Expert Weekly A-League Predictions

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Perth v Western United

Match Overview

Perth went to Sydney and finished up with a 0-0 draw, not bad I suppose on the back of a home loss to City, away loss to Newcastle and draw at Brisbane in the previous 3 matches. They have certainly come off the boil.

Western United have smashed Adelaide 5-1 away from home and Central Coast 6-2 at home. Obviously beating those 2 teams in the form they are in is potentially not the best guide, however those type of results certainly breeds a lot of confidence. It is just possible they might have turned the corner and given they are one position and 4 points behind their opponent are not out of this.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)PerthWST
Games Played2020
Points31 (5)27 (6)
Win8 (6)8 (6)
Draw7 (1)3 (7)
Lost5 (10)9 (4)
Goals Scored35 (3)34 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.2 (11)9.4 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.9 (4)4.5 (7)
Goals Conceded22 (3)28 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)7.5 (1)10.5 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.4 (1)4.8 (8)
Clean Sheets7 (1)4 (7)
Over 2.511 (7)10 (8)
Under 2.59 (5)10 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.36 (3)0.38 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.32 (6)0.29 (4)

Statistics Comment

Perth very strong on the defensive front, however conceded 3 in their last home match.

Western United statistics don’t look to align particularly well with Perth but they are certainly on the rise.

Prediction

Could be an upset brewing at big odds in a high scoring match. Western United 3-2.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Over 2.5 Goals at $1.50 for a risk of 1 unit

BACK – Over 3.5 Goals at $2.40 for a risk of 1 unit


Central Coast v Melbourne City

Match Overview

Central Coast were much better than I or the betting market expected away to Brisbane last week. That said they still lost 0-1 to move to 9 losses on end. Unfortunate for them that they lose Daniel De Silva given he is now their only injured player.

City dominated plenty of attacking stats last week but looked very vulnerable defending quick counters from Western Sydney in their 1-1 draw. They were coming off the high of beating Perth that was an energy sapping result. Rostyn Griffiths and Adrian Luna return from suspension to add something to the midfield.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CCCity
Games Played2121
Points13 (11)37 (2)
Win4 (11)11 (2)
Draw1 (10)4 (5)
Lost16 (1)6 (8)
Goals Scored20 (11)37 (2)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.8 (5)11.8 (3)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.8 (10)5.6 (1)
Goals Conceded47 (11)30 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.7 (11)9.7 (4)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)6.2 (11)4.4 (4)
Clean Sheets1 (11)5 (4)
Over 2.514 (3)15 (2)
Under 2.57 (6)6 (9)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.25 (10)0.32 (6)
Shots On Concession Rate0.36 (9)0.33 (7)

Statistics Comment

Mariners continue to sit at the foot of the ladder and really don’t look like improving anytime soon.

City continue to be reasonably strong across the park albeit their actual number of goals conceded needs to improve.

Prediction

Couldn’t back City at the shorts and an upset wouldn’t shock, but hard to put too much trust in the Mariners. Central Coast 3-2.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Central Coast at 4.5+ for 1 unit

BACK – Over 3.5 goals at 2.1+ for 2 units


Western Sydney v Sydney

Match Overview

Western Sydney went to City last week and were pretty good value for the point in their 1-1 draw. They sat back and absorbed a lot of pressure but looked dangerous on the counter. This was a similar pattern to when they beat Sydney just a few weeks ago. Once again, mystifying to me why Keanu Baccus is not playing, obviously I’m missing something, but he should be in the starting 11.

Sydney played out a 0-0 draw with Perth in a reasonably dull match. They still maintain their hefty ladder leading position and have a 22-point gap over Western Sydney. Sydney also have a fully fit squad to call upon.

Western Sydney has beaten Sydney 1-0 twice this season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSWSydney
Games Played2019
Points25 (8)47 (1)
Win7 (8)15 (1)
Draw4 (5)2 (9)
Lost9 (4)2 (11)
Goals Scored26 (7)41 (1)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.1 (4)9.8 (5)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.3 (8)5.3 (3)
Goals Conceded29 (6)15 (2)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.9 (9)8.6 (2)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.9 (9)3.9 (2)
Clean Sheets3 (9)6 (2)
Over 2.510 (8)13 (5)
Under 2.510 (2)6 (9)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (7)0.41 (1)
Shots On Concession Rate0.3 (5)0.2 (1)

Statistics Comment

No stats that can push the fact that Western Sydney should be able to compete with Sydney other than the couple of wins against them already this season.

Prediction

Sydney were very leg weary a few weeks ago when beaten by the Wanderers. No such issues this week. Sydney 2-0.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Sydney to win at 1.8+ for 2 units

Wellington v Victory

Match Overview

Wellington were once again very strong beating Central Coast 3-1 in Gosford, as noted last week they have had a nice little spell at home and I think they are as likely as any of their competition to run into the coveted 2nd position on the ladder. They miss only a couple of long-term injured players and will be looking to build on their recent run of 3 wins on the bounce.

Victory were clearly the inferior team last week losing 1-4 to Sydney at Marvel Stadium. The absence of Robbie Kruse and Adama Traore showed and they now lose Tim Hoogland and Giancarlo Gallifuoco from a threadbare defence.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WellingtonVictory
Games Played1920
Points33 (3)20 (9)
Win10 (3)5 (9)
Draw3 (5)5 (3)
Lost6 (8)10 (3)
Goals Scored30 (6)24 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.8 (5)9.6 (8)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.6 (6)3.9 (10)
Goals Conceded23 (4)32 (8)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.4 (6)9.2 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.7 (6)4.2 (3)
Clean Sheets4 (6)5 (2)
Over 2.512 (6)13 (4)
Under 2.57 (6)7 (6)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.34 (5)0.31 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (2)0.39 (10)

Statistics Comment

Wellington potentially over-performing when we look at their stats, but remembering they started the season with four straight losses we can discount that.

Victory are the lower table team their stats point to. Their concession and conversion rates are awful, and they have been helped by a few clean sheets more than I would have expected given their defence.

Prediction

Wellington look a strong bet at around 2.1 and I wouldn’t be surprised to see them firm heavily. Wellington 3-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Wellington to win at 1.8+ for a risk of 3 units


Sydney v Perth

Match Overview

Sydney bounced back from their poor loss to Western Sydney to comfortably dispatch Victory 4-1 at Marvel Stadium. They just win at home, they just win everywhere. They have a fully fit squad and still a 10-point buffer at the top of the ladder from their nearest rival with a pair of games in hand.

Perth went 0-3 behind to City after 35 mins. They naturally dominated after that point and were probably unfortunate not to get a point, however, there were some alarm bells about the ease of which they were opened up.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyPerth
Games Played1819
Points46 (1)30 (4)
Win15 (1)8 (5)
Draw1 (9)6 (1)
Lost2 (11)5 (10)
Goals Scored41 (1)35 (3)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.8 (5)9.4 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (3)5.1 (4)
Goals Conceded15 (2)22 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9 (2)7.5 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.1 (2)3.4 (1)
Clean Sheets5 (2)6 (1)
Over 2.513 (4)11 (7)
Under 2.55 (9)8 (5)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.43 (1)0.36 (3)
Shots On Concession Rate0.21 (1)0.34 (8)

Statistics Comment

Sydney still clearly the benchmark. Nothing they aren’t at the top or near the top in the rankings and their conversion and concession rates are off the charts when we consider the league long term average is around 30%.

Perth went 7 matches, 6 wins, conceding just 2 goals and keeping 6 clean sheets. Since then they have conceded {2,2,1,4,2} and won 1 match.

Prediction

Perth have the quality to bounce back. But Sydney with 8 wins from 9 at home won’t make it easy. Sydney 2-0.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Sydney to win at 1.8+ for 2 units


City v Western Sydney

Match Overview

City went to Perth and rushed out to a 3-0 lead in 34 minutes. Naturally, they went on the back foot from there, but the fact is they managed to fight their way through it and secure a very important win over one of their major rivals for the very important 2nd position on the ladder.

After 3 wins and a draw in 4 matches, Western Sydney fell back to earth in a big way losing 1-3 to Brisbane. Not clear to me why Keanu Baccus didn’t play last week but has once again been promoted to the squad this week and he will certainly tighten them up and give them much more attacking output.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CityWSW
Games Played2019
Points36 (2)24 (8)
Win11 (2)7 (8)
Draw3 (5)3 (5)
Lost6 (8)9 (4)
Goals Scored36 (2)25 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)11.8 (3)10.3 (4)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.7 (1)4.3 (8)
Goals Conceded29 (7)28 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.7 (4)11 (9)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (4)4.9 (9)
Clean Sheets5 (2)3 (8)
Over 2.515 (2)10 (8)
Under 2.55 (9)9 (3)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.32 (6)0.31 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.33 (6)0.3 (5)

Statistics Comment

City more progressive in attack then in recent seasons. To be serious title contenders they need to improve their conversion and concession rates.

Western Sydney stats suggest a team that won’t make the 6. They had some momentum and may be able to pull it back but need to improve across the park.

Prediction

City should be able to get over the top of the Wanderers. City 2-0.

Betting Strategy

BACK – City to win at 1.7+ for a risk of 2 units


Brisbane v Central Coast

Match Overview

Brisbane were strong 3-1 winners over the Wanderers last week to continue their good form. They seem to be easing into their position around 4th to 7th in the competition but showing clear superiority over the lesser teams. They have a full-strength squad to choose from.

Central Coast capitulated again last week going down 1-3 at home to Wellington. That’s now 8 losses on end and going backwards they have conceded {3,6,3,2,4,3}. They have a full-strength squad, but it is hard to see how they turn themselves around.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)BrisbaneCC
Games Played2020
Points29 (5)13 (11)
Win8 (5)4 (10)
Draw5 (3)1 (9)
Lost7 (7)15 (1)
Goals Scored23 (9)20 (11)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.4 (9)9.8 (5)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.3 (8)3.8 (11)
Goals Conceded24 (5)46 (11)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.2 (5)13.8 (11)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.6 (5)6.3 (11)
Clean Sheets5 (2)1 (11)
Over 2.57 (11)14 (3)
Under 2.513 (1)6 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.27 (9)0.27 (9)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (2)0.37 (9)

Statistics Comment

Brisbane have won 5 of 9 at home whilst the Coast have lost 9 of 10 away. Brisbane have only conceded 2 or more goals 5 times against Sydney, City x 2, Wellington and Western United

Prediction

Brisbane far too strong for a dispirited Mariners. Brisbane 3-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Brisbane -1.5 goals in the Asian Handicap market at 1.9+ for 3 units

Central Coast v Wellington

Match Overview

Central Coast have now lost seven in a row after what can now be likely called an anomaly of a win against Victory in Round 14. They at least have a full squad to choose from on their return to Gosford however the manner of their 2-6 capitulation to Western United provides more questions than answers.

Wellington had the bye last week and will come into this fresh off a pair of back to back home games in New Zealand. It will be interesting to see if they are a little slow to begin but what a luxury it must have been home for virtually an entire month. Think this could be a very big positive in the run into the finals with a few leg-weary teams ahead of them.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CCWel
Games Played1918
Points13 (11)30 (3)
Win4 (10)9 (3)
Draw1 (9)3 (5)
Lost14 (1)6 (8)
Goals Scored19 (11)27 (6)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.5 (8)10.1 (5)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.8 (11)4.6 (6)
Goals Conceded43 (11)22 (4)
Total Shots Against (p/m)14 (11)10.5 (6)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)6.4 (11)4.8 (6)
Clean Sheets1 (11)4 (6)
Over 2.513 (3)11 (6)
Under 2.56 (8)7 (6)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.26 (9)0.33 (5)
Shots On Concession Rate0.36 (10)0.26 (2)

Statistics Comment

Nothing that the Mariners seem to try appears to be working and they are just sliding further into the mire and off the bottom of the table points and stats. Wellington remain a very solid team across the park. Even more when we consider they lost their first 4 matches of the season. Since those games they are 9W – 3D – 2L.

Prediction

Mariners will try but in the end this should be comfortable for Wellington. Wellington 3-0.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Wellington -1 in the Asian Handicap market at 2.1+ for 3 units


Brisbane v Western Sydney

Match Overview

Brisbane went down 0-1 to Melbourne City last week but once again showed they are very difficult to break down and were not out of the contest at any stage. They are at full strength and the possible only negative is a return to playing at Suncorp given their last match was at Redcliffe in front of a full house.

After defeating Sydney 1-0 at Kogarah last week the Wanderers have now won 3 and drawn 1 since new coach Jean-Paul De Marigny has taken over. They were good last week and for large parts made Sydney look insipid which is a strong form reference. They lose Daniel Georgievski to suspension but get Keanu Baccus back. They too have shown they are a much tighter ship defensively in the last 4 matches.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)BrisbaneWSW
Games Played1918
Points26 (6)24 (7)
Win7 (6)7 (6)
Draw5 (3)3 (5)
Lost7 (7)8 (6)
Goals Scored20 (10)24 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.1 (10)10.8 (4)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.2 (9)4.4 (7)
Goals Conceded23 (5)25 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.4 (5)10.8 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.7 (5)4.9 (8)
Clean Sheets5 (2)3 (8)
Over 2.56 (11)9 (9)
Under 2.513 (1)9 (3)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.25 (10)0.3 (8)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (2)0.28 (4)

Statistics Comment

Very similar teams. Brisbane still bucking the trend and have clearly the most under 2.5 games at 13 of 19. Western Sydney also in the top 3 in that stat.

