Another team who can class themselves as unlucky from last weekend is Sydney FC.
The reigning champs slumped to the bottom of the table when referee Matthew Breeze showed goalkeeper Liam Reddy a red card and awarded Central Coast Mariners recruit Patricio Perez a penalty which was converted to force a 1-1 draw.
A win would have seen the Sky Blues move up to eighth but that wasn’t to be and now the magnifying glass is out and focused directly above the Sydney Football Stadium and coach Vitezslav Lavicka.
A loss here and it almost spells disaster for the 2009/10 title winners although in a 30-game season, they may still be able to peg things back, especially when they have everyone fit and firing.
Skipper Terry McFlynn and star striker Alex Brosque will miss again and midweek signing Bruno Cazarine is unlikely to have his International Transfer Certificate in time meaning the goalscoring duties will again fall on Mark Bridge.
In the Reds camp, things are rosy with Dutchman Rini Coolen guiding last season’s wooden spooners to second on the table with a great brand of football.
Adelaide have done this without inspirational skipper Travis Dodd as Lucas Pantelis has picked up the slack, wearing the captain’s armband with assurance, and plenty of players getting themselves on the scoresheet which has failed to happen in the past.
Without their key players, Sydney will have to pull out a huge performance to win this but I sense the Reds will be baying for blood after losing this fixture twice last term.
Verdict: Adelaide 1-0.
Sydney FC v Adelaide United
Date: Saturday, 4 September 2010
Venue: Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney
Local kick-off: 7.30pm
Head-to-Head: All matches (played 17): Sydney FC wins 9, Adelaide United wins 6 (2 draws)
Referee: Peter Green
Live and exclusive broadcast on FOX Sports 1, FS1 HD & on Sky Sports 3. Hyundai A-League club broadcast partner is SBS Digital (Sydney) and ABC Digital (Adelaide). To purchase tickets visit www.ticketek.com.au
Sydney FC squad: 1. Liam REDDY (gk), 2. Sebastian RYALL 3. Stephan KELLER, 5. Hayden FOXE, 6. Hirofumi MORIYASU, 7. Brendan GAN, 8. Stuart MUSIALIK, 9. Bruno CAZARINE, 10. Nick CARLE, 11. Kofi DANNING, 12. Shannon COLE, 13. Antony GOLEC, 16. Terry ANTONIS, 17. Matthew JURMAN, 19. Mark BRIDGE, 20. Ivan NECEVSKI (gk), 21. Scott JAMIESON, 22. Sung-Hwan BYUN, 23. Rhyan GRANT *four to be omitted*
In: Antony GOLEC (promoted), Bruno CAZARINE (pending clearance)
Out: Terry MCFLYNN (Hamstring – 2 weeks), Alex BROSQUE (Ankle – 2 weeks), Dimitri PETRATOS
Adelaide United squad: 1.Eugene GALEKOVIC (gk), 2. Robert CORNTHWAITE, 4.Iain FYFE, 5.Daniel MULLEN, 6.CASSIO, 7.Lucas PANTELIS (c), 8.Adam HUGHES, 9.Sergio VAN DIJK, 10.Marcos FLORES, 12.Paul REID, 17.Iain RAMSAY, 19.Mathew LECKIE, 20.Mark BIRIGHITTI (gk), 24.Cameron WATSON, 26.Joe KEENAN
In: Robert CORNTHWAITE (returns from injury)
Out: Inseob SHIN (omitted)
Unavailable: Nigel BOOGAARD (ankle – 9 weeks), Travis DODD (groin – 5 weeks), Lloyd OWUSU (knee – indefinite), Fabian BARBIERO (ankle – 2 weeks)