The home side were back to their best last week with a solid 3-0 win over Melbourne Heart.
It was a good reaction from their shock loss to North Queensland Fury during the week prior and will have them at feeling confident heading into this clash with the Phoenix, who have not had the best of luck on their travels this season.
They managed a last-gasp win over Adelaide United in Christchurch on Sunday which will give them some self-belief but all you need to do is look at the players the Gold Coast are getting back and it seems like this one may be a bit too much for the New Zealanders.
Goalkeeper Glen Moss, defender Michael Thwaite, midfielder Zenon Caravella and the versatile Steve Pantelidis are all inclusions to their preliminary squad and although all four won’t be starting, it shows the depth Miron Bleiberg has at his disposal.
The Phoenix have lost midfielder Nick Ward for about a month but get flying winger Leo Bertos back which will help but United are going too well to let a fixture at home such as this past without collecting a full quota of points.
Verdict: Gold Coast 2-1
Gold Coast United v Wellington Phoenix
Venue: Skilled Park, Gold Coast
Date: Saturday, 11 December 2010
Local kick-off time: 8.15pm (9.15pm AEDT)
Referee: Allan Milliner
Head-to-head: All matches (played 5): Gold Coast United wins 1, Wellington Phoenix wins 2 (2 draws)
Match fact: Gold Coast United midfielder Tahj Minniecon will make his 50th Hyundai A-League appearance the next time he takes the field.
Gold Coast United squad: 1.Glen MOSS [gk], 2.Steve PANTELIDIS, 3.Michael THWAITE, 5.ROBSON, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Zenon CARAVELLA, 8.ANDERSON, 10.Jason CULINA (c), 11.Bruce DJITE, 13.Bas VAN DEN BRINK, 15.Tahj MINNIECON, 16.Kristian REES, 18.James BROWN, 20.Scott HIGGINS [gk]. 22.Adama TRAORE, 24.John CURTIS *one to be omitted*
In: Glen MOSS [gk] (return from ankle injury), Steve PANTELIDIS (return from facial injury), Michael THWAITE (return from ankle injury), Zenon CARAVELLA (return from thigh injury)
Out: Jerrad TYSON [gk] (not selected), Andrew BARISIC (not selected), Steve FITZSIMMONS (not selected)
Unavailable: Joel PORTER (hamstring injury – 1 week), Chris BROADFOOT (knee injury – 6 weeks), Daniel PIORKOWSKI (ankle injury – indefinite), Matt OSMAN (knee injury – indefinite)
Wellington Phoenix squad: 1. Mark PASTON (gk), 2. Manny MUSCAT, 6. Tim BROWN, 7. Leo BERTOS, 8. Paul IFILL, 9. Chris GREENACRE, 11. DANIEL, 13. Troy HEARFIELD, 15. Jade NORTH, 17. Vince LIA, 18. Ben SIGMUND, 19. Danny VUKOVIC (gk), 21. Marco ROJAS, 22. Andrew DURANTE (c), 23. Dylan MACALLISTER, 26. Simon ELLIOTT *one to be omitted*
In: Leo BERTOS (return from injury)
Out: Nick WARD (calf – 4 weeks)
Unavailable: Tony LOCHHEAD (groin – 2 weeks), Oscar Roberto CORNEJO (knee – 2 weeks)