Melbourne City FC will be looking to make it two wins on the trot when they host Melbourne Victory in a blockbuster stand-alone W-League Melbourne Derby at AAMI Park.
Following a tale of missed opportunities against Canberra United in Round 1, which saw the hosts run away with a clinical 2-0 win, Head Coach Rado Vidosic’s side bounced back with a comprehensive 3-1 win over last season’s grand finalists Sydney FC.
Greeted by the home fans for the first time since their 2017/18 championship win, City were fast off the blocks and looked determined to rectify their Round 1 loss. American import Jasmyne Spencer got the hosts off to the best possible start at AAMI Park, producing a brilliant solo effort to open the scoring 13 minutes into the contest.
The Sky Blues hit back eight minutes later, equalising through Matildas youngster Amy Sayer. The second-half commenced much-like the first with both team’s level on the scoreboard and City pushing early to break the deadlock. Perseverance prevailed and three-minutes into the second-half Spencer gave City a 2-1 lead, before sealing the points and her hattrick with a brilliant strike on the hour mark.
It was an imposing performance across the 90 minutes by each of City’s players, but there is no doubt that the inclusions of Matildas international Elise Kellond-Knight and World Cup winner Yukari Kinga had a commanding influence on the match. Both players brought a sense of composure and experience to the midfield, two feats which proved to be invaluable.
With one win from two games, City now sits in fifth place on the league table, one point behind their cross-town rivals Melbourne Victory.
Victory are yet to suffer defeat in the new campaign, registering a 0-0 draw with Adelaide United in Round 1 before defeating Newcastle Jets 2-1 at Lakeside Stadium in Round 2.
It was a frenetic start at Lakeside Stadium in Round 2, with all three goals being scored within the opening 12 minutes of the match. Melina Ayres opened the scoring with an early contender for goal of the year in the seventh minute, before captain Natasha Dowie doubled Victory’s lead in the 11th minute.
Cortnee Vine hit back for the Jets one-minute later, but their revival was to be short lived, unable to breakdown Melbourne’s defence.
If recent history is anything to go by, Friday night's Melbourne Derby is set to go down to the wire. With a plethora of attacking prowess on both sides of the pitch, it just might end up being a battle of whose defence can withstand the pressure.
Matildas international Tameka Butt is set to make her Melbourne City debut. See our full team news.
Last time they met
The last time the two teams met, Melbourne City suffered a 2-1 defeat to Melbourne Victory at Epping Stadium.
What was said
Melbourne City Head Coach Rado Vidosic
"Derby matches are always exciting. We're hoping that there's a great crowd at AAMI Park on Friday night and we want to put on a show for the fans"
Melbourne City attacker Tameka Butt
"I'm pretty excited, it's my first game for Melbourne City so I may as well start big [on debuting in a Melbourne Derby]"
Where and when
City host Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park on Friday 16 November, kick-off 7:30pm. Get your tickets here.