Prediction

This appears to be a very tight match with little separating the teams. Draw 1-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Back Under 2.5 goals at 1.9+ for 3 units


Victory v Sydney

Match Overview

Victory were too good in the end for Adelaide United winning 2-1 at Marvel Stadium. They have been on the improve the last few weeks however that little run may be severely impeded here with Adama Traore and Robbie Kruse missing.

Sydney were dreadful against Western Sydney last week. Naturally hard for them to be up for it every match with a 10 point lead and 2 games in hand but they were very flat. Paulo Retre returns which is an important addition as it will like mean Adrian Caceres can replace Alex Baumjohann on the right wing who was extremely poor last week.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)VicSyd
Games Played1917
Points20 (9)43 (1)
Win5 (9)14 (1)
Draw5 (3)1 (9)
Lost9 (3)2 (11)
Goals Scored23 (8)37 (1)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.7 (7)9.5 (8)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.9 (10)5.4 (3)
Goals Conceded28 (9)14 (2)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.1 (2)9.1 (2)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.1 (2)4.1 (2)
Clean Sheets5 (2)5 (2)
Over 2.512 (4)12 (4)
Under 2.57 (6)5 (9)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (6)0.41 (1)
Shots On Concession Rate0.36 (10)0.2 (1)

Statistics Comment

Both tight defensive teams however it seems to matter little when it comes to ‘Big Blue’ matches with 16 of 27 matches in Melbourne and 30 of 53 all-time seeing over 2.5 goals. Adelaide matches continue to be very open and it is no shock to see 15 of 18 as over 2.5 goals. 7 of 18 have been over 3.5 goals.

Prediction

Sydney demolished Victory 3-0 just 4 matches ago. They are both trending a little differently now but Sydney are still a superior lineup. Sydney 2-1

Betting Strategy

BACK – Sydney to win at 2.3+ for a risk of 1.5 units

City v Brisbane

Match Overview

City had the week off last week so will come into this fresh for the break. They lost 2 of their previous 3 against Wellington and Adelaide either side of a dominant derby win. Harrison Delbridge is a positive return from injury.

Brisbane were good value for their 1-1 draw with Perth last week and continue to show how effective their formation is in strangling their opposition. They have a fully fit squad to choose from.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CityBrisbane
Games Played1818
Points30 (2)26 (6)
Win9 (2)7 (6)
Draw3 (5)5 (3)
Lost6 (7)6 (7)
Goals Scored32 (2)20 (9)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.1 (3)9.4 (7)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.7 (2)4.3 (8)
Goals Conceded27 (7)22 (4)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.7 (4)10.3 (5)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (4)4.7 (5)
Clean Sheets4 (5)5 (2)
Over 2.514 (2)6 (11)
Under 2.54 (9)12 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (6)0.26 (9)
Shots On Concession Rate0.34 (8)0.26 (2)

Statistics Comment

City hold a small advantage in attacking output, but both are very similar when it comes to defensive stability. Brisbane shots against and goals conceded is even stronger when we consider they have conceded 10 goals in just 3 matches with City (4-3 win and 2-2 draw) and the 1-5 loss to Sydney.

Prediction

City far too short in this match against a team very hard to break down. Brisbane 2-1.

Betting Strategy

LAY – City up to $1.8 for a risk of 3 units


Sydney v Western Sydney

Match Overview

The re-arranged round 18 fixture starts the weekend and it should be a fantastic match.

Sydney eased to a 3-0 win at the Mariners last week. They do have the quick turnaround from having played Sunday night and lose Paulo Retre to suspension.

Hard to see who deputises in the holding midfield role but with Alex Baumjohann back from his suspension I am guessing Adrian Caceres drops back to that position with Baumjohann into the wide right position. This will produce an incredibly attacking setup for Sydney

Western Sydney won a topsy turvy match against Adelaide 5-2. Has to be noted Adelaide were severely under-strength but at the same time, the Wanderers do appear to have turned a corner after their long period of struggles post their bright start.

Wanderers beat Sydney in the home teams only loss so far this season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyWSW
Games Played1617
Points43 (1)21 (7)
Win14 (1)6 (7)
Draw1 (9)3 (5)
Lost1 (11)8 (6)
Goals Scored37 (1)23 (6)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.4 (7)10.8 (4)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (3)4.4 (7)
Goals Conceded13 (2)25 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.1 (2)10.8 (7)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.1 (2)4.9 (7)
Clean Sheets5 (2)2 (10)
Over 2.512 (3)9 (7)
Under 2.54 (9)8 (4)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.44 (1)0.31 (6)
Shots On Concession Rate0.2 (1)0.3 (5)

Statistics Comment

Sydney still a dominant ladder leader. They along with Perth are the only 2 teams to have a higher than 50% rate of shots on target compared to total shots, so it is no fluke that they then convert at such a high rate due to the quality of chances they create.

Western Sydney are improving but again have not had a serious challenge for 3 weeks. Still only 2 clean sheets for the season against the hottest attack.

Prediction

Should be a good game with a terrific atmosphere. Sydney too much quality in final third. Sydney 3-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Sydney -0.75 in the Asian Handicap market at $1.9+ for 2 units


Melbourne Victory v Adelaide

Match Overview

Victory are starting to find some sort of form albeit hard to see it in the result of a 1-1 draw at Newcastle such is the low base they are coming off. They only had 35% of possession last start, a far cry from the teams that used to like to dominate in possession.

Adelaide lost to Wanderers but were well down on troops. They get James Troisi back into the squad but lose Ben Halloran and are still missing Ryan Strain and Stefan Mauk which hurts them.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)VictoryAdelaide
Games Played1818
Points17 (9)27 (5)
Win4 (9)9 (2)
Draw5 (3)0 (11)
Lost9 (2)9 (2)
Goals Scored21 (8)32 (2)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.2 (9)12.6 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.7 (11)5.1 (4)
Goals Conceded27 (7)32 (9)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.1 (2)12.8 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.1 (2)5.8 (10)
Clean Sheets5 (2)3 (8)
Over 2.511 (5)15 (1)
Under 2.57 (6)3 (11)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (6)0.35 (3)
Shots On Concession Rate0.36 (10)0.3 (5)

Statistics Comment

Victory output continues to struggle. They are reasonably strong in defence which is their saving grace.

Adelaide matches continue to be very open and it is no shock to see 15 of 18 as over 2.5 goals. 7 of 18 have been over 3.5 goals.

Prediction

Typical open Adelaide match that Victory may be able to take advantage of. Victory 3-2.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Victory to win at $2.0+ for 2 units

BACK – Over 3.5 goals at $2.0+ for 1 unit

Wellington v Western United

Match Overview

Wellington have continued to impress this season and after another strong performance beating City 1-0 last week, they are just 3 points out of 2nd place. Given they started the season losing their first 4 matches they have since picked up 27 of 39 possible points a credit to rookie manager Ufuk Talay.

Western United have been up and down but are on a serious down trend now. The fact they lost at home 0-1 to Brisbane is not the issue. What is the issue is the manner of the performance and the fact they could not muster even a single shot on target. Perhaps Alessandro Diamanti will start after 35 minutes off the bench last week. This will help but they seem a disjointed and dispirited squad at the moment.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WellingtonWST
Games Played1717
Points27 (5)21 (7)
Win8 (4)6 (7)
Draw3 (5)3 (5)
Lost6 (7)8 (4)
Goals Scored25 (5)23 (6)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.7 (6)9.1 (11)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.4 (6)4 (9)
Goals Conceded22 (5)5 (1)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.9 (7)10.5 (6)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.9 (7)4.8 (6)
Clean Sheets3 (7)4 (4)
Over 2.511 (3)8 (9)
Under 2.56 (6)9 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.34 (3)0.34 (3)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (2)0.28 (4)

Statistics Comment

Teams are reasonably matched on the season stats, however Wellington are trending positively whilst United are trending negatively.

Prediction

Wellington to prove too strong. Wellington 2-0.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Wellington -1.0 in the Asian Handicap market at 1.9+ for 2 units


Western Sydney v Adelaide

Match Overview

Western Sydney have played well enough in their last couple of matches however the fact is they beat Central Coast and then had to settle for a 1-1 draw with Newcastle. With Simon Cox and Bruce Kamau heading towards 90-minute efforts they will likely continue to improve.

At the start of the season it looked as if they may turn Bankwest Stadium into a fortress, but they are now winless in 6 since the round 3 victory over Sydney

Adelaide didn’t have it their own way last week at home to Central Coast scoring in the 82nd and 84th minutes to win 2-0. They are missing a couple of key players in Mauk and Troisi but found 15-year old Mohamed Toure to be the difference last week becoming the youngest ever to score in the A-League.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSWAdelaide
Games Played1617
Points18 (8)27 (4)
Win5 (8)9 (2)
Draw3 (5)0 (11)
Lost8 (4)8 (4)
Goals Scored18 (9)30 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.5 (4)12.6 (1)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.1 (8)5.2 (4)
Goals Conceded23 (6)27 (8)
Total Shots Against (p/m)11 (8)12.3 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5 (8)5.6 (10)
Clean Sheets2 (10)3 (7)
Over 2.58 (9)14 (1)
Under 2.58 (3)3 (11)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.28 (8)0.34 (3)
Shots On Concession Rate0.29 (6)0.28 (4)

Statistics Comment

Western Sydney just continue to battle along without showing the type of improvement they need to climb the ladder.

Adelaide have started to tighten up in defence since conceding 3 to Western United in round 16. To be serious contenders they do need to keep improving and pick up a few more clean sheets.

Prediction

Western Sydney need to start winning to close the 7-point gap to the top 6. Adelaide matches still tend to be quite open and over 2.5 goals tends to prevail. Adelaide 2-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Adelaide to win at 2.2+ for 2 units


Brisbane Perth

Match Overview

Brisbane went to Western United and came away with the 1-0 victory. It was a result based on perseverance as it took quite some time to get over the top of their opponents. One thing that wasn’t an issue for them was their rock-solid defence. They have now lost just once in their last 8 matches.

Perth had the week off last week before their unlucky Champions League loss in Japan. They have won 7 and drawn 2 of their last 9 matches to rise to 3rd on the table, just 1 point off City in 2nd with two games in hand.

This match is being played at a sold-out Redcliffe Stadium which produced an epic 7 goal thriller earlier in the season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)BrisbanePerth
Games Played1716
Points25 (6)29 (3)
Win7 (6)8 (4)
Draw4 (3)5 (1)
Lost6 (7)3 (10)
Goals Scored19 (8)31 (3)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.5 (8)9.2 (10)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.4 (6)5.1 (5)
Goals Conceded21 (4)16 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.1 (5)7.3 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.6 (5)3.3 (1)
Clean Sheets5 (2)6 (1)
Over 2.56 (11)9 (7)
Under 2.511 (1)7 (5)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.25 (9)0.38 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (3)0.3 (7)

Statistics Comment

Both teams build from a very strong defensive base exemplified by the fact they are number 1 and 2 rank in clean sheets.

Prediction

Perth arguably have the better individual players, but these are two strong units. Think Brisbane might just get them in a tight match. Brisbane 1-0.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Under 2.5 goals at 1.9+ for 2 units

BACK – Brisbane to win at 2.8+ for 1 unit

Adelaide v Central Coast

Match Overview

Adelaide went to Brisbane and lost 1-2 but with an acceptable performance all the same. Prior to that they had won 3 on the bounce against the 3 Victorian clubs. They’re playing well enough to win this match despite having a few key players out.

Central Coast lost the F3 Derby 3-4 and barring the late turnaround against Victory, which was more luck than skill, they would have been coming into this with a record of losing 7 on the trot. The win prior to that was at home to Adelaide which may be some solace.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideCC
Games Played1616
Points24 (4)13 (10)
Win8 (3)4 (9)
Draw0 (11)1 (9)
Lost8 (4)11 (1)
Goals Scored28 (4)17 (9)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.9 (1)9.6 (7)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (4)3.9 (9)
Goals Conceded27 (9)32 (10)
Total Shots Against (p/m)12.6 (10)13.8 (11)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.6 (10)6.2 (11)
Clean Sheets2 (8)1 (11)
Over 2.514 (1)11 (3)
Under 2.52 (11)5 (7)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.33 (5)0.27 (9)
Shots On Concession Rate0.3 (4)0.32 (8)

Statistics Comment

Looks like plenty of goals with these 2 teams near the bottom in everything defensively.

Adelaide clearly the superior attacking team with shout output far outweighing the Mariners.

Prediction

An open match should ensue, only Adelaide complacency can hurt them. Adelaide 3-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Over 3.5 goals at 2.0+ for 1 unit

BACK – Adelaide -1.25 at 1.8+ for 1 unit


Western United v Brisbane Roar

Match Overview

Western United have been very inconsistent, playing well at times before looking awful in the next match. They had a bye last week but were lucky to survive at Newcastle the week before to come away with a 0-0 draw. Alessandro Diamanti returns from injury but would be a query to get a strong 90 minutes even if he starts.

