Preview: Round 17 v Western Sydney Wanderers


Melbourne Victory is aiming to continue its strong recent record against Western Sydney when it visits the Wanderers on Friday.


Victory is unbeaten in its past six games against the Wanderers, who last tasted success in the fixture in December 2015.

Kevin Muscat’s side carries winning form into the Round 17 encounter at ANZ Stadium.

An inspired performance by Leroy George ­– who had three assists – and Kosta Barbarouses’ late winner saw Victory past Perth Glory 3-2 last time out.

For George, 30, it continued an impressive Hyundai A-League campaign during which the attacker has scored three goals and assisted 10.

The 90th-minute winner was Barbarouses’ fifth goal of the league campaign and fourth in his past six games.

Victory attacker James Troisi, who was on the scoresheet against Perth, will miss the trip to Sydney after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season.

However, Victory regains Rhys Williams after the star defender served his one-game ban.

Lawrence Thomas missed Victory’s encounter against Perth due to injury, with his replacement – Matt Acton – producing a good display.

Victory is three points off third and four ahead of Western Sydney, which is sixth and has a game in hand.

The Wanderers are on a four-game unbeaten run heading into the clash.

Player in focus

What they said

“You’ve got to keep your body in really good shape. Not only that, you need to stay mentally strong as well because in my situation, I had to wait a long time and if you can stay positive and have a good attitude, patience, eventually you’ll get an opportunity and it’s about taking it then.” ­– Victory goalkeeper Acton.

Last time

Hyundai A-League 2017/18 Round 5
Melbourne Victory 1-1 Western Sydney Wanderers
Monday, November 6, 2017
Etihad Stadium, Melbourne

A 10-man Victory produced a desperate performance to earn a point against the Wanderers earlier this season.

After Mitch Austin’s red card, Oriol Riera put the Wanderers ahead before the striker had a penalty saved by Thomas.

A Thomas Deng goal in the second half earned Victory a hard-fought point.

Head to head

Round 5, 2017/18: Victory 1-1 Wanderers at Etihad Stadium
Round 26, 2016/17: Wanderers 0-0 Victory at ANZ Stadium
Round 10, 2016/17: Wanderers 0-3 Victory at ANZ Stadium
Round 6, 2016/17: Victory 3-0 Wanderers at Etihad Stadium
Round 25, 2015/16: Victory 2-0 Wanderers at AAMI Park

Match details

Friday, 19 January 2018

Western Sydney Wanderers FC v Melbourne Victory

ANZ Stadium, Sydney Olympic Park

Kick-Off: 7:50 PM (Local) (7:50 PM AEDT)

Referee: Adam Kersey
Assistant Referee 1: James Tesoriero
Assistant Referee 2: Andrej Giev
Fourth Official: Kurt Ams
Video Assistant Referee: Mathew Cheeseman

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 501 from 7.00pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 1 (New Zealand)

Radio Broadcast: (SWR99.9), ABC News on Radio, Grandstand Digital, Online & via the ABC Listen App – A-League Live

Western Sydney Wanderers FC Squad (two to be omitted): 3.Jack CLISBY, 4.Josh RISDON, 6.Marcelo CARRUSCA, 7.Steve LUSTICA, 8.Roly BONEVACIA, 9.Oriol RIERA, 10.Álvaro CEJUDO, 11.Brendon SANTALAB, 15.Kearyn BACCUS, 16.Jaushua SOTIRIO, 19.Mark BRIDGE (c), 20.Vedran JANJETOVIC (Gk), 23.Lachlan SCOTT, 24.Raúl LLORENTE, 25.Chris HERD, 33.Michael THWAITE, 35.Tass MOURDOUKOUTAS, 40.Nick SUMAN (Gk) 
Ins: 4.Josh RISDON (returns from injury), 10.Álvaro CEJUDO (returns from injury), 16. Jaushua SOTIRIO (promoted), 25.Chris HERD (returns from suspension)
Outs: 5.Brendan HAMILL (suspended – 1 match), 34.Kosta GROZOS (not selected)
Unavailable: 18.Robbie CORNTHWAITE (departs club), 2.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS (international duty), 42.Keanu BACCUS (international duty)

Melbourne Victory Squad: 1.Matt ACTON (Gk), 2.Jason GERIA, 4.Rhys WILLIAMS, 5.Mark MILLIGAN, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 8.Besart BERISHA, 9.Kosta BARBAROUSES, 16.Josh HOPE, 18.Matias SANCHEZ, 21.Carl VALERI (c), 22.Stefan NIGRO, 23.Jai INGHAM, 24.Terry ANTONIS, 31.Christian THEOHAROUS, 40.Matthew SUTTON (Gk), 41.Leroy GEORGE
Ins: 4.Rhys WILLIAMS (returns from suspension), 16.Josh HOPE (promoted)
Outs: 3.Dino DJULBIC (released), 10.James TROISI (suspended – 1 week)
Unavailable: 11.Mitch AUSTIN (knee), 17.James DONACHIE (quad), 20.Lawrence THOMAS (Gk) (foot)