June 21, 2024

A-LeagueSaturday, January 9 from 7.30pm AEST at AAMI Park, Melbourne.

MATCH of the week in the A-League sees Melbourne City hosting the Western Sydney Wanderers at AAMI Park.

The second placed Wanderers have been the form team of the competition after a shaky start to the season.

After their round three loss to Sydney FC, the Wanderer’s have not registered a loss since and are locked on eight wins with league leaders the Brisbane Roar at the top of the table.

The third placed Melbourne City have been one of the surprise packets of the season.

City have become one of the most attacking teams in the league, and with Aaron Mooy feeding the likes of Bruno Fornaroli in the attacking third, it is easy to see why they have scored 15 goals in the last five matches.

City’s Bruno Fornaroli is currently the A-League’s top goal scorer, with 11 goals to his name.

Fornaroli is the $1.72 favourite with Sportsbet to be the A-League’s top goal scorer at the completion of the regular season.

It looms as one of the most important matches of the season and could define who will go into the finals with a realistic shot of winning the title.

Match preview

Odds provided by Sportsbet.com.au

Winner: Western Sydney Wanderers- $2.50

First goal scorer: Federico Piovaccari- $6.50

It is second versus third on Saturday night with City hosting the Wanderers at AAMI Park.

Never has a meeting between these two franchises meant so much to the victor, with the Wanders looking to keep in touch with the Roar at the top of the table while City are looking to bridge that gap.

City were brave last week drawing with Sydney FC 2-2 despite missing several key players, including Johnny Warren Medal favourite Aaron Mooy.

Mooy was a last minute withdrawal against the Sky Blues, with the club citing a hip injury as the cause for concern.

However, scans last week revealed that Mooy had been enduring four broken ribs in his last two appearances against the Jets and Victory.

Sydney FC had information of Mooy’s injury and had planned to target the Socceroo, which may have impacted on City’s reluctance to let their star midfielder take the field.

City manager John van’t Schip did not want to take any risks with one of his key playmakers with finals just around the corner.

“Aaron yesterday got a little hit and reported some soreness and this morning it didn’t improve so we had to take the decision because it’s a very busy schedule and there’s a lot of games still to come that we wouldn’t risk him for this game,” van’t Schip said.

It seems unlikely that the league’s best player will be risked this early in the campaign when his presence will be pivotal if City are to make an impact in the finals.

It is all smooth sailing for Tony Popovic and the Wanderers, with Western Sydney cruising in second position on the back of a ten game win streak.

The Wanderers’ last outing was a 0-0 draw with the improving Adelaide, a game in which Western Sydney will consider themselves unlucky not to come away with full points.

The match should be a fantastic contest, but the big question will be whether or not City can compete with one of the best teams in the league without their key playmaker.

If Mooy is able to take to the field City will be a huge chance at scoring the points, but without him – which seems the most likely scenario – Melbourne will struggle to get through the Wanderers’ strong defence.

Expect the Wanderers’ unbeaten run to stretch to 11 games with a win over City away from home.

A-League specials and promotions for round 13

William Hill are continuing to run their multi insurance across round 10 of the weekend of A-League.

Place a four or more leg multi across the weekend, and if one leg fails, you get your money back – up to $50.

Sportsbet are offering cash back up to $100 if your four or more leg multi bet on the A-league this weekend has only one leg that fails.

Sportsbet are the only bookmaker offering actual cash back to your account rather than a bonus bet so be sure to take full advantage of the generous offer.

Crownbet are also offering a $50 dollar bonus bet on the A-League this weekend.

If you place a four or more leg multi on the Aussie round ball incarnation this weekend and one leg fails, a bonus bet will be credited to your account.

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