Melbourne City FC will be looking to make it back-to-back wins when they play Newcastle Jets at McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Warren Joyce’s men are coming off a comprehensive 3-0 win over Western Sydney Wanderers at AAMI Park last Saturday night.
City was rewarded for their dominant first-half performance when Bruno Fornaroli opened the scoring on the stroke of half-time. Nathaniel Atkinson produced a tremendous run before playing the ball out to Daniel Arzani, the 19-year-old’s cross then found Fornaroli who made no mistake from inside the 18 yard box.
Captain Michael Jakobsen would double City’s lead when he registered his first goal for the Club with a powerful header from close range in the 57th minute, before Stefan Mauk secured the three points with a brilliant left-footed finish following an outstanding combination with Fornaroli.
Despite City producing one of their strongest all-round performances of the year, this weekend’s clash won’t be easy as they come up against the second-placed Newcastle Jets.
Ernie Merrick’s men will be determined to bounce back following their disappointing 5-2 loss to Adelaide United at Coopers Stadium last weekend.
The Reds held a 2-0 lead at the break courtesy of a Daniel Adlung double, before Ryan Kitto, Johan Absalonsen and Dzengis Cavusevic all found the back of the net in the second-half.
Ben Kantarovski notched a second-half brace for Newcastle, but it wasn’t enough as the Jets registered their fifth loss of the season.
With City desperate to secure the three points to retain third position and Newcastle eager to return to the winner’s list, Sunday’s game is shaping up to be a must-watch match between two of the league’s most entertaining attacking teams.
Osama Malik (quad) and Iacopo La Rocca (calf) still remain out of the preliminary squad due to fitness concerns, while the squad is otherwise relatively unchanged. Click here for the latest team news.
Last time they met
City hosted Newcastle at AAMI Park in Round 18, where a late Dario Vidosic strike earned a 2-2 draw for the hosts.
Nikolai Topor-Stanley opened the scoring in the third minute, before Daniel Arzani responded with a goal from the penalty spot on the stroke of half-time. The Jets restored their lead in the 70th minute when former Melbourne Heart defender Jason Hoffman found the back of the net, but Dario Vidosic hit back, earning his side a share of the spoils with an 82nd minute equaliser.
What was said
Head Coach Warren Joyce
“Obviously we’re just looking at it one game at a time, you know we’ve done that all season. Just prepare for the game this week and try and get in a situation where we can stop them from playing and we can hurt them when we get the ball.
Newcastle Jets Head Coach Ernie Merrick
“Although our position on the ladder won’t change, it’s important we play some good football over the last three games and gain some momentum. Momentum is vital and playing a style of football we want to play during the finals is very important. – you can’t draw or lose in the finals, because otherwise you’re out.
Where and when
City play Newcastle Jets at McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday, 1st April, kick-off 5:00pm (AEDT), before hosting Central Coast Mariners in the Club’s last home game of the season at AAMI Park on Saturday, 7th April, kick-off 7:50pm (AEDT).
The match will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 501. You can also follow all the actions as it happens by following our official Twitter account @MelbourneCity.