A-League Week 12 kicks off tomorrow night with a juicy encounter between arch rivals Melbourne Victory and Adelaide United. The Victory are back at their preferred Etihad Stadium where they brushed aside Sydney FC two weeks ago but this time they will be up against the league leaders and not the bottom placed side.
Adelaide go into this clash having lost their past nine meetings with the Victory but if there was ever a time for them to end that run, it is now.
They are playing a top brand of football under Rini Coolen, allowing them to enjoy a three-point cushion on the rest of the league as the only undefeated team with seven wins from 11 matches.
That form bodes very well for this contest as the Victory were beaten by second-placed Brisbane Roar last weekend but the two-time champions are likely to turn things around on the big stage and with plenty of support expected at their spiritual home, Ernie Merrick's men can inflict Adelaide's first defeat of the season.
Verdict: Victory 2-1
Melbourne Victory v Adelaide UnitedDate: Friday 29 October 2010 Venue: Etihad Stadium, Melbourne Local kick-off: 8.00pm (AEDT), 7.30pm (ACDT) Head-to-Head: All matches (played 21): Melbourne Victory wins 13, Adelaide United wins 5 (3 draws) Referee: Ben Williams
Live and exclusive broadcast on FOX Sports 1, FS1 HD & Sky Sport 1 (NZ). Hyundai A-League club radio broadcast partners are 774 ABC (Melbourne), SEN Digital and ABC Digital (Adelaide). To purchase tickets visit www.ticketmaster.com.au
Melbourne Victory squad: 1.Michael PETKOVIC (gk), 2. Kevin MUSCAT (c), 3. Mate DUGANDZIC, 4. Petar FRANJIC, 5.Surat SUKHA, 6. Leigh BROXHAM, 8.Grant BREBNER, 9.RICARDINHO, 11.Marvin ANGULO, 12.Rodrigo VARGAS, 13. Diogo FERREIRA, 14. Billy CELESKI, 15.Tom PONDELJAK, 16.Carlos HERNANDEZ, 19. Evan BERGER, 20.Sebastian MATTEI (gk), 21. Robbie KRUSE 23. Adrian LEIJER, 27. Geoff KELLAWAY *four to be omitted* In: Surat SUKHA (returns from injury), Petar FRANJIC (promoted), Diogo FERREIRA (promoted), Marvin ANGULO (promoted) Out: Nil Unavailable: Archie THOMPSON (knee - 2-3 weeks), Matthew KEMP (knee - 2-4 weeks)
Adelaide United squad: 1.Eugene GALEKOVIC (gk), 2.Robert CORNTHWAITE, 4.Iain FYFE, 6.CASSIO, 7.Lucas PANTELIS (c), 8.Adam HUGHES, 9.Sergio VAN DIJK, 10.Marcos FLORES, 12.Paul REID, 16.Inseob SHIN, 17.Iain RAMSAY, 18.Fabian BARBIERO, 19.Mathew LECKIE, 20.Mark BIRIGHITTI (gk), 24.Cameron WATSON In: Cameron WATSON (short term contract) Out: Daniel MULLEN (ankle - 3 weeks), Travis DODD (achilles - 1 week) Unavailable: Nigel BOOGAARD (ankle - 3 weeks), Lloyd OWUSU (knee - indefinite)