We look at the five things we are looking forward to ahead of Friday's clash with Perth Glory.
In what is shaping up to be the match of the round, City and Perth will come up against each other with both sides looking to continue their undefeated starts to the season.
There’s no hiding City’s 2-0-0 opening – its first in Club history – and John van’t Schip’s side are flying with their style of football and their newly developed grit when defending their goal. Perth on the other hand would be disappointed with their second half capitulation against the Mariners but beside that, they have almost been faultless in the opening rounds.
Both sides have scored five goals in two matches this season so expect plenty of fireworks on Friday night in a match that will be a spectacle for the neutrals.
The one key advantage City have coming into the contest is its home support at AAMI Park. van’t Schip’s side lost three matches at the ground last season – two in the opening six rounds – and will look to continue this impressive record against a side that has historically struggled at the ground.
Add in the spice of the almost 11,000 members who have signed up for the 2016/17 season and you have a home crowd that will be riding every City attack with plenty of gusto. We saw the turn-out for our away Derby at Etihad Stadium last week and we can’t wait for an AAMI Park full of City supporters this week to be the 12th man and get our boys to another three points.
We’ve been used to selection dilemmas in the past with injuries and international duty but in 2016/17, the selection problems have been a lot different.
Squad depth and competition has been the key to recruitment this season and we have already seen the positive effects from that.
The goalkeeping battle has warmed up with the return of Thomas Sorensen from suspension. After two great performances from Dean Bouzanis, we’re still unsure who JvS will select to don the gloves against Perth but there is no doubt there is confidence in both ‘keepers.
The headaches don’t end there for the Head Coach with only three spots available in the defensive line and an attack boasting some of the league’s best talents so time will tell on who will make not only the starting eleven, but the final 16.
You mention Melbourne City this week, you think of Tim Cahill and that unbelievable goal but there were a few unsung heroes from the contest that will be sure to take the limelight sooner rather than later.
The performances of Bruce Kamau and Fernando Brandan went relatively unnoticed on Saturday and we think the duo will play an important role in the progression of our season.
Kamau was a class above on the right wing, causing the Victory defence to look second rate while Fernando’s endeavour was exemplified by his ability to out header Socceroo Jason Geria, a man almost a foot taller.
The duo’s ethic reflects City’s new ethos and we can’t wait to see more of it this weekend!
First of three
It’s a big week for City. Three matches in seven days is what’s ahead for van’t Schip’s men with arguably their most important coming on Tuesday night as they compete for the chance to be one win away from silverware.
What’s going for City however is that all three matches will be in the familiar background of AAMI Park. Our record at home speaks for itself and a win against Perth on Friday could leave City in pole position for a memorable month in the context of our season and possibly Club history.