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Brisbane Roar vs Wellington Phoenix
When: Saturday, May 1 – 17:00 AEST
Where: Dolphin Stadium in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Weather: Cloudy, 21°C
Wellington Phoenix and Brisbane Roar last met in March, when Brisbane forced a 1-1 draw with a late 86th goal. This time out, counting on a late goal won’t cut it against the improved Nix.
That said, Brisbane Roar enter this match in excellent form, having won all of their last three bouts. But can the hosts keep their fire going, or will Phoenix fly in to extinguish their flame?
Brisbane Roar in Great Form
Brisbane Roar are 7-5-4 on the season with 26 points. This is good for a seventh spot in the A-League standings.
The hosts are just one point clear of Wellington Phoenix, and one short of catching up to Western United in sixth. Roar must feel confident with their current placement since they still have a game in hand to Western United and have played three less than Wellington Phoenix.
Brisbane Roar have been performing fairly well thus far, and are shaping up as serious playoffs contenders. In 16 games, they have scored 25 and conceded only 17 goals – the least in the league.
It was not, however, until recently when Brisbane found their fire. They have gone undefeated in their last five and enter this match on a three-game winning streak.
That run includes wins against Macarthur FC (2-1), WS Wanderers (2-1), and most recently a 4-0 victory against Central Coast Mariners. All of those games came on the road.
Given that they have faced teams who are going through a rough patch, however, we should take Roar’s success with a grain of salt. What’s more, Brisbane will miss their center-back Tom Aldred, which is a massive blow for the team.
Wellington Phoenix Looking to Keep Their Wheels Spinning
Wellington Phoenix are 7-4-8 on the season but are undefeated in their last four. That run saw them draw with Western United (1-1), and pick up all three points against Adelaide United (2-1), Perth Glory (3-1), and Western United (3-2) in their first clash.
Much of Phoenix’s success this term was due to their potent attack. The Nix have scored 32 goals in 19 games, as well as 13 in eight away games.
In their eight away outings, Wellington Phoenix have scored at least once in all but one game, which was a shock 0-2 loss to Melbourne Victory in February. Since then, the Nix beat Newcastle Jets (2-0) and Perth Glory (3-1), lost to WS Wanderers (3-4) and drew with Western United (1-1).
Despite Phoenix’s less than impressive away record, they looked good against the no.2 best home team Western United (1-1) last week. They have also not tasted defeat in their last four outings, which suggests the Nix have found their stride just in time to claw their way inside the top-six.
Unlike Roar, Wellington Phoenix won’t be missing any key players, however, rotation players in center-back Luke DeVere and winger Rene Piscopo are both out with injuries.
Brisbane Roar vs Wellington Phoenix Betting Picks
Brisbane have won six this season, while Wellington managed only one more in three more attempts. Regardless, both sides are in a solid spot to make one last push for a top-six finish – that is if they manage to pull through the remainder of the matches.
Putting them side-by-side, it’s hard to pick a winner, however, we like the visitors more. Although their record of late might not look as flashy as that of Brisbane, the Nix have impressed with their performance against Adelaide United on Sunday.
Despite going down 0-1, they showed resistance and clawed their way to a 2-1 victory. This goes to show Wellington Phoenix are hungry to win games, and traits like that should tip the scale – of an otherwise close match – in their favor.
Prediction: Wellington Phoenix +0.25 Asian Handicap