Round 9 Match Preview- Western Sydney Wanderers vs. Brisbane Roar

**The following is a re-post of something I posted over at Football Central- originally dated 04/12/15


Round 9 of the A-League see’s Brisbane play their third game of the campaign on the road against the Western Sydney Wanderers, and while things figure to be relatively quiet off the park due to the league wide active supporter boycotts on the park it looks to be an intriguing contest.

These two sides have already met twice this season, with Brisbane winning the more recent of the clashes 3-1 on the opening night of the new season after the Wanderers were victorious in the FFA Cup. Since then both of these sides have gone on to have solid starts to the season, with both looking like they will be a factor in games at the business end of the season.

Going into this game the Wanderers are on a five game winning streak, their best since their debut season when they won eleven in a row to clinch the Premiership at the first attempt. The driving force of this recent form is the resurgence of former Brisbane midfielder Mitch Nichols, who’s scored four goals already this season including in the last meeting between the two sides.

Brisbane meanwhile arrive on the back of consecutive 1-1 draws which have seen the Roar slide from 1st to 3rd on the competition table as they continue their month long road trip due to the concerts and field refurbishments at Suncorp Stadium.

Despite playing some impressive attacking football in recent weeks, Brisbane have been unable to capitalise on their chances in the last couple of weeks. The creativity however is there, with Thomas Broich and Dimitri Petratos having strong games last week, before changes in the second half saw Hervas come onto the park and his combinations with Corona and Broich nearly earned the Roar a late winner.

On this week specifically, the midfield battle this week looms as the key, as it does in a lot of game between two good sides. Corona was outstanding in his debut last time out against the Wanderers, however since then Dimas and Andreu have emerged as one of the best midfield pairs in the competition this season, so it figures to be a tougher task this time around. Matt McKay, who missed the round 1 win due to National Team commitments will be back however to give Corona greater support in the middle of the park, however Javier Hervas will miss the game with a minor injury.

Brisbane’s set pieces were also influential in the outcome of the clash last time around, with goals from corners to Daniel Bowles and Jamie Maclaren ensuring the win for the visiting side. While it’s unlikely the set pieces will be as influential this time around, the Roar have scored three of their thirteen goals this season from corners.

Brisbane Roar squad

3) Shane Stefanutto, 5) Corey Brown, 6) Jerome Polenz, 7) Corona, 8) Steven Lustica, 9) Jamie Maclaren, 10) Henrique, 13) Jade North, 14) Daniel Bowles, 15) James Donachie, 16) Devante Clut, 17) Matt McKay, 19) Jack Hingert, 21) Jamie Young, 22) Thomas Broich, 23) Dimitri Petratos, 28) Brandon Borrello, 36) Andre Jannese.
*Two to be omitted*

Western Sydney Wanderers Squad

1) Dean Bouzanis, 3) Scott Jamieson, 4) Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 6) Mitch Nichols, 7) Romeo Castelen, 8) Dimas, 9) Federico Piovoccari, 10) Dario Vidosic, 11) Brendan Santalab, 12) Scott Neville, 16) Jaushua Sotirio, 17) Alberto, 18) Andreu, 19) Mark Bridge, 20) Andrew Redmayne, 21) Jacob Pepper, 22) Jonathan Aspropotamitis, 34) Mario Shabow.
*Two to be omitted*

Brisbane will likely continue with an unchanged starting side for the third game running, however with Henrique now nearing full fitness time may be running out for players in the front third to guarantee their starting places.
The one change to the side will be on the bench with Javier Hervas set to miss the trip to Sydney due to muscle tightness. That should open the door for Devante Clut to get another opportunity in the first team squad, with defenders Corey Brown and Jerome Polenz likely to have to wait for their chance.

Expected Brisbane XI

Young, Hingert, North, Bowles, Stefanutto, Corona, McKay, Petratos, Borrello, Broich, Maclaren.
Subs– Jannese, Donachie, Lustica, Clut, Henrique.
Omitted– Brown, Polenz.

The return from injury of Mark Bridge and a weeks rest for marquee Federico Piovoccari significantly boosts the attacking options for Tony Popovic and creates a selection dilemma. Both are likely to start the game, with Vidosic and Santalab the most likely to make way, while youngsters Sotirio and Shabow could find themselves on the outside looking in. The rest is likely to remain the same as the side who beat Central Coast on Sunday.

Expected Western Sydney XI
Redmayne, Neville, Alberto, Topor-Stanley, Jamieson, Dimas, Andreu, Castelen, Nichols, Bridge, Piovoccari.
Subs– Bouzanis, Aspropotamitis, Pepper, Vidosic, Santalab.
Omitted– Sotirio, Shabow.

Recent form

Brisbane: DDWDW
Western Sydney: WWWWW

Top Scorer

Brisbane: Brandon Borrello/Jamie Maclaren (4)
Western Sydney: Mitch Nichols (4)

All-time record against Western Sydney Wanderers



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