Gold Coast United are still well and truly in the hunt for a second-placed finish and a win here will make life a lot easier on the Glamour Strip.
A loss and a draw in their last two has halted some momentum in Miron Bleiberg’s camp and they have to face a Perth Glory outfit who produced a scintillating 4-2 win over Adelaide United the last time they stepped out.
The loss of skipper and marquee midfielder Jason Culina to the Australian squad for the next month could prove costly but United have shown they have a lot of depth so far this season.
A damning statistic for this match when trying to pick a winner is the fact that the Glory have saluted just once in 11 matches on the road this season whilst United have won five and drawn three from 10 matches at Skilled Park this term.
That is evidence enough that the Gold Coast should win but I feel that Ian Ferguson’s refreshed Glory outfit are a bit better than they have shown in the past.
Verdict: 1-1 draw
Gold Coast United vs. Perth Glory
Date: Monday, 3 January 2010
Venue: Skilled Park, Robina
Local kick-off: 6:00pm local time (7:00pm AEDT)
Referee: Peter O'Leary
Head-to-Head: All matches (played 4): Gold Coast United wins 3, Perth Glory wins 0 (1 draw)
Match fact: Gold Coast United midfielder Tahj Minniecon is set to make his 50th Hyundai A-League appearance.
Gold Coast United squad: 1.Glen MOSS [gk], 2.Steve PANTELIDIS, 5.ROBSON, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Zenon CARAVELLA, 8.ANDERSON, 11.Bruce DJITE, 13.Bas VAN DEN BRINK, 14.Joel PORTER, 16.Kristian REES, 19.Andrew BARISIC, 20.Scott HIGGINS [gk], 21.Golgol MEBRAHTU, 22.Adama TRAORE, 23.Steve FITZSIMMONS, 24.John CURTIS, 25.Chris BROADFOOT, 27.Chris HAROLD *three to be omitted*
In: ANDERSON (promoted), Andrew BARISIC (promoted), Golgol MEBRAHTU (promoted), Steve FITZSIMMONS (promoted), Chris BROADFOOT (promoted), Chris HAROLD (promoted).
Out: Michael THWAITE (suspended – 1 match), Jason CULINA (international duty), Ben HALLORAN (not selected).
Unavailable: James BROWN (ankle injury – 1 week), Daniel PIORKOWSKI (ankle injury – indefinite), Matt OSMAN (knee injury – indefinite)
Perth Glory squad: 1. Tando VELAPHI (gk), 2. Josh MITCHELL, 3. Jamie COYNE, 5.Jamie HARNWELL, 6.Chris COYNE, 7.Jacob BURNS (C), 9.Robbie FOWLER, 11. Branko JELIC, 12.Scott NEVILLE, 13.Tommy AMPHLETT, 14.Steven McGARRY, 15.Howard FONDYKE, 16. Adriano PELLEGRINO, 17. Todd HOWARTH, 18.Brent GRIFFITHS, 19. Naum SEKULOVSKI, 20. Alex Pearson (gk), 21.Mile STERJOVSKI, 22.Anthony SKORICH, 24. Josh RISDON *five to be omitted*
In: Chris COYNE (returns from loan), Branko JELIC (promoted), Tommy AMPHLETT (promoted), Brent GRIFFITHS (promoted)
Unavailable: Andy TODD (hip – 1 week), Victor SIKORA (hip – season)