Melbourne Victory have the chance to break into the top six when they take on Central Coast Mariners to conclude A-League Round 14 action on Sunday night.
Victory vs Mariners kicks off at 6.00pm AEDT at Central Coast Stadium. The game will be broadcast live on Fox Sports in Australia.
After a slow start to the season, Victory appear to be finally clicking into gear – can they register their third win on the bounce to potentially surge into the top six?
It was a rough beginning to life at Victory for Marco Kurz, but his charges are riding some positive momentum into this clash, last tasting defeat on December 8 against Western United.
Since then, Victory have beaten Melbourne City in a big derby triumph and throttled Newcastle by a 4-0 scoreline last week, either side of a bye and a draw with the in-form Wellington Phoenix.
Unbeaten against the Mariners since 2013, Victory will be confident of extending that unbeaten run this week.
Central Coast have generally improved compared to their last couple of wooden spoon seasons – and they’ve picked up some big scalps this season against the likes of Adelaide and Perth.
However, they’ve taken just three points from their last 15 matches, and if results don’t go their way this round, they could find themselves bottom of the table again.
It would be a frustrating development for Central Coast, but they remain in the finals race and another upset win over Victory would be an enormous boost for their chances.
But, as mentioned, the Mariners haven’t beaten Victory in seven years and have lost their last four meetings, conceding 14 goals in that time span. I expect to see a lot of goals again, but Victory should continue their winning ways.
Melbourne Victory – $1.96
Central Coast Mariners – $3.55
Draw – $3.55
– Mariners haven’t defeated Victory since 2013
– Victory have won their last four encounters
– Victory have kept more clean sheets than any other side this season (five)