Brisbane have been quietly going about their business with their only loss in 7 a narrow loss away at Sydney. They were good in their win against Adelaide at home last week and have continued to solidify themselves defensively whilst now starting to chip away enough in front of goals.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSTBrisbane
Games Played1616
Points21 (7)22 (6)
Win6 (6)6 (6)
Draw3 (5)4 (2)
Lost7 (6)6 (7)
Goals Scored23 (6)18 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.7 (6)9.5 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.3 (7)4.3 (7)
Goals Conceded22 (4)21 (4)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.3 (5)10.9 (7)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.6 (5)4.9 (7)
Clean Sheets4 (3)4 (3)
Over 2.58 (9)6 (11)
Under 2.58 (2)10 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.34 (3)0.26 (10)
Shots On Concession Rate0.3 (4)0.27 (2)

Statistics Comment

Western United are at best a mid-table team solid enough at both ends of the park without being spectacular.

Pretty much the same can be said for Brisbane albeit they have a more solid base having conceded more than once only 5 times so far.

Both teams trend to the under with the lowest count of totals under 2.5 goals. Albeit particularly United games can lean to chaos from time to time.

Prediction

Very little to separate the teams. Draw 1-1.

Betting Strategy

BACK – Under 2.5 goals at 2.0+ for 2 units

BACK – The draw at 3.5+ for 1 unit

City v Victory

Match Overview

City were sat back on their heels last week going down 1-3 at a resurgent Adelaide. Potentially they had one eye on the derby this week and they were not terrible. Still for a team sat 2nd there are lingering doubts over their ability to beat the very top teams and in the biggest of games. Something their players and coach attest to publicly which is worrisome. Harrison Delbridge is a massive loss from their central defence.

After their massive win at Kashima Antlers, Victory were able to back up with a strong 2-2 draw at Perth. That was only the 2nd match in 7 that Perth had conceded so it attests to their attacking capabilities. Tim Hoogland is in the squad, if he plays, which I doubt then Victory will be hard to beat. Will be interesting to see if they unleash Marco Rojas from the start.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CityVictory
Games Played1616
Points27 (2)16 (9)
Win8 (2)4 (9)
Draw3 (5)4 (2)
Lost5 (8)8 (3)
Goals Scored30 (2)19 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.6 (2)9.4 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.9 (1)3.8 (11)
Goals Conceded25 (8)24 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.2 (4)9.7 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.6 (4)4.3 (2)
Clean Sheets4 (3)5 (2)
Over 2.513 (1)10 (4)
Under 2.53 (10)6 (6)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.32 (6)0.31 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.34 (9)0.35 (10)

Statistics Comment

City are strong across the park statistically. Are they strong across the park mentally?

Victory have amassed 5 clean sheets and keep teams to a low attacking output. Their attack will start to light up now.

Both teams concede at higher than average rates and despite it being a derby 22/30 matches have finished with 3 goals or more.

Prediction

As usual, I expect a relatively open match the result is hard to call but with Delbridge I am leaning to Victory. Victory 2-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals 1.6+ for 2 units (max bet 3 units)

 BACK – Victory to win at 2.8 for 1 unit


Sydney v Western Sydney

Match Overview

Sydney were flat against the Roar winning 1-0. They have a 13-point lead and by game time depending on other results may be looking at a 16-point advantage. They will lift for this significant match. Interestingly their only loss of the season was against the Wanderers, that said it was a game that they completely dominated bar on the scoreboard.

Western Sydney bounced back to some form with a comfortable win over the Mariners the return to form was in line with the return of Keanu Baccus. They still have a mountain to climb to be competitive in this type of fixture derby or not.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyWSW
Games Played1515
Points40 (1)17 (8)
Win13 (1)5 (7)
Draw1 (9)2 (8)
Lost1 (11)8 (3)
Goals Scored34 (1)17 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.6 (8)10.6 (4)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.4 (3)3.9 (9)
Goals Conceded13 (2)22 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.5 (2)11 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.3 (2)4.9 (7)
Clean Sheets4 (3)2 (8)
Over 2.511 (3)8 (7)
Under 2.54 (9)7 (3)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.42 (1)0.29 (8)
Shots On Concession Rate0.2 (1)0.3 (5)

Statistics Comment

Sydney are just a phenomenon at the moment doing it at both ends of the park. Their total shots is not a concern as they hit the target more than not and covert at a rate off the scales thanks to the sheer skill of their attacking players.

Western Sydney may gain some traction but need to lift their defensive performance.

Prediction

Sydney to be far too strong and will be fired up to atone for their only loss of the season. Perth 3-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney -0.75 goals in the Asian Handicap market at 1.7+ for 3 units (max bet 3 units)

Central Coast v Western Sydney

Match Overview

Central Coast are certainly not the most reliable having spent the better part of the last few seasons at or near the foot of the table. They do fight well at home despite losing in Gosford to an unlucky own goal last week.

Western Sydney had the bye last week and have parted ways with coach Markus Babbel since their last outing 0-1 loss to the Glory. They get their best player in Keanu Baccus back from Olyroos international duty which is a big positive. Still they are 3rd last and just one point in front of the Central Coast for a reason having picked up 5 points from their last 11 matches.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CCWSW
Games Played1414
Points13 (9)14 (8)
Win4 (8)4 (8)
Draw1 (9)2 (7)
Lost9 (1)8 (3)
Goals Scored13 (10)14 (9)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.3 (10)10 (5)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.8 (10)3.8 (10)
Goals Conceded24 (9)21 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.5 (11)10.9 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)6.1 (11)4.9 (8)
Clean Sheets1 (11)2 (7)
Over 2.59 (5)7 (9)
Under 2.55 (6)7 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.25 (10)0.26 (9)
Shots On Concession Rate0.28 (4)0.3 (6)

Statistics Comment

Nothing too pretty about either team from a statistical point of view although the Wanderers still possess a stronger defensive look about them.

Prediction

Mariners look far too big a price at home. Central Coast 2-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Central Coast at 2.7+ to win for 2 units


Sydney v Brisbane

Match Overview

If it was possible Sydney went to a whole new level in dismantling Melbourne Victory 3-0 last week. It was a stunning performance that underlined the gulf in class between them and probably Perth as their nearest current competitors. They have Alex Baumjohann suspended which is not ideal however he should be ably replaced by Anthony Caceres.

Brisbane are now undefeated in 5 matches having won their past couple by 1-0 at home to Wellington then last week at Central Coast. There is no doubt their sturdy structure is allowing them to keep matches close in a general sense although they were hammered 5-1 by Sydney back in Round 9.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyBrisbane
Games Played1414
Points37 (1)19 (7)
Win12 (1)5 (7)
Draw1 (9)4 (1)
Lost1 (11)5 (7)
Goals Scored33 (1)16 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.6 (8)9.4 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (3)4.1 (8)
Goals Conceded13 (3)19 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.7 (3)10.5 (7)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (3)4.7 (6)
Clean Sheets3 (5)4 (3)
Over 2.511 (3)5 (11)
Under 2.53 (9)9 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.45 (1)0.28 (8)
Shots On Concession Rate0.21 (1)0.29 (5)

Statistics Comment

As noted on plenty of occasions Sydney build their attack on quality over quantity. They also have a rock-solid defence and one of the best, if not the best current keeper in the competition. They convert at the best rate and concede at the least rate.

Brisbane are clear leaders in the “under 2.5” category with their rigid 4-4-2 structure hard to break down.

Prediction

Not sure it will be 5-1 this time but Sydney should be comfortable. Sydney 2-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney -1.0 in the Asian Handicap market at $1.8+ for 3 units


Perth v Victory

Match Overview

Perth managed another clean sheet last week in a goalless draw at City. That was their 5th in 6 matches with the only blip being conceding a couple to Newcastle in a match they eventually won 6-2. They are clearly the 2nd best team in the competition at the moment, the only logical current contenders to Sydney in my opinion.

Victory will be buoyed by their win in the ACL Playoff match in Japan against powerhouse Kashima Antlers. They were around $9 to win in 90-mins in that match so it was very much unexpected. Perhaps it was the distraction they needed after a horrible 90 mins against Sydney.

Ola Toivonen played just 8 mins midweek and they have Rojas, Donachie and Hoogland in the squad so have a formidable squad once again. I can’t ignore the fact they have lost 3 on the bounce and been quite poor against Adelaide and Sydney.

The additional travel and extra match along with the fact that they are starting to lose touch with the top 6 make this a very important match for them.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)PerthVictory
Games Played1415
Points25 (3)15 (8)
Win7 (3)4 (8)
Draw4 (1)3 (3)
Lost3 (10)8 (3)
Goals Scored25 (3)17 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.1 (11)9.7 (7)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5 (5)3.9 (9)
Goals Conceded12 (2)22 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)7.5 (1)9.6 (2)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.4 (1)4.3 (2)
Clean Sheets6 (1)5 (2)
Over 2.57 (9)9 (5)
Under 2.57 (2)6 (4)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.36 (2)0.29 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (2)0.34 (10)

Statistics Comment

As noted, Perth have built a rock-solid defensive team and that fails to acknowledge their excellent attack. Interestingly like Sydney they really do rely on quality over quantity.

Victory have decent defensive statistics themselves albeit they concede at too high a rate.

Prediction

Potentially an improved performance for Victory and if they include Toivonen, Rojas and Hoogland in their starting line-up I expect a tighter match. However, I would still be inclined to lean to a fresher Perth. Perth 1-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth to win at 1.6+ for 2 units

Western United v Adelaide

Match Overview

Western United were comfortable in beating Central Coast, racing to a 3-0 lead in 21 minutes.
They bring this game to Footscray and it will be interesting to see how the crowd responds but on a nice weather day I suspect it will be quite good.

Perhaps this fact is the reason they are outsiders in the match, the view that is a neutral home ground as I am struggling to see another reason why they are outsiders.

Adelaide were good in their win over the Victory last week but have continued to be very inconsistent in their matches. They came into that match having lost 4 on the trot including losses to Central Coast and Western Sydney. They importantly get James Troisi back which is a big in.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)W UtdAdelaide
Games Played1413
Points20 (5)18 (6)
Win6 (4)6 (4)
Draw2 (6)0 (11)
Lost6 (6)7 (4)
Goals Scored20 (4)20 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.1 (4)12.5 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.4 (7)5.2 (4)
Goals Conceded5 (1)21 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.8 (4)13.1 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (4)5.9 (10)
Clean Sheets3 (3)2 (6)
Over 2.58 (6)11 (2)
Under 2.55 (6)2 (10)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.32 (5)0.29 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.29 (6)0.27 (2)

Statistics Comment

Nothing wrong with Western United at either end of the park albeit with a slightly inferior attacking output.

Adelaide kept just their second clean sheet of the season last week. They were better defensively albeit Victory did spurn a few good chances. Still, their defensive numbers are not good and if not for a good concession rate would be in more trouble.

Prediction

Western United to be too strong and cement a place in the top 6 for now. Western United 2-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Western United to win at 2.2+ for 2 units


Wellington v Newcastle

Match Overview

Wellington went to Brisbane last week looking to set a new club record 10 undefeated but came up short going down 0-1. There was nothing wrong with the display and the result may have been very different but for hitting the crossbar twice and missing several other chances in the first half. Their football is quality and they have a generally healthy team.

Newcastle have come through a tough stretch of City away, Sydney at home, Victory away, losing all 3. It doesn’t get any easier travelling to Wellington. They will be tightened up at the back with he return of captain Nigel Boogaard however they do struggle on the road at the best of times.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WellingtonNewcastle
Games Played1412
Points21 (4)9 (11)
Win6 (4)2 (11)
Draw3 (2)3 (2)
Lost5 (7)8 (1)
Goals Scored20 (4)12 (11)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.1 (4)12.2 (3)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.5 (6)6 (2)
Goals Conceded17 (4)29 (11)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.9 (5)12.5 (9)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.5 (5)5.7 (9)
Clean Sheets2 (6)2 (6)
Over 2.59 (4)7 (8)
Under 2.55 (6)6 (3)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.32 (5)0.17 (11)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (2)0.43 (11)

Statistics Comment

Wellington is looking comfortably a top 6 team, if not better with a reasonably stable set of statistics.

Newcastle again builds plenty of attacking shots but very little quality. This has been the consistent theme the last season and a half. They convert at a league-worst rate and concede at the same.

Prediction

Wellington to bounce back in style. Wellington 3-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Wellington -1.0 Asian Handicap at 1.9+ for 3 units


Melbourne Victory v Sydney FC

Match Overview

Victory went to Adelaide after ridding themselves of coach Marco Kurz but came up well short lucky to only lose 0-1. To be fair their second half was better than their first so perhaps they can continue that momentum. Ola Toivonen is included in the squad along with the returning Marco Rojas.

The problem for the Victory is that I’m not sure their attacking riches can mask the lack of creativity behind them. They are also threadbare in defence with James Donachie suspended and Thomas Deng on international duty. They will almost certainly have one eye on Tuesday’s trip to Kashima Antlers to qualify for the Champions League which is a big focus for this club.

Sydney had the bye last week and it probably came at a good time after looking a little jaded in their last couple of outings. Tough comment when you have won 11 from 13 perhaps but was as much about a few missing players as anything else. Rhyan Grant and Luke Brattan come back into the starting line-up. They still need to prove they can cope without Brandon O’Neill however.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)VictorySydney
Games Played1413
Points15 (7)34 (1)
Win4 (7)11 (1)
Draw3 (2)1 (9)
Lost7 (4)1 (11)
Goals Scored17 (7)30 (1)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.3 (11)9.7 (8)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.6 (11)5.3 (3)
Goals Conceded19 (5)13 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.5 (3)9 (2)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.3 (3)4.1 (2)
Clean Sheets5 (1)2 (6)
Over 2.58 (6)10 (3)
Under 2.56 (3)3 (9)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.34 (3)0.43 (1)
Shots On Concession Rate0.32 (9)0.25 (1)

Statistics Comment

League-high 5 clean sheets will be under pressure tonight. Their creative output is poor which puts plenty of pressure on those at the top end of the park to create chances from nothing.

