Round 25 is here as City take on Premiers Sydney FC on Saturday night. See all the points, stats and quotes ahead of the encounter.
Melbourne City will travel to Sydney for the second time in two weeks as they look to regain the momentum ahead of the Finals Series against newly-crowned Premiers Sydney FC.
Despite last week’s loss to the rampant Wanderers at Spotless Stadium, City returned to Melbourne not looking to dwell on the result, with three crucial games left in the regular season to secure the all-important third spot.
After wrapping up the Premiership last week, Graham Arnold’s Sydney FC will not want to take the foot off the pedal coming into Finals with the Championship the ultimate goal for both sides coming into the contest.
If there is a week Sydney may take their minds of the league, it may be this one and Michael Valkanis’ men will need to make the most of any opportunity given to them by the defensively tight Sky Blues.
City Head Coach Michael Valkanis has added Tim Cahill and Denis Genreau to his extended side for the contest.
Cahill returns to the mix after his involvement in the Socceroos' World Cup Qualifiers against Iraq and UAE. Full team news
The last time
Contests between Sydney and City have been tight this season, despite the 3-1 loss in February at AAMI Park.
A tight first half saw Bobo open the scoring before Nick Fitzgerald’s stunner levelled the scoring a minute later. Manny Muscat’s second yellow before the stroke of half time saw the match change for City as the Sydneysiders flexed their muscle in the second half.
Michael Valkanis’ side will be taking inspiration from their Westfield FFA Cup win in November 2016 however, looking to continue their impressive record at Allianz Stadium.
Stats and facts
Sydney FC won their last encounter with Melbourne City, snapping a five-game winless streak against them (D3, L2), and will now be looking for consecutive wins against City for the first time since 2013.
Melbourne City are undefeated (W1, D3) in their last four games away from home against Sydney FC, though neither team has managed to score more than a single goal in any one of those four games.
Both Sydney FC and Melbourne City have recorded 337 shots at goal so far this season, more than any other teams in the competition.
Bruno Fornaroli has scored four goals in his last four games against the Sky Blues, though he hasn’t found the back of the net in either of their last two meetings.
What was said this week
“I think the start of the Western Sydney game was great. We haven’t started too well this season but we did that against the Wanderers. We need to stay together and try picking up wins along the way and we do that again this week.”
“I don’t like to look back too often. It’s about getting the confidence for the next game against Sydney.” Full article
Sydney fullback Michael Zullo
“I think subconsciously you always want to beat your former team, and on a personal level you really want to perform for whatever reason.”
“For me personally it’s two-fold, it’s about performing well and proving a point to an extent, but more importantly on a team level it’s about keeping our form going and getting a foot up on a competitor that’s also in the top six and we have a chance of playing in the finals.”
Where and when
City take on Sydney FC on Saturday night, kick-off 7.50pm.
See the match live on Fox Sports 505, listen on SEN1116 and ABC Grandstand and follow the match on Social Media on our official Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.
Our final home match of the season is in next week as we take on Adelaide United on Friday 7 April, kick-off 7.50pm. Secure your place at the match today!