Perth Glory will take on Adelaide United for the second time this season at nib Stadium in Perth on Saturday. After losing out to Adelaide 3-1 in the first round due to uncharacteristic defensive errors, Perth will be out for the Reds’ blood this time around.
Glory’s star signing – former French International William Gallas arrived in Perth early this week, and will most certainly play a part in the contest according to coach Alistair Edwards.
Whether he is to start or not is still a mystery, but the presence of Gallas’ name on the team sheet alone will no doubt play on the minds of United’s players.
Adelaide are boosted by the return of key players Bruce Djite and Cassio after long spells out with injuries. Both players got valuable playing time last week against Newcastle Jets off the bench and will be interesting to see if Josep Gombau thrusts them into the starting line up or not.
Perth have started off the 2013/2014 season well with two wins, two draws and only one loss to the team they face this weekend. Things are starting to kick into gear for the Glory after some dominant displays accompanied by three clean sheets in a row and an attractive attacking style of football.
Add William Gallas to their defence and Perth are a real contender for the finals this year.
Adelaide on the other hand have drew against Melbourne Victory and only winning a solditary game so far this season against Perth. As expected Gombau has brought an possession based attacking style of football to the club similar to that of Perth Glory’s, but with 4 points out of five games people are starting to question whether the “as long as we play good football it doesn’t matter if we lose” mentality of Gombau is really good enough.
Perth grabbed a great point on possibly the worst traveling fixture of the league against Wellington in Christchurch. After a lackluster display against Sydney FC the week before, the Glory – although conceding in the 4th minute, displayed a wonderful complete performance. Perth should have possibly grabbed all three points after finishing the game with attacking forays on Glen Moss’s goal, ending the game with a total of 15 goal attempts to Wellington’s 11.
Adelaide were outdone at home against an inspired Jets team who have been under the microscope since the opening day. United had great mounts of possession throughout the game, but were unable to pose any real threat to Newcastle’s defence.
A negative to also come from the game for United was the dismissal of Nigel Boogaard for the second time this season. However, a positive for a Glory side who will look to take advantage of his absence.
The key men:
Jeronimo – A true poacher of a striker. Scored twice against Perth in the first round and is dangerous with anything in and around the box.
Cirio – The Spaniard looks a great footballer with quick feet and very direct. Can cause any defence problems.
Carrusca – Epitomizes the role of a number 10. Fantastic on the ball and creates chances not only for himself, but for his teammates.
Sciola – The quick and skillful Brazilian has taken the league by storm and has been in the top 3 players of every match so far. An out and out winger who will cause fullbacks havoc. He assisted Ryo Nagai’s equalizer against Wellington last week.
R.Edwards – A classy number 10 who will run all day. Fantastic passing ability who is able to find teammates with great through balls. Works well with Maclaren.
Jamie Maclaren – The young striker has one goal to his name so far this season, and will be looking to add to that tally this week. Was unfortunate not to seal the win for Glory against Wellington last week, but shows immense ability and potential. Makes great runs off the ball.
Who can forget William Gallas – Capped 84 times for football powerhouse France and spent 12 years in England playing for Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal – his record speaks for himself. The 36 year old is a world class player and will add invaluable experience and talent to Perth’s already solid back four.
Both teams have met 24 times previously. Perth coming out on top only just with 10 wins to Adelaide’s 9 and 5 draws between each other.
Kick off is at 2.30pm WST
Perth Glory Squad: 1.Daniel VUKOVIC (GK), 2.Jack CLISBY, 3.Brandon O’NEILL, 4.Ryan EDWARDS, 5.Steve PANTELIDIS, 6.Cameron EDWARDS, 7.Jacob BURNS (c), 8.Ryo NAGAI, 10.Jamie MACLAREN, 14.Steven McGARRY, 16.Sidnei SCIOLA MORAES, 17.Chris HAROLD, 18.Jack DUNCAN, 21.Scott JAMIESON, 23.Michael THWAITE, 24.Matthew DAVIES, 36.William GALLAS
***One to be omitted***
Ins: 17.Chris HAROLD, 36.William GALLAS
Outs: 9.Shane SMELTZ (International Duty – 1 week)
Adelaide United squad: 1.Eugene GALEKOVIC (GK) (c), 4.Jon McKAIN, 5.Osama MALIK, 6.CASSIO, 7.JERONIMO, 8.ISAIAS, 9.Sergio CIRIO, 10.Marcelo CARRUSCA, 11.Bruce DJITE, 12.Antony GOLEC, 13.Steven LUSTICA, 15.Jacob MELLING, 17.Awer MABIL, 19.Jake BARKER-DAISH, 20.Paul IZZO (GK), 21.Tarek ELRICH, 22.Fabio FERREIRA, 23.Jordan ELSEY
***Two to be omitted***
Ins: 12.Antony GOLEC, 15.Jacob MELLING, 19.Jake BARKER-DAISH, 23.Jordan ELSEY (all promoted)
Outs: 3.Nigel BOOGAARD (suspended – 1 game), 18.Michael ZULLO (International duty – 1 week)
Unavailable: 14.Cameron WATSON (suspended – 1 game), 16.Daniel BOWLES (ankle – 4 weeks)
* * Perth Glory fans come and support the women’s side at Percy Doyle Reserve 6pm kick off and free entry