Before the season started, this fixture would not have been one to pencil in as a game to watch but football works in weird ways sometimes.
The Fury have been criticised all pre-season and are not expected to do well this term whilst the Sky Blues are defending their 2009/10 title and have been widely tipped to make a strong challenge for it again.
However, last weekend showed that North Queensland actually do have some ability despite the loss of Robbie Fowler and that they could cause some problems for opponents this season, including the reigning champs.
They played an exciting brand in their 3-3 draw with Fowler’s new club Perth Glory and often looked dangerous with speed and youth in their attacking third.
Sydney had a goalfest of their own, drawing 3-3 with Melbourne Victory in the Grand Final rematch but they conceded three times in seven minutes indicating a lack of focus when they seemingly had the match wrapped up at 2-0.
But Sydney are better than that and should be good enough to atone at Dairy Farmers Stadium with a win over an exciting Fury outfit.
Verdict: Sydney 2-1.
North Queensland Fury v Sydney FC
Date: Saturday, 14 August, 2010
Venue: Dairy Farmers Stadium, Townsville
Local kick-off: 5.15pm
Head-to-Head: All matches (played 3): North Queensland Fury wins 1, Sydney FC wins 2 (0 draws)
Referee: Peter Green
Live and exclusive broadcast on FOX Sports 3, FS3 HD & delayed on Sky Sports 3. Hyundai A-League club broadcast partner is Zinc 100.7 (Townsville) and SBS Digital. To purchase tickets visit www.ticketek.com.au
North Queensland Fury FC squad: 1. Justin PASFIELD (gk), 2.Jack HINGERT, 3.Brad McDonald, 4. Eric AKOTO, 5. Mark HUGHES, 7. Gareth EDDS (c), 8. Adam CASEY, 10. Dyron DAAL, 11. David WILLIAMS, 12. Panagiotis NIKAS, 14. Chris GROSSMAN, 15. Chris PAYNE, 16. Simon STOREY, 17. Osama MALIK, 18. Brett STUDMAN, 19. Isaka CERNAK, 20. Matthew HAM (gk), 21. Jason SPAGNUOLO *five to be omitted*
In: 3.Brad McDonald (new signing), 9.Eugene SSEPPUYA (transfer clearance), 2.Jack HINGERT (promoted), 7.Ufuk TALAY (returns from calf injury)
Unavailable: 13.Andre KILIAN (3 weeks - foot)
Sydney FC squad: 1. Liam REDDY (gk), 2. Sebastian RYALL 3. Stephan KELLER, 5. Hayden FOXE, 7. Brendan GAN, 8. Stuart MUSIALIK, 10. Nick CARLE, 11. Kofi DANNING, 12. Shannon COLE, 13. Antony GOLEC, 14. Alex BROSQUE, 15. Terry MCFLYNN (c), 20. Ivan NECEVSKI (gk), 21. Scott JAMIESON, 22. Sung-Hwan BYUN, 23. Rhyan GRANT *one to be omitted*
In: 7.Brendan GAN
Out: 9.Mark BRIDGE (Hamstring – 1 week)