The difference between Central Coast Mariners and Perth Glory heading into their New Year’s Eve clash could not be more marked.
The Mariners are yet to win this Hyundai A-League campaign and prop up the ladder as the early season optimism surrounding Mike Mulvey’s men seems to have faded.
A 2-1 defeat at the hands of Newcastle Jets in the F3 Derby in Round 9 was not the way the Mariners wanted to head into the Hyundai A-League’s Summer of Heroes.
Perth meanwhile could not have hoped for a better start to their first season under Tony Popovic, perched on top of the Hyundai A-League ladder at Christmas.
Despite suffering their first defeat of the season against Sydney FC 2-1 last time out, their points in the bank were enough to keep them ahead of Melbourne Victory.
While this game could be seen as a forgone conclusion, one only has to look back at the last time these two teams clashed earlier this season in Perth.
Despite playing away from home, the Mariners had the scores all locked up at 2-2 heading into injury time only to watch in horror as Chris Ikonomidis popped up at the death to score the winning goal.
The home side will surely have that playing on their mind when they welcome the men in purple and it is often in these apparent mismatches that unexpected results can spring up.
Key Opta stats
- The results are split even in the last six fixtures, with both sides claiming three apiece. However, Perth Glory have won the last two.
- Tony Popovic has lost only twice out of 11 meetings against the Central Coast Mariners.
- Perth have won only two of their 20 fixtures at Central Coast Stadium, failing to score in their last three at the venue.
Ins and outs
Central Coast Mariners squad: Central Coast Mariners squad: 3.Jack CLISBY, 4.Jake McGING, 5.Antony GOLEC, 7.Andrew HOOLE, 8.Michael McGLINCHEY, 10.Tommy OAR, 11.Connor PAIN, 12.Adam PEARCE (gk), 13.Aiden O’NEILL, 15.Kye ROWLES, 16.Josh MACDONALD,18.Matt MILLAR, 19.Matt SIMON (c), 20.Kalifa CISSE, 22.Jacob MELLING, 23.Mario SHABOW, 24.Joe GAUCI, 25.Jordan MURRAY
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 10.Tommy OAR (return from injury), 20.Kalifa CISSE (promoted)
Unavailable: 21.Corey GAMEIRO (calf), 44.Ross McCORMACK (knee), 1.Ben KENNEDY (leg injury) & 6.Tom HIARIEJ (calf injury)
Perth Glory squad: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 2. Alex GRANT, 3.Jason DAVIDSON, 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Joel CHIANESE, 9.Andy KEOGH, 11.Brendon SANTALAB, 13.Matthew SPIRANOVIC, 15.Brandon WILSON, 16.Tomislav MRCELA, 17.Diego CASTRO, 20.Jake BRIMMER, 22.Fabio FERREIRA, 23.Scott NEVILLE, 27.JUANDE, 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 88.Neil KILKENNY
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 13.Matthew SPIRANOVIC (returns from injury), 17.Diego CASTRO (returns from injury), 2. Alex Grant (returns from injury), 22.Fabio FERREIRA (promoted)
Outs: 4.Shane LOWRY (suspended) Chris IKONOMIDIS (International Duty)
How to watch
Tune in to FOX SPORTS 505 from 7:30pm AEDT or watch through the MyFootball Live App.
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