Stats Review: Duric, Petratos crucial for Mariners and Jets success
One started playing in the Hyundai A-League almost a decade ago and is a Caltex Socceroos international approaching the prime of his career.
The other is a 32-year-old Serbian star who is just two games into his career in Australia.
There are plenty of differences between Newcastle Jets playmaker Dimitri Petratos and Central Coast Mariners midfielder Milan Duric.
But there's one thing the pair have in common. They are both absolutely crucial to the way their teams attack.
If both the Jets and Mariners are to have improved seasons and reach the Hyundai A-League Finals Series, then the duo are going to play massive roles.
Judging by the stats from Round 2, it appears no other team is more reliant on an individual to create chances for the side than the Jets and Mariners than Petratos and Duric.
Watch the video at the top of the article as we breakdown Duric and Petratos’ contribution to their sides in Round 2.
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Duric was simply superb for Alen Stajcic side in Saturday night’s 1-1 F3 derby draw in Gosford.
Not only did he score the Mariners’ goal with a classy volley inside the first four minutes, he also hit the woodwork twice and covered every blade of grass at Central Coast Stadium.
The Serbian was involved in 75% of the Mariners’ goal and chance contribution against the Jets, the highest percentage of any player over the weekend.
A close second was Petratos, who scored the Jets’ equaliser from the penalty spot and was involved in 64% of his sides goal and chance contribution.
No other player in the competition managed to contribute more than 50% to their teams goal/chance creation in Round 2, underlining how vital Petratos and Duric are to their side’s attacking thrust.
Age-old principles for United
Western United have made a strong start to life in the Hyundai A-League. A lot has revolved around Mark Rudan's investment in experienced, streetwise professionals.
Having fielded the third oldest starting XI in Hyundai A-League history in the win over Wellington Phoenix – with an average age of 31.8 years – Rudan’s side created Australian national soccer league history in Round 2.
As stats whiz Andrew Howe uncovered, United had the oldest starting 22 players ever in two successive matches.
With an average age over the first two rounds of 31.2 years, they overtake the Sydney FC team from the 2017/18 campaign, whose average age was 31.1 years.
That experience has certainly counted for something in the first two weeks of the campaign, with United currently unbeaten and sitting in fourth spot on four points.