Melbourne City’s youth will play their final Victorian game of the 2018/19 season this Sunday, returning to C.B Smith reserve as part of a huge W-League / Y-League doubleheader.
Currently second in the Y-League’s Conference A, Head Coach Joe Palatsides’ side will enter their matchup with third-placed Perth Glory knowing that anything less than a win will all but scupper their chances of reaching yet another Y-League decider.
With both sides having two games remaining on their slate of fixtures, City will sit at least a point adrift of Conference toppers Brisbane Roar entering the day’s play – the Roar set to clash with Adelaide United on Saturday night.
Given Brisbane’s superior goal difference – they possess a healthy +10 margin compared to City’s +4 – two wins from their last two compared with their Queensland based suffering a defeat in one of their two remaining games against Adelaide and Melbourne Victory looms as City’s most likely path to the Grand Final.
The first these wins will need to come against Head Coach Richard Garcia’s Perth Glory.
With a bye in the final week of the regular season, Sunday’s contest represents the final chance for the West Australian to pick up points for 2018/19.
However, their hopes of reaching the season’s finale is likely a forlorn one given that they would not only need Brisbane to lose both their remaining fixtures but also do so in a manner that reversed the current ten goal chasm that exists between the two sides goal differences.
City – who will travel to Adelaide for their last game of the 2018/19 regular season – last met the Glory in round three, where they notched their first points of the campaign with a 3-0 over their purple-clad foes at Dorrien Gardens.
Striker Moudi Najjar fired City ahead after only 19 minutes of that contest before an 86th minute strike from Dylan Pierias and 90th minute own goal from Jayden Leader sealed the result.
Palatsides’ side made it back-to-back 3-2 comeback wins in their last hit out when they erased a 2-0 Melbourne Victory lead in the season’s second Youth Melbourne Derby.
Jack Palazzolo struck in the 15th minute to hand Victory the lead in that meeting before the newly signed Elvis Kamsoba doubled his side’s advantage ten minutes later.
Nevertheless, Stefan Colakovski ensured that City went into the rooms at the half with a faint sense of hope when he found the net in the 37th minute.
An own goal from Victory’s Luke Goulding in the 46th minute and a 64th minute effort from Gianluca Iannucci then completed the response from City; making it two from two against their local rivals in 2018/19.
Glory were convincing winners in their round eights hit-out, downing Adelaide United 4-2 in their final home game of the year.
Jaidon Seldon opened proceedings for Glory in the 29th minute of the game, with Daniel Stynes then adding a second in the 54th minute.
Though Pacifique Niyongabire then pegged one back for the visitors in the 66th minute, immediate responses from Stynes and Ethan Brooks ensured Glory would take the three points, relegating the status of Taras Gomulka’s 79th minute goal for Adelaide to little but a consolation.
Foxtel Y-League Round 9
Sunday, 20 January 2019
Melbourne City FC v Melbourne Victory FC
Venue: C.B Smith Reserve, Fawkner, Melbourne, Victoria
Kick-off: 4:00 pm