A-League round nine preview panel



Melbourne City v Perth Glory at AAMI Park, 7.30pm

Head to head: City 7, Glory 13, drawn 9

Last clash: Round 21, 2018-19, 2-2 draw at AAMI Park

Perth head to Melbourne for the second time in as many weeks, languishing at the bottom of the table and in desperate need of a win. Meanwhile, Erick Mombaerts' side are fresh off the bye but will be stinging after seeing Sydney FC overtake them on the table during their week off - and will be out to prove a point.

Key: Bruno Fornaroli. Perth are struggling to score and who better than the former City captain to help turn things around on the scoreboard?

Tip: City


Wellington Phoenix v Western Sydney Wanderers at Eden Park, 5pm

Head to head: Phoenix 7, Wanderers 10, drawn 4

Last clash: Round 22, 2018-19, Phoenix 3-1 at Westpac Stadium

The Wanderers head to Auckland acutely aware they need at the very least a draw, if not all three points, to ease the pressure on boss Markus Babbel. The Phoenix are up and about with two wins on the bounce and will be keen to maintain the rage.

Key: Mitch Duke. The Wanderers are conceding goals but right now they're struggling to score, too. Babbel desperately needs his forwards to step up and that includes his captain.

Tip: Phoenix

Sydney FC v Brisbane Roar at Jubilee Stadium, 7.30pm

Head to head: Sydney 14, Brisbane 15, drawn 13

Last clash: Round 23, 2018-19, Sydney FC 3-1 at Suncorp Stadium

The Roar are fresh off a good win against the Mariners but face a far sterner task when they travel to Kogarah. The Sky Blues have won four games straight and are in imposing form, with Adam Le Fondre scoring at will.

Key: Tom Aldred. Stopping Sydney FC's array of attacking threats is no easy matter and if the Roar are to have any chance, their skipper will need to lead from the front.

Tip: Sydney FC


Western United v Melbourne Victory at GMHBA Stadium, 4pm

Head to head: United 1, Victory 0, drawn 0

Last clash: Round 4, 2019-20, United 3-2 at Marvel Stadium

Victory arrested their slide with a gritty 1-0 win over Perth Glory, while United slumped to their third straight win and look to have lost that early-season sparkle. Mark Rudan's side will need to reignite their connection in the final third to turn things around.

Key: Robbie Kruse. The winger turned in a much-needed matchwinning performance against Perth Glory and will want to build on that going forward. Victory look a totally different side with Kruse, Toivonen and Nabbout all available.

Tip: Victory

Adelaide United v Newcastle Jets at Coopers Stadium, 6pm

Head to head: Adelaide 17, Newcastle, 13, drawn 14

Last clash: Round 3, 2019-20, Adelaide 2-1 at McDonald Jones Stadium

Adelaide were brought crashing back down to earth at the hands of the Phoenix, while the Jets have found form and have two wins on the spin. Expect an improved performance from the Reds after Gertjan Verbeek's post-match scorn.

Key: Riley McGree is in rare form at the moment and has formed an impressive combination with James Troisi. If Merrick is to secure all three points, he'll need to find a way to dismantle that chemistry - it could be a big evening for Steven Ugarkovic.

Tip: Adelaide

BYE: Central Coast Mariners.