at neutral venues. Of note the only away team to lift the cup was Sydney FC on penalties when they were the higher ranked team.
  • In 11 A-League Grand Finals eight of 11 have been 0-0 at half time with the time of first goal median at 54.5 minutes and the median time of last goal 83.5 minutes
  • This season Sydney finished (Minor Premiers) 17 points clear of Victory (runners-up). The median variance over the first 11 seasons (with a mix of number of matches) is three points with a maximum variance of 12 points (in a season with only 21 matches).


Betting Strategy

You can never write off a team with as many good players as the Victory, or so they say. I just think Sydney have too much in this one albeit in a likely tight encounter.

 BACK – Sydney to win at 1.7+ for 4 units

 BACK –  0-0 at half-time for 1 unit at 2.8+

 BACK –  Draw/Sydney half full double for 0.5 units at 4.0+

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