Newcastle Jets v Western Sydney Wanderers

Friday 22 December 7:50pm – McDonald Jones Stadium

Match Overview

For the second consecutive week Newcastle scored in the last few minutes to beat Adelaide 2-1 at home. Once again, they may have been a little off the pace for parts of the match but got away with it. Of course, they would like to do it a bit easier but at least you know they won’t lie down. They have dealt with the loss of Roy O’Donovan well and have no new injury worries.

Western Sydney were successful for the first time under coach Josep Gombau last week when they outclassed Central Coast 2-0 in Gosford. They still allowed plenty of opportunities to the Mariners which with Josh Risdon now out suspended would still be of concern. The Mariners were not at their best last week so did this flatter Western Sydney?

Key Statistics

  • Five of six Newcastle home matches and 10 of 11 overall have seen over 2.5 goals
  • Newcastle have averaged 16 total shots and 6.5 on target per match at home both ranked first
  • Newcastle have conceded on average just 8.3 (1st) total shots and 2.8 (2nd) on target
  • One of six Western Sydney away matches and 4 of 10 overall have seen over 2.5 goals
  • Western Sydney have averaged 9.5 (10th) total shots and 2.8 (10th) shots on target away from home
  • Western Sydney have conceded and average of 13 (6th) total shots and 5 (9th) shots on target away from home

Verdict

I wasn’t completely convinced of the Wanderers win last week and they will face a much sterner defence this week. Despite the good record of the Jets defence there has been goals in their matches this season and they will likely continue.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals for 2 units at $1.70+ (max bet 3 units)

 BACK – Newcastle for 1 unit at 2.1+

Wellington Phoenix v Sydney FC

Saturday 23 December 5:35pm – Westpac Stadium

Match Overview

Wellington tried hard but were eventually beaten by 1-0 by Perth last week. They have since released striker Dario Vidosic along with his father and assistant coach Rado Vidosic. A very strange decision for me as Dario had been performing quite well to my eye. They regain arguably their two best players in Michael McGlinchey and Andrew Durante from injury.

Sydney didn’t have it all their own way but eventually won 3-1 at home to Melbourne City last week. They have no injury concerns and may have Milos Ninkovic from the start to add to their attacking strengths.

Key Statistics

  • Wellington have won six of their last 19 home matches losing seven
  • Wellington have averaged 12.8 (5th) total shots and four (4th) shots on target at home however excluding the home match v Perth they have managed just 9.2 TS and 2.8 SOT both ranked 10th
  • Sydney have won 29 of their 38 matches losing just 2 since the start of 2016/17
  • Sydney have averaged 12 (4th) total shots and 4 (6th) shots on target away from home

Verdict

Sydney have only drawn two of their last three trips to Wellington but they will be too strong here.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney at -1 on the Asian Handicap market at 1.8+ for 1.5 units

 BACK – Sydney/Sydney half full double at 2.1+ for 1.5 units

Melbourne City v Melbourne Victory

Saturday 23 December 7:50pm – AAMI Park

Match Overview

City were OK in their 1-3 away loss to Sydney last week. But with Manny Muscat now out of defence and the likelihood of a makeshift striker, Marcin Budzinski or youth team star Nathaniel Atkinson due to injuries to Ross McCormick and Bruce Kamau.

Victory won 2-1 in Brisbane thanks mostly to a scintillating start where they could have had four or fice. The Roar though were dreadful in the first half and arguably had the better of the second half, so I must play the contrarian to the fact that the Victory are “back”.

Key Statistics

  • 19 of 23 Derbies have seen over 2.5 goals at an average of 3.18 per match
  • City have won eight, Victory 10 and there have been five draws in Melbourne Derbies
  • Five of 11 City matches this season and 20 of 27 last season have seen over 2.5 goals
  • Six of 11 Victory matches this season and 18 of 27 last season have seen over 2.5 goals

Verdict

The tradition in this match is for goals and I have made good profit taking the over in the past few seasons. The run may come to a halt but I’m happy to play that way again. I’m tempted to side with City but would need to see how the team sheet looks before chiming in.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.7+ for 3 units (max bet)


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