Stats Preview: Wanderers caretaker de Marigny could land unique club record
Jean-Paul de Marigny will attempt to be the first coach in Western Sydney Wanderers' history to claim victories in his first two Hyundai A-League matches this weekend.
Interim head coach de Marigny is aiming to break new club ground when the Red and Black host Newcastle Jets on Saturday evening.
The Wanderers have had four men attempt back-to-back victories first up – Tony Popovic, interim coach Hayden Foxe interim, Josep Gombau and Markus Babbel – and all four have been unable to do so.
Popovic drew the Wanderers' inaugural fixture 0-0 against Central Coast Mariners before going down to Sydney FC, and after the AFC Champions League-winning manager departed the club in November on the eve of the 2017/18 season for Turkish club Karabükspor, Foxe beat Perth Glory and drew with the Mariners in his wake.
Gombau would ultimately take the reins in Parramatta and tally 1-1 draws against Melbourne Victory and Melbourne City, while Babbel, appointed Western Sydney head coach for the 2018/19 campaign, followed up a 1-1 draw with Perth with derby defeat to Sydney.
Caretaker boss de Marigny might not find himself in the Wanderers hot-seat for as long as the previous managers of the Red and Black, but he could still leave a unique statistical mark on the club with three points against Newcastle in Carl Robinson's maiden outing at the helm, whose first task as Jets coach is to avoid a sixth away defeat on the bounce.
City have firepower to notch win outside of Victoria
With a derby win now under his belt, making Melbourne City more competitive outside of Victoria will be up high on coach Erick Mombaerts' list of priorities.
City have only won four of their last 15 matches played outside of the state – the last of which a dismal 3-1 defeat on the road to Adelaide United.
It is a record the Hyundai A-League's second-placed team have the attacking arsenal to arrest, not least in Socceroos striker Jamie Maclaren who has been directly involved in seven of City's last 10 goals.
City are also the only side outside of competition frontrunners Sydney FC to average two or more goals per game away from home this season (2.1). The second-place side travel to Auckland on Saturday to face Wellington Phoenix at Eden Park.
Western United search to find balance
City's Victorian rivals Western United have also not been lacking the firepower department in recent times – but it has not saved Mark Rudan's side from earning a solitary win from their last six fixtures.
The Hyundai A-League new boys have the net three times in three of their last four home matches, winning two of those games before a 4-3 reverse to Adelaide in the most recent home game.
As United prepare to host in-form Brisbane Roar on Sunday afternoon, they might do well to draw from their previous performance against Robbie Fowler's men. That was a 2-0 win in Queensland in which United surrendered the initiative but strangled their opponents out of the game.
Finding a balance between full-throttle, free-scoring form at home, and that infamously miserly display at Suncorp Stadium last December, would give the hosts a good chance of posting a win and leapfrogging Roar back into the top six.
Mariners seek to patch up on the road
Only a matter of months have passed, but Central Coast Mariners' shock 2-1 victory away to reigning Premiers Perth Glory last November seems light years ago.
A win in the Premiers' backyard hinted the Gosford club were going to made of sterner stuff on their travels this season, but that is not the way things have transpired for the Yellow and Navy.
Alen Stajcic's side have lost their last six matches away from home, conceding 15 goals – four of which arrived in last Sunday's 4-3 defeat to rivals Newcastle Jets.
It is grim reading ahead of the club's visit to Adelaide United – who have won seven of their last nine against the Mariners at Coopers Stadium – on Friday.
To make the fixture more daunting, Central Coast have not kept a clean sheet against the Reds since April 2014's Elimination Final. The Mariners back five on that night? Liam Reddy in goals, Josh Rose, Storm Roux, Eddy Bosnar and Zac Anderson.
MATCH PREVIEW: Adelaide United v Central Coast Mariners
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