Melbourne City Vs Sydney FC: Match Preview

City-Sydney

Well, City should be heading into this weekend’s game against Sydney FC on the back of a home win. Two goals and 23 shots at goal proved to be not enough, with Central Coast Mariners taking away the win from us in the dying minutes. The old Heart ways of conceding a lead came back to haunt us. It would have been great to see City fight for another goal, like they did against the Roar.

The big positive I took away from last match was Damian Duff. He has been a fantastic pick up for the club this year. What impressed me was when he rushed right up to Ramsey during the second half and gave him a passionate verbal spray about defending that left back area. It’s great seeing how passionate Duff is playing for City.

Stats VS Sydney FC (W/D/L): 4/6/3
(Stats taken from Ultimate A-League web site)

Sydney is one of the in-form sides at the moment and will be tough to beat. They have not lost a match so far this season and in the last few matches have drawn against the other top teams Adelaide and our cross town rivals. Graham Arnold is a great A-League coach and Sydney did well in recruiting him this season.

Melbourne City need to lift for the full 90+ minutes for this match. We have the players, they just need to fight for the win. This match is going to be tough but I don’t see a reason why we couldn’t win it. Dugandzic is in scoring form at last and our new young recruits like Melling and Brown look hungry to impress.

Good news is that we are sitting in sixth spot after six rounds, which at this point in time is a good spot to be. Other teams at the moment are struggling, we just need to keep our form (and keep it for more than one half) and with returning players and our marquee players coming in soon, our side is developing in the right direction.

Checking my magic eight ball with the question “Will Melbourne City win against Sydney?”, the eight ball replied with “Yes – Definitely”. I hope the magic eight ball is right and I’m picking that result too.

Go City!

Melbourne City VS Central Coast Mariners: Preview

City-Mariners

Firstly it was great being able to watch City vs Roar on SBS last Saturday night. Well done to the A-League, Foxtel and SBS for working that out. I am guessing it could be because of the Asian Cup in January there won’t be as many Friday night games as last season.

Anyway, how was last week? The prospect of being Brisbane Roar’s first victim of the season was scary and going by the past history of our club, it seemed certain. But Melbourne City played a good solid match and it was fitting that our club’s first win under the new owners came against the reigning champions. You can read our full review of the match here.

Stats VS Central Coast Mariners (W/D/L): 1/3/8
(Stats taken from Ultimate A-League web site)

Our form against Central Coast, even at AAMI park, has never been good. However, they seem to be a different club this season. The only win for the Mariners so far was in the first round against Newcastle Jets, with the winning goal from Duke in the 90″ minute.

I think I have worked out Melbourne City’s recruitment policy – players have to have beer names! First Duff and now Miller! Liam Miller is on a short loan, with Mooy and Mauk on international duties and Koren, Germano and Murdocca injured.

City took the advantage early last week and held firm in the second half so it will be interesting to see if they can back it up with our first home win for the season. We will need another solid performance over 90 minutes to make sure we get over the struggling Mariners. It would also be fitting to have our first home win over the Mariners seeing that they were the very first team we played in the A-League and we lost that one.

I’m sure all City fans are eager to see a winning home performance from the club, it’s long overdue.

Go City!

Brisbane Roar 1-3 Melbourne City: Match Review

Brisbane-City

It has been a while since we’ve witnessed Melbourne City win an A-League game. In fact, we hadn’t won one since March when we were still known as Melbourne Heart. Fans were losing hope after having plenty of it before the season kicked off. Winless after four games, City had been put under pressure by pundits, the media and its supporters. But it was eight minutes into the match at Suncorp Stadium against the champions of last season, who were without a point this season, when things started to change.

Patrick Kisnorbo’s long ball from defence led to an opportunity that was surprisingly grasped given our history with missed chances. The ball fell to Mate Dugandzic who set up David Williams for the opener. The goal still left City fans feeling that we’d lose the lead, similarly to the past two weeks. However, just two minutes later, the tide had seemed to turn. Erik Paartalu’s brilliant ball played through Dugandzic who this time took it all the way and finished clinically to extend the lead.

Melbourne City fans, including myself, became shocked. The last time we took a two goal lead was incidentally when we won our last game; in the third derby of last season. However, fans continued to expect a comeback from the Roar but they went into the half time break without pulling a goal back.

Aaron Mooy was once again the outstanding performer in the first term and has quickly become a fan favourite due to his hard work and quality on the ball. Andrew Redmayne also impressed as he pulled off a couple of great saves in a half that saw the visitors opt to play a more counter attacking brand of football as opposed to a possession based one that has been utilised as part of the CFG brand.

