Long time in between wins for the Mariners
We're only in round 6 of this A-League season,but you could not find a more stark contrast between teams such as this one.
Sydney FC maintain a near perfect record while sitting on top of the table, while the Mariners still find themselves searching for their first win of the season.
Interestingly enough, for the Mariners to pull a win out of this one won't just give them 3 points, but also snap Sydney's 9 match undefeated streak against Central Coast. The last time the Mariners beat the reigning champions was way back in March 2014 in Gosford, where they will be facing off tonight in the hopes of their first 3 points of the year. Sydney might not have much to worry about so far, but they simply can't take this game for granted, and I'm sure Graham Arnold will keep his team in line.
I'm not saying Central Coast have the upper hand against the superstar Sydney squad, but crazier things have happened in football.
Jets looking to maintain hot start to the season
The third- placed Newcastle Jets will be hoping to keep their unbeaten streak alive Saturday, when they take on Adelaide United this weekend. United, who will be playing in the FFA Cup final in just over a week, will be looking to turn their luck around after two scoreless defeats in the past two weeks.
Their attack will be boosted this week with the inclusion of Baba Diawara, who has been plagued by injury and fitness struggles this season. United who have only scored 5 goals this season will need to find form in front of goal if they hope to beat the Jets, who are currently leading the league with 13 goals from 5 matches.
This week Jets skipper, Nigel Boogaard, will become just the 23rd player to reach 200 games in the A-league. It is only fitting that Boogaard's 200th game is played at Coopers Stadium, against a team he played 98 of these games for. The former Red will be hoping for a big win on his return to Coopers Stadium.
The race to get sacked
Kevin Muscat and John Aloisi are both in dire straits, despite both having been previously touted as potential Socceroos candidates.
Brisbane and Melbourne are in something of a crisis very early in this campaign. Brisbane's Dad's Army have failed expectations almost every round, while Melbourne look like the best puzzle that's yet to be solved. Team chemistry seems to be working in Aloisi's favour, but the Victory struggle to look like a cohesive unit at times, maybe too many good players results in a lot of egos on the pitch?
There's one thing that's evidently clear, and it's that these coaches are coming under heavy fire. Aloisi for his recruitment strategies and Muscat for being unable to select the right squad on match day. This game represents a life line to their job security. A negative result for either side will definitely have fans and critics asking questions whether their coach is the right man for the job.
A win by any other name would still smell as sweet.
Phoenix desperate for their first win
We are now 5 games into this seasons Hyundai A-League, and the Phoenix find themselves in unfortunately familiar territory. Having amassed just two points so far this campaign, Wellington find themselves planted to the bottom of the table.
They had a quite fruitful off season, with a new manager and a new star marquee in Dario Vidosic finding their way to the Phoenix prior to the start of the campaign. Despite the hope and optimism the offseason has brought, it looks as if it may be another season of frustration and disappointment for Kalezic's men.
They will have a big advantage playing at home, with their record at Westpac Stadium being much more impressive than their record away. Their first win of the season is desperately needed to restore the faith their fans have placed in them, faith that has endured even as the team stood on the brink of collapse last year.
An embarrassing 3-0 loss to Newcastle, featuring one of he most comical goals conceded in A-League history, will have the Phoenix low on confidence, which may make it difficult to snatch their first win of the season against a quality Perth Glory side.
Gombau faces tough first test
The story of the season so far has certainly been City's sterling start, which was superbly snapped by a scrappy Sydney side.
It remains to be seen if this was a sign of things to come or merely a bump in the road for Melbourne City, who will look to quell their doubters with a win against Western Sydney. Not that anyone noticed their loss to Sydney what with TimCahillAnkleMania gripping the nation.
They will be without Cahill for this clash as the star travels to Honduras with a team of medical specialists brought along simply to protect his ankle with their life.
The loss of Cahill should not be felt too strongly however, as Ross McCormack and Bruce Kamau have been providing plenty of goals throughout the season. Their attacking firepower should still be in fine form.
The Wanderers play their second consecutive game in Melbourne after last weekends frustrating draw to Melbourne Victory. They'll be looking to make amends for lost chances last week by snatching all three points. Having a full time manager now surely must help their cause.