Sydney continues to be very solid across the park.

Prediction

Sydney to upset the Victory party and the homecoming of the ‘Kiwi Messi’. Sydney 2-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney to win at 2.0+ for 1 unit

Adelaide United v Melbourne Victory

Match Overview

Adelaide lost 0-3 to Perth last week. They weren’t terrible but simply outclassed on the day. Unfortunately for them, they lose James Troisi who has been in excellent form of late. They will appreciate being back at home for the first time since 27/12 however they are three wins and three losses at home and had only a low home ground advantage in terms of results the last few seasons.

Victory dismissed coach Marco Kurz after the calamity of last week’s result to Central Coast when the concession of two late penalties, the second converted in the 100th minute, saw their win turned into defeat. They get Ola Toivonen back this week which is a big addition. They are looking to complete the signing of Marco Rojas this week, which gives the current players extra incentive to perform.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideVictory
Games Played1213
Points15 (6)15 (6)
Win5 (5)4 (7)
Draw0 (11)3 (2)
Lost7 (1)6 (5)
Goals Scored19 (5)17 (6)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.3 (2)9.2 (10)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (4)3.5 (11)
Goals Conceded21 (8)18 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.2 (10)9.2 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)6.1 (10)4.2 (3)
Clean Sheets1 (10)5 (1)
Over 2.511 (2)8 (5)
Under 2.51 (10)5 (3)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.3 (6)0.37 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.29 (4)0.33 (9)

Statistics Comment

Adelaide continue to struggle to hold teams out which has been their Achilles heel all season. Their matches are far too open and end up being lotteries, as witnessed by the fact they have yet to have a draw in 12 matches in a competition where typically around 21% (17% this season) of matches end in draws.

Victory continue to be relatively comfortable defensively. It is interesting as they don’t always look it on the field but have amassed five clean sheets, the highest in the league, not bad for a team that has just parted ways with their coach. Given the front three they now operate with, we can expect they will generate more scoring chances and have the quality to finish them.

Prediction

Victory look very good value despite still being a work in progress. Victory 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Victory to win at $2.80+ for 2 units


Western Sydney Wanderers v Perth Glory

Match Overview

Western Sydney lost 0-2 at Wellington to make it now just one win and two draws from their last 10 matches after starting the season with three straight wins. Coach Markus Babbel is surely on his last legs, particularly if they are beaten again here.

Perth marched on their merry way last week dispatching of Adelaide 3-0 to take their run to five wins on the trot scoring 17 goals, conceding just two and now four clean sheets. To make matters worse for Western Sydney they have Juande returning to his defensive midfield position in place of Jake Brimmer who, whilst played very well last week, is not quite in the same class.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSWPer
Games Played1312
Points14 (8)21 (3)
Win4 (7)6 (3)
Draw2 (6)3 (2)
Lost7 (1)3 (10)
Goals Scored14 (8)24 (3)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.7 (6)9.7 (6)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.9 (9)5.4 (3)
Goals Conceded20 (7)12 (2)
Total Shots Against (p/m)11.2 (9)7.6 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.2 (9)3.5 (1)
Clean Sheets2 (3)4 (2)
Over 2.57 (7)7 (7)
Under 2.56 (2)5 (3)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.27 (9)0.37 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.3 (6)0.29 (4)

Statistics Comment

Nothing really pointing to Western Sydney being able to make any sudden turnaround from the predicament they find themselves in. Defensively they are a particularly weak proposition.

Perth have the momentum in results that their stats, particularly from a defensive point of view. As noted throughout last season and again last week, they thrive on creating quality over quantity hence the high shots on target from relatively low total shots and the high conversion rate.

Prediction

Perth are on a roll, hard to see anything but a Perth win. Perth 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth to win $1.70+ for 2 units

 BACK – Perth to win to nil at $3.50+ for 1 unit

Brisbane v Melbourne City

Match Overview

Brisbane have had a good rest not playing since their New Year’s Day win over Western Sydney. They have been competitive against the lower-ranked teams this season but still struggle against the better teams despite the miraculous 4-3 win they enjoyed over City earlier in the season.

City have proven one of the benchmarks albeit with a tendency for their matches to be rather maddening for supporters, such as last week when after leading 3-0 at half time they were forced to cling on with 10-men after conceding a pair of penalties, not unlike that loss to the Roar in which they also conceded a pair of second half penalties.

They have Harrison Delbridge suspended due to some VAR insanity and Richard Winbichler must be in some doubt despite being named.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)BrisbaneCity
Games Played1112
Points12 (9)22 (2)
Win3 (9)7 (2)
Draw3 (1)1 (8)
Lost5 (6)4 (8)
Goals Scored12 (9)25 (2)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.2 (5)12.7 (1)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.3 (7)6.2 (1)
Goals Conceded17 (6)20 (10)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.6 (7)10.2 (5)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.9 (7)4.8 (5)
Clean Sheets2 (3)2 (3)
Over 2.54 (11)11 (1)
Under 2.57 (1)1 (10)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.26 (9)0.34 (4)
Shots On Concession Rate0.31 (7)0.35 (10)

Statistics Comment

Brisbane are, at best, a mid-table team as we can see by their rankings, they should be scoring more goals given the attacking players at their disposal.

City concede at a rate that is not optimal and do concede a few too many opportunities to their opposition however aside from that are reasonably strong. They have 11 of 12 matches now as over 2.5 goals

Prediction

City appear the stronger team. Some concern as to their starting 11 but they appear decent value. City 3-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Back City to win at 2.0+ for 2 units


Perth v Adelaide

Match Overview

As predicted a few weeks ago, Perth are rocketing up the table having won 4 in a row scoring 14 goals, conceding 2 and keeping 3 clean sheets. To be fair their last 3 have been against Western Sydney, Newcastle and Central Coast but they dismantled City and Victory (despite incredulously losing 0-1) before that.

Adelaide have lost 3 in a row and 4 of their last 5 which continued with an away loss 1-2 at Sydney last week. They were in that match but still couldn’t cope with a Sydney team stripped of 4 of it’s starting 11.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)PerthAdelaide
Games Played1111
Points18 (3)15 (6)
Win5 (3)5 (3)
Draw3 (1)0 (11)
Lost3 (10)6 (2)
Goals Scored21 (3)19 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.4 (9)11.6 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (4)5.3 (4)
Goals Conceded12 (2)18 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)7.3 (1)12.9 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.4 (1)6 (10)
Clean Sheets3 (2)1 (9)
Over 2.56 (9)10 (2)
Under 2.55 (2)1 (10)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.36 (2)0.33 (5)
Shots On Concession Rate0.32 (9)0.27 (2)

Statistics Comment

Perth are now looking like the team of last season with only their concession rate slightly too high. Their total shots hovers quite low comparative to the competition and their own accomplishments from last season, however, they certainly are attuned to go for quality over quantity. Adelaide are still all at sea defensively conceding far too many chances

Prediction

Perth will prove too strong with the likely heat being the only X-Factor. Perth 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth -1.0 on the Asian Handicap market at 2.1+ for 2 units.

 BACK – Perth to win to nil at 3.0+ for 1 unit.

Wellington v Central Coast

Match Overview

Undefeated in their last seven are the Phoenix. Coach Ufuk Talay has them playing very good football led by Mexican import Ulises Davila. The win at Western United was that of a dominant and confident team. They return home having been unlucky not to beat Sydney in their last home match. Alex Rufer again missed out last week and if he returns they only get stronger.

Central Coast were completely outclassed by Perth at home last week. That will happen to plenty of teams and the game before they managed a win against Adelaide at home. They are 2-2-15 in their away matches since the start of last season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WellingtonCC
Games Played1110
Points15 (5)10 (10)
Win4 (6)3 (8)
Draw3 (1)1 (8)
Lost4 (8)6 (1)
Goals Scored16 (5)9 (11)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.5 (5)8.2 (11)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.7 (7)3.9 (10)
Goals Conceded15 (4)17 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.5 (6)13.8 (11)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.8 (6)6.3 (11)
Clean Sheets1 (9)1 (9)
Over 2.58 (3)6 (6)
Under 2.53 (8)4 (7)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (5)0.23 (10)
Shots On Concession Rate0.28 (3)0.27 (2)

Statistics Comment

Wellington look as if they will keep improving and do have some way to get to the top of the stats pile, however, these things can take time to realign and their performances are better than their already superior stats in this match.

Central Coast are not performing at either end of the park and lucky their concession rate is so good.

Prediction

Wellington have rarely been this price at home but should be far too strong. Wellington 3-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Wellington -1 Asian Handicap at 1.80+ for 2 units


Sydney v Adelaide

Match Overview

Sydney showed their championship class last week going down a man and a goal before beating City 2-1. They lose Rhyan Grant to suspension and with Brandon O’Neill still out, they are not quite at full strength, however with the likely movement of Paulo Retre back to right back and Adrian Caceres into midfield they hardly lose much. Perhaps the biggest difference will be less output from the right side. They are still very strong across the park.

Adelaide come into this off back-to-back losses to Western Sydney and Central Coast. They also have to cope with Al Hassan Toure, their most potent attacker, missing due to international duty. Fortunately, they get Riley McGree back which is timely as they have been missing his creative output.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyAdelaide
Games Played1110
Points28 (1)15 (5)
Win9 (1)5 (3)
Draw1 (8)0 (11)
Lost1 (11)5 (3)
Goals Scored26 (1)18 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.9 (8)12.2 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.1 (5)5.3 (3)
Goals Conceded11 (2)16 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)8.8 (2)12.3 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4 (2)5.6 (10)
Clean Sheets2 (3)1 (9)
Over 2.58 (3)9 (2)
Under 2.53 (8)1 (10)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.46 (1)0.34 (3)
Shots On Concession Rate0.25 (1)0.29 (5)

Statistics Comment

Sydney remain the league leaders, they don’t produce huge numbers of total shots but make all of them count by converting at 46%, the long-term average is around 31%. With their quality it is likely they won’t return to the mean which is what sets them apart.

Adelaide have been creating enough but as suggested several times previously have very open matches with 9 of 10 over 2.5 goals.

Prediction

Sydney to bounce back. Sydney 2-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Back Sydney to win 1.7+ for 1.5 units.

 BACK – Back Over 2.5 goals 1.5+ for 1 units.

 BACK – Back Over 3.5 goals 2.2+ for 0.2 units.

Central Coast v Perth

Match Overview

Central Coast managed to get their 3rd win of the season last week proving too strong for Adelaide despite long periods of being under pressure. They face a completely different standard of opposition here but with some confidence may be able to push on for another good result.

Perth keep firing along and will be on the heels of Sydney soon enough. Since getting back to full strength 3 weeks ago they have scored 11-2 winning 3 from 3. They have found their back 3 in Grant, Mrcela and Wuthrich which gives them the perfect platform .

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CCPerth
Games Played910
Points10 (9)15 (4)
Win3 (6)4 (5)
Draw1 (8)3 (1)
Lost5 (1)3 (9)
Goals Scored9 (10)18 (3)
Total Shots For (p/match)8.1 (11)9.5 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.1 (9)5.2 (3)
Goals Conceded14 (5)12 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.8 (11)7.6 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)6.3 (11)3.5 (1)
Clean Sheets1 (9)2 (2)
Over 2.55 (6)5 (6)
Under 2.54 (6)5 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.24 (8)0.35 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.25 (1)0.34 (9)

Statistics Comment

Central Coast stats still don’t appear to suggest they have much to offer. They at least get home on their attitude and effort. Their best stat is the fact they concede at a very low rate.

Typically for Perth they don’t create large amounts of total shots, however, they are always very clinical and their defence is now off the charts good.

Prediction

Perth will power on in an open match. Perth 3-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth to win at 1.7+ for 2 units

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.5+ for 2 units


Sydney v Melbourne City

Match Overview

Sydney came away from Wellington with a point in a high-class match. They were not at their best and do seem to be missing Brandon O’Neil albeit Paulo Retre has been ok in his place. Milos Ninkovic started on the bench last week, but I expect him to be back in the starting 11 this week.

City were not at their best in the Melbourne Derby last week. The Victory did play their best match of the season but there is no escaping the fact that City didn’t perform anywhere near their best.

I expect they will improve here but need to against the team who are still the benchmark.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyCity
Games Played1010
Points25 (1)19 (2)
Win8 (1)6 (2)
Draw1 (8)1 (8)
Lost1 (11)3 (9)
Goals Scored24 (1)21 (2)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.4 (5)12.3 (1)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.2 (3)6.3 (1)
Goals Conceded10 (2)16 (10)
Total Shots Against (p/m)8.5 (2)10.5 (5)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.9 (2)4.8 (5)
Clean Sheets2 (2)2 (2)
Over 2.57 (3)9 (1)
Under 2.53 (8)1 (10)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.46 (1)0.19 (10)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (2)0.33 (7)

Statistics Comment

Sydney remain solid across all statistics and their matches have been open with 7 of 10 over 2.5.

City have seen 9 of their 10 go over 2.5 goals, barring their Round 1 Derby v Victory at Docklands

Prediction

Sydney to bounce back. Sydney 2-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Back Over 2.5 goals 1.7+ for 2 units.


