Melbourne City will be looking for back-to-back wins for the first time since Round 4 as they face the Central Coast on Sunday.
Warren Joyce’s side got back to winning ways last week against the high-flying Newcastle Jets – breaking a four-match winless run – and will look to continue that momentum against the Mariners.
Former cellar dwellers, the Mariners sit fourth on the A-League ladder, four points behind City and looking to continue their early season form that has seen them win three of their past four matches.
The latest was three points against Perth Glory last Sunday and Paul Okon has looked to turn a page with his side as they continue to improve as a team.
Goals have been aplenty in this fixture and Sunday could be the same with 23 goals in the past five matches between the sides and both teams will be looking to prove a point come Sunday.
Manny Muscat exits the squad, serving a one-match ban for an accumulation of yellow cards. See who replaces him in our team news.
Last time they met
The score line read 3-2 to City’s favour but it could have easily been 5-4 as a Bruno Fornaroli double headlined the act at Central Coast Stadium in March.
Both sides scored own goals with Nick Montgomery and Ruon Tongyik finding themselves on the opposition’s score sheet but it was City who would take the three points.
Stats and facts
- Melbourne City are undefeated in their last six games against the Mariners (W5, D1), after having picked up just one win in 15 encounters prior (D4, L10).
- Melbourne City have won the last three meetings between these squads played on a Sunday, scoring 10 goals in the process.
- Ross McCormack has recorded seven shots on target from outside the box this campaign, more than any other player.
- In fact, McCormack has scored three direct free-kick goals this campaign; no other player has managed more than one.
What was said
Melbourne City Head Coach Warren Joyce
“There are some clever players and good footballers,” he said.
“They play good football like Newcastle, they are a form team and they have players who can hurt you, people with tricks.
“They might not have the biggest names but if you watch them, they play good football. They have people with ability that can handle the ball and dribble and score.
Central Coast Head Coach Paul Okon
“We expect it to be a really tough game. City have a tough roster, some really dangerous players in the final third and like every week, we’re going to need to put in a really good performance and try and be mistake free,” he said.
“City have had a dip in results which can happen so like most weeks, we don’t pay attention to the ladder, we just play who we see in front of us.”
Where and when
City take on the Central Coast Mariners on Sunday as part of our Star Wars Round Double Header. Women’s kick-off against Canberra at 4.30pm, men’s kick-off 7pm.