Sydney FC were belted 7-2 by Central Coast last weekend. Source: Getty Images/news.com.au
Sydney FC will be looking to bounce back from one of the worst performances in the clubs history when it takes on Melbourne Victory at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night. After putting together back-to-back wins against the Western Sydney and Perth, the Sky Blues were on the receiving end of a 7-2 hiding by the Central Coast Mariners last Saturday night. It wasn’t just the scoreline that would have concerned coach Ian Crook, but also the way that Central Coast was able to penetrate his side’s feeble defence.
Dutchman Pascal Bosschaart is likely to strengthen the sides defence after recovering from injury, while Fabio, Jason Culina and Alessandro Del Piero have all been named after missing last week’s drubbing. While the return of Del Piero –who has scored three goals from four games this season – will strengthen his side in attack, it will be his experience that will be of most benefit to his young teammates as they try to bounce back. Prior to the Mariners match, things were looking up in Sydney, with two straight wins moving the club away from the foot of the table and the return of key players will be a big boost against a side that they don’t have the best record against.
Sydney FC has won just five of the 24 meetings between the clubs, while Victory has collected the three points on seven occasions, with 12 matches ending in a draw . Sydney did score a 1-0 win on March 10, the last time that the side’s locked horns.
After making a slow start to the season, Melbourne has found some sort of form in the past three weeks with wins over Adelaide United and Wellington Phoenix. They have been aided by having a largely full strength squad to choose from, with only Spase Dilevski sidelined due to a foot injury. While results have started to improve for Victory, the fact that they have failed to keep a clean sheet this year must be of some concern. They managed to hold on for a 3-2 win against Wellington last week despite two goals in the final ten minutes and Ange Postecoglou must be wondering what he has to do to tighten things up at the back.
Both sides boast formidable attacking weapons with the likes of Del Piero, Archie Thompson and Marco Rojas on the field and there is a strong chance that the shaky defence of both teams will mean that we could be in for plenty of goals .
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