Adelaide v Western Sydney

Match Overview

Adelaide were a little unlucky albeit would have been disappointed not to beat the Mariners away last week. They created enough chances but were ultimately unable to turn those half chances into clear cut chances. They are missing Riley McGree and their hopes of winning are likely enhanced if George Blackwood comes straight back in as he has been one of their best creatively. Paul Izzo also will come straight back in to add quality from goals.

Western Sydney picked up their first point in 6 matches last week after winning 3 and drawing 1 of their first 4 matches to start the season. It was an improved effort last week, yet they still have a long way to go to get back to that early-season potential.

One of the determining factors of this match could be the heat, with expected conditions in the mid-30s at kick-off time. This often slows the match down and so it wouldn’t surprise me if this match takes a little while to get going.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideWSW
Games Played910
Points15 (4)11 (8)
Win5 (3)3 (6)
Draw0 (11)2 (4)
Lost4 (6)5 (1)
Goals Scored16 (4)10 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.1 (2)9.6 (8)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.1 (5)4 (10)
Goals Conceded13 (4)14 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)12.1 (10)11.6 (9)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.6 (10)5.3 (9)
Clean Sheets1 (9)2 (2)
Over 2.58 (2)5 (6)
Under 2.51 (10)5 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.35 (2)0.25 (7)

Statistics Comment

As I have commented many times, Adelaide attack from all over the field which does leave them exposed. Hence 8 of 9 matches this season have been over 2.5 goals.

Both teams have low concession rates, fortunate given they are in the bottom 3 for chances conceded.

Prediction

Other than the heat factor this would look to be a very open match. Adelaide 2-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.60+ for 1.5 units.

 BACK – Adelaide to win at 1.9+ for 1.5 units

Central Coast v Adelaide

Match Overview

Central Coast had a couple of good chances to come away from Sydney with a draw last week albeit Sydney were the dominant team. Their season has been stop-start with a couple of nice wins over Western United and Perth interspersed with some very poor results. One of those when they were destroyed by Adelaide in Round 6.

Adelaide come into this off the bye and per above will have no fears of travelling to a venue they racked up 26 shots and 12 on target just 4 games ago. They sit comfortably inside the top 6 and do look as if they will be there abouts for the season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)PerthWSW
Games Played88
Points9 (7)10 (5)
Win2 (7)3 (5)
Draw3 (1)1 (5)
Lost3 (7)4 (2)
Goals Scored10 (6)9 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.2 (8)8.7 (10)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.8 (6)4.1 (10)
Goals Conceded10 (3)11 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)7.2 (1)12 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.4 (1)5.6 (8)
Clean Sheets0 (10)2 (2)
Over 2.54 (7)5 (5)
Under 2.54 (2)4 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.26 (7)0.27 (6)
Shots On Concession Rate0.37 (10)0.24 (1)

Statistics Comment

Central Coast struggle to create any chances and give up far too many. Obviously a poor recipe for success!
Adelaide matches have been very open with 7 of 8 over 2.5 and 3 of 8 over 3.5 goals.

They will need to tighten up at the back but are lethal going forward

Prediction

Adelaide to win comfortably in an open match. Adelaide 3-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Adelaide to win at 1.8+ for 2 units

 BACK – Over 3.5 goals at 2.4+ for 1 unit


Wellington v Sydney

Match Overview

Wellington have been in good form winning 3 in a row before the 0-0 draw at Victory last week. They would probably have left Melbourne disappointed not to get the full 3 points after spending the last 30 minutes playing against 10-men. Alex Rufer returns to a squad that is missing only Louis Fenton who has been sidelined for the season.

Sydney were somewhat complacent last week after going ahead in the 5th minute, eventually beating Central Coast 1-0. They could easily have been punished for not pushing harder with the Mariners having good chances at the end of each half. Still they did enough to be 8 wins from 9 for the season. They also received the good new that Milos Ninkovic will be staying around after a big offer from next seasons new boys Macarthur FC.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WellingtonSydney
Games Played99
Points11 (6)24 (1)
Win3 (5)8 (1)
Draw2 (3)0 (10)
Lost4 (5)1 (11)
Goals Scored11 (6)22 (1)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.6 (6)11.1 (4)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.7 (6)5.6 (3)
Goals Conceded12 (5)8 (2)
Total Shots Against (p/m)11.5 (8)8.6 (2)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.2 (8)3.9 (2)
Clean Sheets1 (9)2 (2)
Over 2.56 (3)6 (3)
Under 2.53 (8)3 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.26 (7)0.44 (1)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (5)0.23 (1)

Statistics Comment

Sydney are very strong across the park, clinical up-front with the best Shots On Conversion and strong at the back with the best Shots on Concession.

Wellington have been quietly moving along doing well. Their stats are that of a mid-table team which is where they find themselves.

Prediction

Sydney appear to have a few too many big guns for Wellington to cope with. Sydney 2-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney to win at 1.8+ for 2 units


Melbourne City v Melbourne Victory

Match Overview

City stubbed their toe two games ago losing 0-3 at home to Perth. They then bounced right back to thump Newcastle 4-0. They bossed Victory in the 0-0 derby to start the season. Besides the absurd loss to Brisbane in Round 6 and the aforementioned loss to Perth have been dominating teams.

Victory have been very poor albeit there was some signs of life last week in the 0-0 draw with Wellington. The pressure will be relentless on coach Marco Kurz if they lose this derby. The question is are the players capable of turning it around and I have strong doubts.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CityVictory
Games Played910
Points19 (2)9 (8)
Win6 (2)2 (8)
Draw1 (6)3 (1)
Lost2 (10)5 (1)
Goals Scored20 (2)9 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.9 (1)8.8 (10)
Shots on Target For (p/m)6.7 (1)2.9 (11)
Goals Conceded14 (8)14 (8)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.3 (5)9.5 (4)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.7 (5)4.3 (4)
Clean Sheets2 (2)4 (1)
Over 2.58 (1)5 (5)
Under 2.51 (10)5 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.33 (3)0.31 (4)
Shots On Concession Rate0.33 (7)0.33 (7)

Statistics Comment

City Games have rained goals this season. Derbies have been rocks or diamonds for Over 2.5 goal punters since their inception. 21 of the 29 matches have resulted in over 2.5 and amongst the 8 under 2.5 results there has been 4 goalless matches.

Victory are struggling to create but should get a few chances in this match.

Prediction

City to be too strong. City 3-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – City to win at 1.7+ for 2 units

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.5+ for 1 unit

Brisbane Roar v Western United

Match Overview

Brisbane were as a bad as the result suggests in losing 1-5 at Sydney last week. To be fair they weren’t the first and won’t be the last team completely outclassed by the Sky Blues.

They return home but are finding the colossus Suncorp Stadium with low crowds hardly an intimidating atmosphere. They are full strength and will be looking for a sharp turnaround still their only 2 wins have been against Central Coast and a miracle turnaround aided by 2 penalties against City

Western United were far too strong for Melbourne Victory last week in Geelong winning 3-1. Striker Scott McDonald returns to give them more potency and they are at all but full strength. Besart Berisha has started to fire again and they look quite strong through midfield.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)BrisbaneWST
Games Played89
Points8 (8)13 (4)
Win2 (7)4 (4)
Draw2 (2)1 (5)
Lost4 (2)4 (2)
Goals Scored9 (7)11 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.8 (6)11.9 (3)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.8 (6)4.8 (6)
Goals Conceded13 (9)11 (4)
Total Shots Against (p/m)11 (7)9.7 (5)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.1 (7)4.6 (5)
Clean Sheets2 (2)1 (5)
Over 2.53 (10)4 (7)
Under 2.55 (1)4 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.24 (9)0.26 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.32 (7)0.27 (6)

Statistics Comment

Western United edge most statistics when aligning this pair I expect they slight advantage to stretch to a more discernible difference as the season progresses.

Prediction

Western United to pick up the win and cement themselves in the top 6. Western United 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Western United to win at 2.2+ for 2 units


Sydney FC v Central Coast

Match Overview

Sydney romped to a 5-1 win at home to Brisbane last week. The result was not flattering at all, though to be fair they were playing witches hats for the last half hour at least. Scarily for the rest of the league, Trent Buhagir came back to show his potential and Adrian Caceres had one of, if not his best, cameo off the bench.

In other words, they are getting stronger. Caceres may start this match in place of the injured Brandon O’Neil so no real loss there.

Central Coast has been going ok but yet find themselves once again holding up the table. To be fair behind Sydney it is a very compressed table with 9 points separating 2nd and 11th. They miss only young striker Jordan Murray but they do look as if they will be up against it here.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyCC
Games Played87
Points21 (1)7 (11)
Win7 (1)2 (7)
Draw0 (10)1 (5)
Lost1 (11)4 (2)
Goals Scored21 (1)7 (11)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.4 (1)8.3 (11)
Shots on Target For (p/m)6 (2)4.3 (9)
Goals Conceded8 (1)12 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)8.6 (2)15.3 (11)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4 (2)7.1 (11)
Clean Sheets1 (5)1 (5)
Over 2.56 (3)4 (7)
Under 2.52 (8)3 (7)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.44 (1)0.23 (10)
Shots On Concession Rate0.25 (4)0.24 (1)

Statistics Comment

The stats reflect the superiority Sydney have displayed this season. They continue to be ruthless in front of goal and are creating the most chances in the competition.

Central Coast has an appalling shots on target against total, but have been saved by the fact that they have the best concession rate.

Sydney have led 4 of their 7 wins this season at HT and did so in 6 of 10 last season.

Prediction

Nothing for granted but Sydney look far too strong here. Sydney 3-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney -1.5 in the Asian Handicap market at 1.8+ for 2 units

 BACK – Sydney/Sydney HT/FT double at 1.7+ for 1 unit


Perth v Western Sydney

Match Overview

Perth blasted back to winning ways last week easily dispatching Melbourne City 3-0 in Melbourne. It wasn’t necessarily a return to form as they had been playing very well anyway.

I expect they will now rocket up the table. Alex Grant has made them much stronger in defence and they now look rock solid through the defensive midfield and defensive spine.

The early season optimism and form has certainly dropped away for the Wanderers. They have a reasonable squad but they are mostly underperforming and as I have noted previously they still seem to be trying to find their best 11.

I expect another couple of poor results and we will likely see some changes to the coaching staff.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)PerthWSW
Games Played88
Points9 (7)10 (5)
Win2 (7)3 (5)
Draw3 (1)1 (5)
Lost3 (7)4 (2)
Goals Scored10 (6)9 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.2 (8)8.7 (10)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.8 (6)4.1 (10)
Goals Conceded10 (3)11 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)7.2 (1)12 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.4 (1)5.6 (8)
Clean Sheets0 (10)2 (2)
Over 2.54 (7)5 (5)
Under 2.54 (2)4 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.26 (7)0.27 (6)
Shots On Concession Rate0.37 (10)0.24 (1)

Statistics Comment

Perth had similarly low attacking output numbers last year but were saved by their conversion rate. Both need to improve again for them to challenge Sydney but the signs are there after scoring with their only 3 shots on target last week.

They continue to have the meanest defence but have suffered by an above-average concession rate. This won’t continue.

Western Sydney are not creating enough and are conceding too much. Their play through midfield is ok so it is hard to see where they find the turnaround.

In a season with lot’s of Over 2.5 goals results these 2 are not in the same bracket.

Prediction

Perth will be too strong and it could be curtains for Markus Babbel. Perth 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth -0.75 in the Asian Handicap market at 1.8+ for 2 units

Western United v Melbourne Victory

Match Overview

Western United have slipped from their decent start with 3 losses and 0 goals in their last 3 matches. They haven’t been playing poorly and Coach Mark Rudan seems to be still looking for his best 11 particularly in the attacking zone.

Despite their win last week Victory was really not much better than their poor early season form but got out of jail thanks to some magic from their very strong front 3. This, of course, can continue but it is difficult to rely on moments of magic to paper over the obvious flaws, particularly their lack of creativity.

It will be interesting to see if that win does sharpen them up and provide some much-needed confidence.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSTVictory
Games Played88
Points10 (4)8 (6)
Win3 (4)2 (6)
Draw1 (5)2 (2)
Lost4 (1)4 (1)
Goals Scored8 (5)8 (5)
Total Shots For (p/match)11.9 (3)8 (11)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.8 (7)2.8 (11)
Goals Conceded5 (1)11 (8)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.3 (4)9.6 (5)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (4)4.5 (5)
Clean Sheets1 (5)3 (1)
Over 2.53 (8)4 (5)
Under 2.54 (2)4 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.21 (9)0.36 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.29 (7)0.31 (8)

Statistics Comment

Western United are doing ok for a new team. Their defence has been strong but per above their attacking output has dropped over recent weeks.

Victory is lucky to be where they are and even luckier to have managed 3 clean sheets thus far as they have been the inferior team in most matches.

Prediction

This could be a very tight match on a pitch not particularly conducive to good football. Western United 1-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Under 2.5 goals at 2.0+ for 2 units


Sydney FC v Brisbane Roar

Match Overview

Sydney continue to role on after easing to another win 2-0 away to Western United last week. They could easily have been 7 wins from 7 with their only loss in the Sydney derby very much against the overall flow of the match. They are at full strength and are clearly the team to beat on exposed form so far.