The second half saw a debut for 19-year-old Jacob Melling who almost scored within seconds as link up play led to a shot on target for the midfielder. A goal finally came for Brisbane as numerous attacks led to their first. It was a rather fortuitous goal as a shot by McKay had come off Borrello’s head forcing a change of direction, leaving Redmayne with no chance.

It was almost inevitable that the home side would score but they never looked like equalising. Melbourne City continued to hang on to a one goal lead until Aaron Mooy started a counter attack as he spun his marker before producing a wonderful pass to James Brown who set up Marc Marino who came on to score his first ever A-League goal. The 18-year-old celebrated along with the City fans as they knew know that three points beckoned.

The final whistle was blown and the first victory as Melbourne City was achieved. It’s a win that has brought confidence to some fans and hopefully the players as the season started horribly. It was a different style employed by John van’t Schip but it proved to be more effective than the past month of football. However, how will JvS go about the round 6 clash with Central Coast who will not leave many gaps in defence unlike the Roar? We’ll find out next Sunday at AAMI Park!

 

Brisbane Roar VS Melbourne City: preview

¡Adiós David Villa and welcome Jesus! Well, that’s how the Herald Sun confirmed yesterday the arrival of Socceroos striker Josh Kennedy. He won’t actually appear for a few months and hopefully by then Melbourne City is still not searching for a saviour.

It was fun watching Villa play, brief(er) though it was, and good luck to him over in New York City. Our team showed promise once again last week, but there’s still lots to work on. You can read our review of the last match, here.

Stats VS Brisbane Roar (W/D/L): 4/2/6
City at Suncorp stadium (W/D/L): 1/1/4
(Stats taken from Ultimate A-League web site)

Brisbane is our next opponent, the cream of the crop, um, well, maybe not this season. They lost a few good men in the pre-season and it’s showing in their results with no wins so far this season. But playing Melbourne City could be their turning point!

We are sure we don’t need to remind our fans that our team is also on a winless streak, far ahead of Brisbane with a tally of ten matches without a win including last season’s horror end. Mark ‘Bozza’ Bosnich highlighted this in his scathing critique of the club this week. We’d like to say again we hope the team steps up for this one in Brisbane, but we share Bozza’s concerns that there are deep problems and old habits that we just can’t shake off yet. Is it a question of our club leadership or simply poor choices in the selection of players? Let the debate continue as patience starts to wear thin.

This is a pressure match for both teams. We want a win of course, we are hoping for a draw, but the outlook isn’t looking good (ok, Ash checked his magic eight ball for an answer to this).

Go City!

Melbourne City 1-2 Adelaide United: Match Review

After suffering a heart breaking loss against Melbourne Victory in the derby a week before, Melbourne City’s fans knew that anything less than three points would be unacceptable against Adelaide at AAMI Park last Friday night.

City went into the game without a win, having only picked up two draws from the first two rounds. David Villa was set to play his final game for the team, as it was announced his initially promised 10-match guest stint was to be cut short. However, whether or not he will return for a few more matches in December has not been made clear, although, it seems highly unlikely that he will.

The home side started exceptionally well as Patrick Kisnorbo headed home from Damien Duff’s corner to take an early lead. It looked to be the day that could revive our poor start to the season but it wasn’t to be. Adelaide equalised late in the second half through Bruce Djite and the hopes of City fans immediately dropped back to what they were before the match.

David Villa provided plenty of magic down the left side throughout the game, particularly around the 70th minute mark as he beat Cirio and Elrich in terrific fashion before Galekovic saved his shot from a tough angle only for Williams to sky the rebound.

Unfortunately, the Spanish superstar couldn’t bail us out for a third time this season as Adelaide United won a penalty in the 80th minute before Carrusca slotted it past Andrew Redmayne for the 2-1 lead. The match was over and it only seemed like last year (oh wait, it was) that we failed to win a match after so many weeks.

Prior to John van’t Schip’s reappointment, John Aloisi led Melbourne Heart to 18 consecutive matches without a win spanning the 2012-13 and the 2013-14 seasons. Despite JvS’ great start in his second spell with the club, cracks started to show when the team went the last six weeks of last season without a win. That streak has extended to 10 as City are yet to gain 3 points from a match this season.

He has neglected to sign natural full-backs to help the defence and it has definitely proven to be a poor decision as opposing teams are finding it easy to attack through either wing to expose the lack of full-back strength in our side. But that is just one of many issues with the team currently.

City face Brisbane who are also winless but a win for our side seems very unlikely considering our poor form.