The Western Sydney Wanderers will be looking to mark the beginning of the new calendar year in style, when they host Central Coast Mariners at Parramatta Stadium on Thursday night.
The Wanderers have ended 2014 without a win in the current season, following a disappointing 1-0 loss to Wellington Phoenix on Sunday evening, and have only three points against their name as the year comes to a close.
The upside for Wanderers’ fans is the form of the side, with only poor showings against Melbourne Victory in Round 1, and more recently Adelaide United, and the Wellington match was another with plenty of opportunities for goal scoring.
Coach Tony Popovic has himself been the centre of attention in recent days, with suggestions he could be returning to the English Premier League, as Manager of his former EPL club Crystal Palace. Popovic has dismissed the rumours, and it appears as though Palace will sign a current English Manager as a replacement, ensuring the Wanderers’ boss remains at Parramatta.
Popovic will be without two key players for this week’s match, as central defender Matthew Spiranovic and striker Tomi Juric will be in the Australian side for the upcoming Asian Cup campaign. However, the form of Brendan Hamill and others in the defensive line, along with the return of captain Nikolai Topor-Stanley from a one game suspension will ease his concerns.
Popovic will be wanting to see more accuracy in front of goal when they host the Mariners, with plenty of chances being created in most matches this season, but few being converted into goals for the club.
The Wanderers will know Central Coast will be difficult to account for, with an earlier meeting this season ending in a 1-1 draw at Parramatta, and a similar scoreline won’t be acceptable for the home side. .
Make sure you join Mike Shean, Matt Connellan and Will Gotsis for the call from 7pm on Thursday night, with kickoff at 7.30pm, and the match will be broadcast live on www.893fm.com.au for those not at the ground.
Your home for YOUR Western Sydney Wanderers is 2GLF Football…89.3FM and www.893fm.com.au. COYW