Brisbane are still on the improve and a few goals in recent weeks (7 in 3) has pushed them up the table and into the top 6 on goal difference. They have picked up just the 2 draws from 4 away matches so far. They are also at full strength.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyBrisbane
Games Played77
Points18 (1)8 (6)
Win6 (1)2 (6)
Draw0 (10)2 (2)
Lost1 (10)3 (5)
Goals Scored16 (1)8 (5)
Total Shots For (p/match)11.9 (3)10.4 (6)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.7 (3)4.6 (8)
Goals Conceded7 (2)8 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)7.9 (2)10 (7)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.7 (2)4.7 (7)
Clean Sheets1 (5)2 (2)
Over 2.55 (3)2 (10)
Under 2.52 (8)5 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.4 (1)0.25 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (6)0.24 (2)

Statistics Comment

Surprising that Sydney only have the 1 clean sheet for the season as they have been defending well as a team. They have been clinical in attack with clearly the best shots on conversion thanks in most part to the quality of the chances they are creating.

Brisbane have recorded 5 under 2.5 goal results however they have been more potent in their last 3 so I am expecting that to rise in coming weeks.

Prediction

Sydney looks as if they will be too strong. Sydney 2-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney -1 in the Asian Handicap market at 1.8+ for 2 units

Adelaide v Wellington

Match Overview

Adelaide have won 4 straight after losing to Sydney and City in their first 2 matches. Sydney (2nd) and City (1st) are the clear benchmarks so far with Adelaide now comfortably right behind them. We also must remember that they came back from 2 down against Sydney before a red card stalled their comeback.

They also dominated City for long periods after going behind early. They are nearly at full strength and Ben Halloran will improve an already sharp attack.

I like what Ufuk Talay is doing with a young Wellington team, but unfortunately, they still are finding ways to come up a little short, particularly against the better teams. They will grow in confidence after a deserved first win of the season last week.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideWellington
Games Played66
Points12 (3)4 (11)
Win4 (3)1 (7)
Draw0 (10)1 (5)
Lost2 (6)4 (1)
Goals Scored12 (3)7 (6)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.9 (3)9.8 (6)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.7 (2)4.3 (7)
Goals Conceded8 (4)10 (8)
Total Shots Against (p/m)11.1 (8)14 (9)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.2 (8)6.5 (9)
Clean Sheets1 (3)0 (9)
Over 2.55 (2)4 (4)
Under 2.51 (9)2 (7)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.35 (3)0.27 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (3)0.26 (3)

Statistics Comment

I noted last week Adelaide have set their stall out to attack first and defend later. So far 5 of 6 matches have seen over 2.5 goals and 3 of 6 over 3.5 goals.

Wellington have also had plenty of high scoring matches with 4 of 6 over 2.5 and whilst just 1 has seen over 3.5 goals last season 12 of 27 matches had over 3.5 goals.

Prediction

Expecting Adelaide to be too strong in a likely very open match. Adelaide 3-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 at 1.5+ for 2 units

 BACK – Over 3.5 at 2.2+ for 2 units


Melbourne Victory v Perth Glory

Match Overview

Been consistently saying that Victory is but a shadow of their former selves and was easily beaten by archrival Adelaide last week. Coach Marco Kurz had plenty to say after the game and whilst he was right, they certainly can’t be blaming the referees for the current situation. Interestingly Marco Kurz started life at Adelaide in a similar fashion gaining just 5 points from their first 6 matches.

However, my notes and the statistics on those matches were that they were unlucky and suffering from a lack of finishing. Here they are suffering from a lack of creativity and I am struggling to see a turnaround like he pulled off 2 years ago where Adelaide improved to finish 5th.

Perth has also had a very slow start and having picked up just the 1 point from 3 home games. Importantly they get Alex Grant back for this match and he will likely slot straight back into a back 3.

Perhaps the biggest bonus for the Victory is they get to return to Aami Park. Marvel Stadium is basically unplayable early in the season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)VictoryPerth
Games Played76
Points5 (8)6 (7)
Win1 (7)1 (7)
Draw2 (2)3 (1)
Lost4 (1)2 (6)
Goals Scored7 (6)7 (6)
Total Shots For (p/match)8.5 (10)9.3 (8)
Shots on Target For (p/m)2.7 (11)5.2 (4)
Goals Conceded11 (10)9 (7)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.9 (5)7.9 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.6 (5)3.7 (1)
Clean Sheets2 (1)0 (9)
Over 2.54 (4)3 (8)
Under 2.53 (2)3 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.37 (2)0.23 (8)
Shots On Concession Rate0.34 (8)0.41 (11)

Statistics Comment

Lack of creativity from both teams and despite fair defensive stats, particularly for Perth they have been conceding at too high a rate. Often this type of stat reverts to the mean and thus teams are eventually rewarded with low goals conceded tallies.

Prediction

I expect this to be a tight game. Both teams need a win but will be desperate to tighten up and not lose. Perth 1-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Under 2.5 goals at 2.0+ for 2 units

 BACK – Perth to win at 2.0+ for 1 unit

Western Sydney v Melbourne City

Match Overview

Western Sydney come into this off the bye and had tapered off their early season form with disappointing efforts in both the home draw to Brisbane and the away defeat to Western United. The bye week has enabled some key squad players, Bruce Kamau, Matt Jurman and Tarek Elrich to return from injury though it is not clear how much part they will take.

City continue to perform brilliantly well despite the loss to Brisbane last week. There was nothing wrong with that performance despite the frustration of leading 2-0 and 3-1. They will sharpen up considerably this week and I expect they will again be hard to beat.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSWCity
Games Played56
Points10 (3)13 (1)
Win3 (3)4 (1)
Draw1 (5)1 (5)
Lost1 (8)1 (8)
Goals Scored6 (5)13 (1)
Total Shots For (p/match)7.8 (11)13.5 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)3.8 (10)7.2 (1)
Goals Conceded6 (3)9 (9)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.9 (8)9.3 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.6 (8)4.3 (3)
Clean Sheets2 (1)1 (3)
Over 2.53 (5)5 (1)
Under 2.53 (2)1 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.32 (3)0.3 (5)
Shots On Concession Rate0.26 (4)0.35 (9)

Statistics Comment

Western Sydney despite some good early season results have perhaps been over-performing when we consider their statistics. That said a lot of their play has been very good so at times the stats are not the entire picture.

City games have been extremely open as their over 2.5 total attests to. They are the benchmark in attack right now and very solid in defence.

Prediction

Despite the high stakes I expect an open match. City 2-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.5+ for 2 units

 BACK – City to win at 2.1+ for 1 unit


Adelaide v Melbourne Victory

Match Overview

Adelaide went behind early to the Mariners before winning comfortably 3-1. Al Hassan Toure should go straight back into the starting line-up after scoring his first goals for Australia on Under 23 duty last week. Their games have been roller coasters and high scoring which could make for interesting viewing.

Victory is nearing a return to full strength, they missed 4 players to International duty last week and also regain Andrew Nabbout to the squad, although I have serious doubts to whether he will be ready to go.

The problem for Victory this season has been the relatively poor performance of their imports, particularly Jakob Poulsen and Kristijan Dobras. They need to improve their creativity as a team to rectify their very poor start.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideVictory
Games Played56
Points9 (5)5 (7)
Win3 (3)1 (6)
Draw0 (10)2 (2)
Lost2 (4)3 (2)
Goals Scored9 (3)6 (5)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.8 (3)8.8 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.6 (3)2.8 (11)
Goals Conceded7 (7)6 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)12.5 (9)9.3 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.8 (9)4.3 (3)
Clean Sheets1 (3)2 (1)
Over 2.54 (2)3 (5)
Under 2.51 (8)3 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.32 (3)0.35 (2)
Shots On Concession Rate0.24 (3)0.23 (2)

Statistics Comment

Adelaide seemingly have focused most their attention on all out attack which leaves them vulnerable at the back, as the stats display.

Victory have produced nothing in attack. Obviously still only 6 matches in but there has not been a team in the last 4 seasons to finish at a rate below 3 shots on target per match.

Prediction

Adelaide should prove too strong. Expecting Victory to improve soon but other than some players returning this doesn’t seem the obvious starting point. Adelaide 2-1.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Adelaide to win at 1.7+ for 1.5 units

Sydney FC v Melbourne Victory

Match Overview

Sydney come into this off the bye and importantly were able to get the match re-arranged to allow time for their Australian international players to return from the Socceroos 1-0 win over Jordan Friday morning. Rhyan Grant played a full match there and so may be in some doubt although his fitness should carry him through. Other than that Sydney will be at full strength.

Victory don’t have the luxury of being able to wait for their non-Australian international players. Missing from their perceived strongest 11 prior to the season commencing would be 3 defenders Storm Roux, Thomas Deng and Tim Hoogland.

They are also with out a pair of definite attacking starters in Elvis Kamsoba and Andrew Nabbout. The loss of these players along with a reasonably poor start to the season suggest they will battle here. But it is a ‘Big Blue’ and they will be hurting from their semi-final 1-6 capitulation at Jubilee stadium last season.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)SydneyVictory
Games Played45
Points9 (4)5 (7)
Win3 (2)1 (6)
Draw0 (10)2 (2)
Lost1 (7)2 (2)
Goals Scored9 (2)5 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)13.7 (4)12.3 (7)
Shots on Target For (p/m)6.3 (4)4 (11)
Goals Conceded5 (3)6 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)9.2 (1)11.4 (5)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.3 (1)5.3 (5)
Clean Sheets0 (7)2 (1)
Over 2.53 (2)2 (8)
Under 2.51 (8)3 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.36 (2)0.31 (4)
Shots On Concession Rate0.29 (7)0.29 (7)

Statistics Comment

Sydney are steadily building a similar set of stats to their Championship winning season last year. Despite no clean sheets their defence is once again laying the platform for a very strong attack.

Victory again are quite similar to last year although they are down on conversion rate and up on concession rate which is a concern.

Prediction

On first glance Sydney may look too short in a big rivalry match however, the patchwork Victory team do look up against it. Sydney 2-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Sydney -1 in the Asian Handicap market at 1.7+ for 2 units (max bet 3 units)


Central Coast v Adelaide

Match Overview

Central Coast have started the season quite well with their loss to ladder leaders City last week the only game they were outplayed. The win against Perth the week before was a surprise, but in the end fully deserved. Kye Rowles and Daniel De Silva are big outs having both played most of the 4 matches to date.

Adelaide got the win over Brisbane last week in a game of limited quality. Their season is ticking along ok having recovered from losing their first 2 matches to win their last 2. I do have to question the quality of those wins against Newcastle and Brisbane who combined are yet to win from 8 attempts.

They lose Al Hassan Toure for this match and will rely on Kristian Opseth up front who has yet to really get going albeit with limited opportunities.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)CCAdelaide
Games Played44
Points4 (8)6 (5)
Win1 (6)2 (5)
Draw1 (5)0 (10)
Lost2 (2)2 (2)
Goals Scored5 (7)6 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)10.7 (10)15 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.3 (6)5.3 (6)
Goals Conceded7 (9)6 (6)
Total Shots Against (p/m)18.9 (10)16.7 (9)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)8.7 (10)7.7 (9)
Clean Sheets0 (7)1 (3)
Over 2.53 (2)3 (2)
Under 2.51 (8)1 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (4)0.38 (1)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (4)0.26 (3)

Statistics Comment

Central Coast have not improved statistically since last season but there is little doubt they are a much better team particularly considering a tough early season draw including away trips to WSW, Perth, City.

Adelaide defensively are a shadow of where they were yet have improved their attack, particularly their finishing.

Prediction

Expecting an open match with neither team strong defensively. Central Coast 3-2

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.5+ for 2 units (max bet 3 units)

 BACK – Over 3.5 goals at 2.4+ for 1 unit

 BACK – Central Coast to win at 3.0+ for 1 unit


Western United v Newcastle

Match Overview

Western United have started their A-League lives very strongly winning 3 of 5 matches, losing only to City and turning in some superb displays. Alesandro Diamanti has taken no time to settle in, not something all big-name foreigners can attest to. He has plenty of allies in a team that look sure to contest right to the end of the season.

Newcastle were ok in getting a point at home to Perth last week. It was an improvement, however Perth were really poor for long parts of that match despite dominating possession. I’m still not convinced of Newcastle despite the improved performance last week.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)WSTNewcastle
Games Played54
Points10 (2)2 (9)
Win3 (2)0 (9)
Draw1 (5)2 (2)
Lost1 (7)2 (2)
Goals Scored8 (3)4 (10)
Total Shots For (p/match)13.5 (5)13 (6)
Shots on Target For (p/m)6.5 (3)7 (2)
Goals Conceded5 (3)8 (10)
Total Shots Against (p/m)11.4 (5)13.8 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5.3 (5)6.3 (8)
Clean Sheets1 (3)0 (7)
Over 2.53 (2)2 (8)
Under 2.52 (4)2 (4)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.31 (4)0.19 (10)
Shots On Concession Rate0.29 (7)0.42 (11)

Statistics Comment

Not much to suggest Newcastle are going to be able to improve on their 7th from last season. Their shots on conversion is down from 31% to 19% and their shots on concession is up from 26% to 42%.

Nothing to compare year on year for Western United but they are building a nice set of stats particularly given I expect they will likely continue to improve.

Prediction

The market looks to be quite generous with Western United. I would expect them to be odds on by kick-off. Western United 2-0

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Western United to win at 1.7+ for 3 units (max bet 3 units)

Adelaide v Brisbane

Match Overview

Adelaide had the week off last week so will come into this fresh. Once we start to understand the impact of the bye week it will be interesting to see how it plays out. They have started the season playing well but have still just the 1 win to their name.

Brisbane have been rock solid defensively and last week just about deserved to beat Western Sydney. They play a reasonably simple 4-4-2 structure which gives them the solidity. They have a fully fit squad. They will be an interesting watch when or if they start to score

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideBrisbane
Points3 (8)2 (9)
Win1 (5)0 (9)
Draw0 (9)2 (1)
Lost2 (2)1 (5)
Goals Scored5 (4)1 (11)
Total Shots For (p/match)10 (5)11.3 (3)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4 (8)4.3 (6)
Goals Conceded6 (9)2 (1)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.3 (10)6 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)6.7 (10)3 (1)
Clean Sheets0 (6)1 (3)
Over 2.53 (1)0 (11)
Under 2.50 (11)3 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.17 (3)0.03 (11)
Shots On Concession Rate0.3 (9)0.22 (2)

Statistics Comment

Interesting dynamic at play in this match. Adelaide matches have been high scoring, Brisbane low scoring. We can see from the stats that defensively Brisbane are clearly the strongest performers so far. Adelaide, on the other hand, have been riding their luck. Brisbane need to find a goal scorer.

Prediction

Leaning to Brisbane as value to pinch something, if not win the match. Brisbane 1-0.

Betting Strategy

 LAY – Adelaide at $2.20 or less for a risk of 2 units


Newcastle v Perth

Match Overview

Newcastle have been very poor to start to the season. There is no escaping that fact. Worse still, they just don’t seem to be up for the fight. It wouldn’t surprise me to find out in due course that there are difficulties in the club. I hope I am wrong. They are full strength here and can only improve off the dismal effort when losing 1-4 to Sydney FC last week, at least hard to see how they can get worse.

Perth have yet to fire this season. Losing at home to the Mariners last week was certainly a surprise. They lose Osama Malik but regain Tomislav Mrcela to their squad with perhaps Dino Djulbic starting at centre back in place of Osama Malik.

Key Statistics

2019/20 Statistics (ranking)NewcastlePerth
Points1 (10)5 (3)
Win0 (9)1 (5)
Draw1 (3)2 (1)
Lost2 (2)1 (5)
Goals Scored3 (10)5 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)9.7 (7)9 (8)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.7 (3)5.3 (4)
Goals Conceded7 (8)5 (5)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10 (8)7 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5 (7)3.5 (3)
Clean Sheets0 (6)0 (6)
Over 2.52 (5)2 (5)
Under 2.51 (6)2 (2)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.1 (9)0.14 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.47 (7)0.36 (6)

Statistics Comment

Last year Perth were very reliant on an excessive conversion rate (36%) off a reasonably low output. The output has held much the same, but the conversion rate has dropped. Newcastle have regressed in just about every stat. Their conversion and concession rates leading to their troubles.

Prediction

After a very disappointing result, I expect Perth to turn it around here. Perth 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth to win at $1.90+ for 2 units

Perth Glory v Central Coast Mariners

Match Overview

Perth showed their class last week overcoming a determined Wellington team 2-1. They have managed 5 points from 3 matches to sit 4th. I expect them to hold or improve on that position throughout the season

Central Coast have been ok in their first 2 matches and come into this off the bye. They will be competitive yet realistically their lack of results suggests they will still struggle here with a team far below the level of Perth.

Key Statistics

Next week we move to this year’s stats blended with last year’s.

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)PerthMariners
Points60 (1)13 (10)
Win18 (1)3 (10)
Draw6 (4)4 (9)
Lost3 (1)20 (10)
Goals Scored56 (1)31 (10)
Total Shots For (p/match)14.1 (4)10.8 (10)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.8 (1)3.7 (10)
Goals Conceded23 (1)70 (9)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.2 (2)16 (8)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.1 (1)6.3 (9)
Clean Sheets12 (1)1 (10)
Over 2.514 (6)18 (2)
Under 2.513 (4)9 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.36 (3)0.31 (8)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (4)0.41 (9)

Statistics Comment

Despite improved performances, Central Coast have picked up the 1 point form a possible 6. Their stats aren’t particularly improving whereas Perth are still doing well.

Prediction

Perth will show their strength here. Likely to be pretty comfortable. Perth 2-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth -1.25 at 1.8+ for 2 units


Western Sydney Wanderers v Brisbane Roar

Match Overview

Western Sydney won their first derby in ions last weekend and as I predicted in the season preview, they are flying high and with such an intimidating home atmosphere they will be hard to stop.

All of that said, they were lucky to win last week in a game dominated by Sydney FC. Still win they did, and It will continue.

Brisbane have been ok in their first 2 matches picking up a point in round 1 against Perth and a narrow 0-1 loss to Victory last week.

Brisbane will win their share of games but I suspect by season end this will be the hardest ground in the league to win at.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)WSWBrisbane
Points24 (8)18 (9)
Win6 (8)4 (9)
Draw6 (4)6 (4)
Lost15 (8)17 (9)
Goals Scored42 (5)38 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)15.5 (2)12.1 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.1 (2)4.2 (9)
Goals Conceded54 (8)71 (10)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.6 (6)17 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5 (6)6.3 (9)
Clean Sheets4 (7)3 (9)
Over 2.518 (2)21 (1)
Under 2.59 (8)6 (10)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.3 (9)0.34 (4)
Shots On Concession Rate0.4 (8)0.42 (10)

Statistics Comment

These two teams are looking to improve this season. Point is WSW have done so already. WSW attack last year was immense with no finishing. They will kick on

Prediction

I expect an open good match. Western Sydney 3-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Western Sydney at 1.9+ for 2 units

 BACK – Over 2.5 goals at 1.7+ for 2 units

Brisbane v Victory

Match Overview

Brisbane are the first team to come off the bye this year and it will be interesting to see how that dynamic plays out. They equalised in the last few seconds away to Perth in round 1, nothing more than deserved after a very good performance. They played a reasonably simple 4-4-2 structure in that first round but expect they will be more adventurous in their first home match.

Victory have been poor in both matches to start the season. I noted in the season preview that it was a risk for them to start slowly with new coach Marko Kurz taking over. They have yet to produce any real class and their defence is very shaky. Hard to see exactly where they turn it around as new imports Jakob Poulsen and Kristijan Dobras are certainly yet to settle in.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)VictoryBrisbane
Points50 (3)18 (9)
Win15 (3)4 (9)
Draw5 (7)6 (4)
Lost7 (2)17 (9)
Goals Scored50 (2)38 (8)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.3 (8)12.1 (9)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.9 (4)4.2 (9)
Goals Conceded32 (3)71 (10)
Total Shots Against (p/m)14.5 (7)17 (10)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (5)6.3 (9)
Clean Sheets6 (5)3 (9)
Over 2.516 (4)21 (1)
Under 2.511 (6)9 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.38 (1)0.3 (9)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (2)0.4 (8)

Statistics Comment

We are yet to determine the trend for Brisbane, but I expect these stats from last season to look vastly different for 19/20. Victory though are now really struggling they have just a penalty to show for their attack after producing just 4 shots on target in total season to date with no conversion.

Prediction

The market has made a correction to the Victory stat to the season however I expect it to get worse before it gets better, if it does. Brisbane 1-0.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Brisbane at 2.5+ for a risk of 2 units (max bet 3 units)


Western Sydney v Sydney

Match Overview

What an event this shapes up to be. Wanderland is a sell-out and this pair of teams are the only pair to go 2 wins from 2 matches to start the season. I for one am counting the days/hours till kick off.

The fact this is the first genuine Wanderers home match v Sydney since January 2016 and we are in a new era where active support, including a safe standing section, is once again being promoted. Giddy!

Western Sydney were ok round 1 against Central Coast but then in large patches played the Victory off the park last week before claiming a 2-1 win. In truth Victory were poor but that shouldn’t mask the fact that the Wanderers are building very nicely. Their young guns all did well last week headlined as I predicted by the influence of Keanu Baccus. Alexander Meier also looks to be total class and with a moderate Sydney defence they might have some fun.

Sydney have been good, not great so far. They are playing such an attack minded game that their defence is becoming exposed far too often. What a star Rhyan Grant has become. He has a great motor and his attacking raids are difficult to stop, not to mention his sublime finish from last week.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)WSWSydney
Points24 (8)52 (2)
Win6 (8)16 (2)
Draw6 (4)4 (9)
Lost15 (8)7 (2)
Goals Scored42 (5)43 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)15.5 (2)13.9 (5)
Shots on Target For (p/m)5.1 (2)5.1 (3)
Goals Conceded54 (8)29 (2)
Total Shots Against (p/m)13.6 (6)11 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)5 (6)3.6 (2)
Clean Sheets4 (7)8 (3)
Over 2.518 (2)14 (6)
Under 2.59 (8)13 (4)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.3 (9)0.31 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.4 (8)0.3 (6)

Statistics Comment

Commented last week that Western Sydney’s stats were better than a team finishing 8th and they went on to prove it. Sydney have dominated derby matches winning 11 to 4 with 6 draws. Total goals have been 9 over 2.5 and 12 under

Prediction

Expecting this match to played at an extreme pace. Two very good teams but quite contrasting styles. Wanderers 3-2

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Back over 2.5 goals at 1.7+ for 2 units (max bet 3 units)

Adelaide United v Melbourne City

Match Overview

City were by far the better team in the Melbourne Derby last week. Very unlucky not to win they were their normal rock-solid selves at the back, perhaps more so with the coverage provided in defensive midfield by Josh Brillante.

They created plenty of good chances but lacked the final piece of finishing, which on a terrible surface and without star striker Jamie Maclaren was somewhat understandable. Maclaren returns from Socceroos duty which is a big in and Craig Noone looked like he would be a quality side kick.

Adelaide fought back from 0-2 to 2-2 before the sending off of Ryan Strain halted their progress. There was a lot to like about young striker Hassan Toure, his coolness and combination with Ben Halloran for his goal was exciting and even at his young age he looks ready to step up to a key role.

They too were very solid defensively.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)CityAdelaide
Points40 (5)44 (4)
Win11 (5)12 (4)
Draw7 (2)8 (1)
Lost9 (5)7 (2)
Goals Scored39 (7)37 (9)
Total Shots For (p/match)13.1 (6)14.1 (3)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.4 (8)4.7 (7)
Goals Conceded32 (3)32 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)10.1 (1)12.6 (4)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)3.6 (2)4.2 (4)
Clean Sheets9 (2)8 (3)
Over 2.512 (9)12 (9)
Under 2.515 (1)15 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.33 (5)0.29 (10)
Shots On Concession Rate0.33 (7)0.28 (5)

Prediction

Not much between these teams. Despite both being under teams last season it is important to note that City finished the season with 7/10 over 2.5 once Maclaren joined.

This will be a quality game. I expect City to edge it and despite the quality of both defences can see a few goals scored. City 3-1

Betting Strategy

 BACK – City to win at 2.0+ for 2 units

 BACK – Over 2.5 at 1.9+ for 1 unit


Melbourne Victory v WSW

Match Overview

As expected, left back Adama Traore was an absolute stand out for the Victory last week. Him aside though there were worrying signs. Their creativity was poor, their midfield thin and their central defence laborious. Again, the quality of the pitch didn’t help, as it won’t again here but they are not a team that should be as short as they are.

Western Sydney did enough to see off Central Coast, who themselves were pretty good. Mitchell Duke getting a double was encouraging and the influence of Keanu Baccus continues to grow. Wanderland wasn’t quite back to it’s heaving best, but a few good performances and I expect they can get on a roll.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)VictoryWSW
Points50 (3)24 (8)
Win15 (3)6 (8)
Draw5 (7)6 (4)
Lost7 (2)15 (8)
Goals Scored50 (2)42 (5)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.3 (8)15.5 (2)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.9 (4)5.1 (2)
Goals Conceded32 (3)54 (8)
Total Shots Against (p/m)14.5 (7)13.6 (6)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (5)5 (6)
Clean Sheets6 (5)4 (7)
Over 2.516 (4)18 (2)
Under 2.511 (6)9 (8)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.38 (1)0.3 (9)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (2)0.4 (8)

Statistics Comment

For a team that finished 8th the Wanderers stats were not too bad last season. They only won 3/13 away which was a problem but one that can be turned around. Victory overshot last season on back of their conversion rates.

Victory could have a tough season, whilst the clouds are lifting for Western Sydney. Vic 0 -1

Betting Strategy

 LAY – Victory up to 2.3 for a risk of 2 units

Victory v City

Match Overview

Victory finished 3rd last season on the back of their clinical finishing. They certainly didn’t create enough and will be looking to turn that around this season. I expect returning midfielder Adama Traore to have a big season and the Victory to have another strong year.

City were hamstrung for much of last season having to cope without striker Bruno Fornaroli on the back of a falling out with then-coach Warren Joyce. They improved rapidly on the back of the Jamie Maclaren but he misses this match due to national team duties. With four new visa players they may take time to gel however I expect they will have a strong season.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)VictoryCity
Points50 (3)40 (5)
Win15 (3)11 (5)
Draw5 (7)7 (2)
Lost7 (2)9 (5)
Goals Scored50 (2)39 (7)
Total Shots For (p/match)12.3 (8)13.1 (6)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.9 (4)4.4 (8)
Goals Conceded32 (3)32 (3)
Total Shots Against (p/m)14.5 (7)10.1 (1)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.4 (5)3.6 (2)
Clean Sheets6 (5)9 (2)
Over 2.516 (4)12 (9)
Under 2.511 (6)15 (1)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.38 (1)0.33 (5)
Shots On Concession Rate0.27 (2)0.33 (7)

Statistics Comment

City had the tightest defence last season while Victory, on the back of their conversion rates, were the 2nd-ranked scoring team. The derbies results are reasonably split with Victory winning 12, City 9 and 7 draws. The most interesting stat of the derbies is the fact that 21 of 28 have resulted in over 2.5 goals.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Over 2.5 Goals at 1.7+ for 3 units


Adelaide v Sydney

Match Overview

After a mixed season, Adelaide finished within a game of the Grand Final, losing to Perth on penalties.

Had they a top-class striker over the last few seasons they surely would have done far more. New manager Gerthan Verbeek has looked to Norway and Kristian Opseth to fix the scoring issues. The new striker had a prolific record in Norway before a disappointing return of 1 goal from 12 matches in Turkey so it will be interesting to see how he goes.

Sydney were consistent last season – their first under new coach Steve Corica finishing 2nd on the ladder before winning the championship on penalties in Perth. Their close season transfers have been largely like-for-like and they possess a stack of attacking players at their disposal.

Last year they played with a pair of defensive midfielders, as they did under Graeme Arnold. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them go with just one defensive midfielder which, whilst potentially opening them up defensively, will be a good move.

Key Statistics

2018/19 Statistics (ranking)AdelaideSydney
Points44 (4)52 (2)
Win12 (4)16 (2)
Draw8 (1)4 (9)
Lost7 (2)7 (2)
Goals Scored37 (9)43 (4)
Total Shots For (p/match)14.1 (3)13.9 (5)
Shots on Target For (p/m)4.7 (7)5.1 (3)
Goals Conceded32 (3)29 (2)
Total Shots Against (p/m)12.6 (4)11 (3)
Shots on Target Against (p/m)4.2 (4)3.6 (2)
Clean Sheets8 (3)8 (3)
Over 2.512 (10)14 (6)
Under 2.515 (1)13 (4)
Shots On Conversion Rate0.29 (10)0.31 (7)
Shots On Concession Rate0.28 (5)0.3 (6)

Prediction

Expecting a tight match that Sydney might just shade on the back of their stronger attack.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Under 2.5 goals at 1.9+ for 1 unit

 BACK – Sydney to win at 2.2+ for 1 unit

Adelaide United

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Adelaide
Points44 (4)
Win12 (4)
Draw8 (1)
Loss7 (2)
Goals For37 (9)
Goals Against32 (3)
Total Shots For p/match14.1 (3)
Shots on Target For p/m4.7 (7)
Total Shots Against p/m12.6 (4)
Shots on Target Against p/m4.2 (4)
Clean Sheets8 (3)
Over 2.512 (9)
Under 2.515 (1)
Shots on Target Conversion0.29 (10)
Shots On Target Concession0.28 (5)

Adelaide were incredibly unlucky to go out at the Preliminary Final stage last year after losing on penalties to Perth. They have had an interesting off season with new coach Gertjan Verbeek coming in to replace Victory-bound Marco Kurz.

The Reds struggled for goals for the last three seasons and unless Kristian Opseth can produce, I’m once again querying their premiership potential as they won’t produce enough goals. They also look a little short on defensive options.

Once again bottom half of the top 6 looks to be their maximum finish.

Predicted Finish: 6th


Brisbane Roar

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Brisbane
Points18 (9)
Win4 (9)
Draw6 (4)
Loss17 (9)
Goals For38 (8)
Goals Against71 (10)
Total Shots For p/match12.1 (9)
Shots on Target For p/m4.2 (9)
Total Shots Against p/m17 (10)
Shots on Target Against p/m6.3 (9)
Clean Sheets3 (9)
Over 2.521 (1)
Under 2.56 (10)
Shots on Target Conversion0.34 (4)
Shots On Target Concession0.42 (10)

Brisbane were terrible last season. In hard times, some pray to God and, well, perhaps Robbie “God” Fowler as the manager might be the answer. Certainly in their FFA Cup win over Sydney FC, there was plenty to like about the new look Roar.

With 16 players in and out it will take time to get a feel for them. I’m expecting Aiden O’Neill and Jay O’Shea to have big seasons in the attacking third.

They have to tighten up the defence after setting an A-League record for conceding the most goals in one season. They are the biggest query heading into the competition.

Predicted Finish: 8th


Central Coast Mariners

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)CC
Points13 (10)
Win3 (10)
Draw4 (9)
Loss20 (10)
Goals For31 (10)
Goals Against70 (9)
Total Shots For p/match10.8 (10)
Shots on Target For p/m3.7 (10)
Total Shots Against p/m16 (8)
Shots on Target Against p/m6.3 (9)
Clean Sheets1 (10)
Over 2.518 (2)
Under 2.59 (8)
Shots on Target Conversion0.31 (8)
Shots On Target Concession0.41 (9)

Since the departure of Graham Arnold, the Mariners have finished (10,10,8,10,8). New Coach Alen Stajcic started his caretaker role with an F3 derby win. They certainly were better performed in those last six games of the season but now the real hard work begins.

The Mariners have suffered massive losses in Aiden O’Neill and Matt Millar and they will be heavily reliant on new midfielders Milan Duric and Kim Eun-Sun to drive what looks to be a very average strike force.

Hoping the best but fearing the worst.

Predicted Finish: 11th


Melbourne City

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)City
Points40 (5)
Win11 (5)
Draw7 (2)
Loss9 (5)
Goals For39 (7)
Goals Against32 (3)
Total Shots For p/match13.1 (6)
Shots on Target For p/m4.4 (8)
Total Shots Against p/m10.1 (1)
Shots on Target Against p/m3.6 (2)
Clean Sheets9 (2)
Over 2.512 (9)
Under 2.515 (1)
Shots on Target Conversion0.33 (5)
Shots On Target Concession0.33 (7)

With the City Group scouting network at their disposal, Melbourne City have generally done well in the recruiting of foreigners to the team. They look to do so again with four of their five visa players joining this season.

Coach Erik Mombaerts takes over and he has a very interesting history particularly working with the young French teams in a period when they excelled. The loss of Ritchie De Laet will hurt but aside from that they look to have recruited well.

Jamie Maclaren is their key player as he will need to score the bulk of goals for the team and, having scored five in nine to finish the season, I think he will more than fit the bill. With respect to last season it has to be remembered they spent much of it with no striker given the standoff between then Coach Warren Joyce and Bruno Fornaroli.

Predicted Finish: 3rd


Melbourne Victory

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Victory
Points50 (3)
Win15 (3)
Draw5 (7)
Loss7 (2)
Goals For50 (2)
Goals Against32 (3)
Total Shots For p/match12.3 (8)
Shots on Target For p/m4.9 (4)
Total Shots Against p/m14.5 (7)
Shots on Target Against p/m4.4 (5)
Clean Sheets6 (5)
Over 2.516 (4)
Under 2.511 (6)
Shots on Target Conversion0.38 (1)
Shots On Target Concession0.27 (2)

For the first time in their history, the Victory enter a season without Kevin Muscat as player or coach. Marco Kurz comes across from Adelaide to try and straighten up a Victory team that has really finished strongly in the transfer market.

Returning Adama Traore and Andrew Nabbout could turn out to be the key men, along with Ola Toivanen.

Stats last year were relatively strong bar the fact they were over-reliant on SOT Conversion.

I expect they will be strong again. That said coach Marko Kurz would want the team to find early form as they Victory fans won’t stand for a drop-in intensity. Thankfully I think he is a man that can carry them forward.

Predicted Finish: 5th


Newcastle Jets

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Newcastle
Points35 (7)
Win10 (7)
Draw5 (7)
Loss12 (7)
Goals For40 (6)
Goals Against36 (6)
Total Shots For p/match16.2 (1)
Shots on Target For p/m4.7 (6)
Total Shots Against p/m13.5 (5)
Shots on Target Against p/m5 (7)
Clean Sheets6 (5)
Over 2.513 (8)
Under 2.514 (3)
Shots on Target Conversion0.31 (6)
Shots On Target Concession0.26 (1)

Newcastle fell from 2nd to 7th last season and spent much of the season wasting forward opportunities by not converting their position as the top rank shots per match without converting.

I query Dimi Petratos as the man to convert the possession and as such, they will be reliant on Panamanian striker Abdiel Arroyo to get the goals.

I expect defender Johnny Koutroumbis to have a very strong season and the addition of Matt Millar is big. The Jets are likely to improve, if not compete for the top of the table.

Predicted Finish: 7th


Perth Glory

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Perth
Points60 (1)
Win18 (1)
Draw6 (4)
Loss3 (1)
Goals For56 (1)
Goals Against23 (1)
Total Shots For p/match14.1 (4)
Shots on Target For p/m5.8 (1)
Total Shots Against p/m10.2 (2)
Shots on Target Against p/m3.1 (1)
Clean Sheets12 (1)
Over 2.514 (6)
Under 2.513 (4)
Shots on Target Conversion0.36 (3)
Shots On Target Concession0.27 (4)

In the loss of Keogh, Davidson and Lowry, Perth have lost a big part of their Premiership winning team from last season.

On the flip side, they have added quality headlined by Bruno Fornaroli. I just hope for Perth’s sake that he doesn’t fall foul of the Popovic training regime. I expect a big return for Osama Malik who will add further starch to their defensive midfield position.

Statistically, there’s little to improve on and with a second pre-season under that Popovic fitness regime, we can expect they will be there or thereabouts about again.

Predicted Finish: 1st


Sydney FC

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Sydney
Points52 (2)
Win16 (2)
Draw4 (9)
Loss7 (2)
Goals For43 (4)
Goals Against29 (2)
Total Shots For p/match13.9 (5)
Shots on Target For p/m5.1 (3)
Total Shots Against p/m11 (3)
Shots on Target Against p/m3.6 (2)
Clean Sheets8 (3)
Over 2.514 (6)
Under 2.513 (4)
Shots on Target Conversion0.31 (7)
Shots On Target Concession0.3 (6)

In the first season of the Steve Corica coaching reign, Sydney finished 2nd on the ladder before winning the Grand Final on penalties. Their stats were not great but they had the quality when it mattered.

Their transfers largely leave them as strong as they were last season and with Alex Baumjohann and Kosta Barbarouses coming in they have an attacking midfield that is the envy of the other teams.

I expect they will play a more attacking brand this season, potentially dispensing with the pair of number 8s to be more attack-minded. There’s little doubt they will be towards the top of the ladder come round 29.

Predicted Finish: 2nd


Western Sydney Wanderers

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)WSW
Points24 (8)
Win6 (8)
Draw6 (4)
Loss15 (8)
Goals For42 (5)
Goals Against54 (8)
Total Shots For p/match15.5 (2)
Shots on Target For p/m5.1 (2)
Total Shots Against p/m13.6 (6)
Shots on Target Against p/m5 (6)
Clean Sheets4 (7)
Over 2.518 (2)
Under 2.59 (8)
Shots on Target Conversion0.3 (9)
Shots On Target Concession0.4 (8)

The Wanderers started their life with ladder positions of (1,2,9,2) and in the year they finished 9th they won the Asian Champions League. Subsequently, they have finished (6,7,8). The timeline coincides with not only the loss of Coach Tony Popovic but also the loss of their fortress at Parramatta Stadium.

I expect they will turn Bankwest into a fortress provided they can re-engage with the RBB, and I think they will. Many of their stats last season belied their lowly finish and I expect this to turn around.

Predicted Finish: 4th


Wellington Phoenix

2018/19 Stats (Rank in brackets)Wellington
Points40 (5)
Win11 (5)
Draw7 (2)
Loss9 (5)
Goals For48 (3)
Goals Against43 (7)
Total Shots For p/match13.1 (6)
Shots on Target For p/m4.8 (5)
Total Shots Against p/m16.7 (9)
Shots on Target Against p/m5.9 (8)
Clean Sheets4 (7)
Over 2.516 (4)
Under 2.511 (6)
Shots on Target Conversion0.37 (2)
Shots On Target Concession0.27 (3)

Wellington have introduced Ufuk Talay as the new manager. Josip Skoko described talay as the best player never to play for Australia, and as someone who had his own battles against the man once upon a time, I can say I expect he will make a great success of the management business.

He has assembled a squad of young players to replace the likes of Sarpeet Singh, Roy Krishna and Filip Kurto. I love the idea but just hope he is given time to adapt to such a squad.

With few striking options, David Ball presents as the key man.  I am hoping they do better than I think they will.

Predicted Finish: 9th


Western United

They’re a new team into the competition this season I like the promotion of coach Mark Rudan to A-League level.

They have compiled a squad skewed to attacking strength. Alessandro Diamanti was still reasonably prolific last season for Livorno in the Serie B. He should link well with the likes of Panagiotis Kone, Scott McDonald and Besart Berisha.

Their defence is lacking and I expect Filip Kurto will have to carry them to some extent. Naturally, as a new team, they’re a query but they shouldn’t be the worst.

Predicted Finish: 10th


Betting Strategy

 BACK – Perth Glory to win the A-League


Current Results

Total Units Staked: 139.70

Total Units Returned: 126.24

ROI: -9.64%


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