We are going back to Australia, where Wellington Phoenix and Brisbane Roar will play a match in the 9th round of A-League at Wellington Regional Stadium on 22nd December.
The home side, Wellington Phoenix are currently 6th in the league, which is a good result for a team that did not have the best start of the season. They are holding an overall record of 3-2-3, 2-1-2 in the last 5 games and are currently on 2 games winning streak. In the course of the last 2 games, they have defeated Sydney FC (1:3) and Central Coast Mariners (2:0). The win against Central Coast was expected, however a 1:3 win against Sydney FC, a team that not long ago was sitting at the top spot in the league is impressive. Looking at their most recent match against Central Coast, Wellington scored an opener only 9 minutes into the match and added their 2nd goal in the 45th minute. In the first half, Phoenix had 50% ball possession, 5 goal attempts and 2 shots on goal, whereas Mariners had 4 goal attempts but no shots on goal. Looking at the 2nd half, Mariners woke up and dominated with 11 goal attempts, however, only 2 were shot towards the goal. We did not see any goals in the 2nd half, which meant Wellington managed to hold on to the lead with slightly more defensively approach in the 2nd half. Final score: 2:0.
The visiting side, Brisbane Roar, are currently second to last team in the A-League. With their 1-3-4 this season, they are far from impressive, in fact their form is rather poor. In the last 5 games, Roar played a draw against WS Wanderers (2:2), won against Melbourne City (2:0), but then went on to lose 3 games in a row; Adelaide (2:1), Jets (2:0) and most recently against Melbourne Victory (2:4). The last match against Melbourne Victory was an exciting one to watch with a total of 6 goals being scored. The scoring started only 13 minutes in, when Victory got an early lead, however, it did not last long, as Roar were awarded a penalty kick in 27th minute, which was successfully converted into a goal, and the match was again levelled. But only 5 minutes after, Victory scored another goal and another one 8 minutes after that. At 40th minute mark, VIctory was up by 2 goals (1:3). As you might have guessed, there were more goals to come. In the 42nd minute, Victory scored an own goal but fixed their mistake with another goal in 45’+2. With that, the scoreboard showed a 2:4 result before heading into the second half, with teams shooting a total of 9 shots on goal and had a combined 13 goal attempts. Sadly the second half was not even close to being as interesting and exciting to watch. Victory was a dominant force in the 2nd half with 81% ball possession and 4 goal attempts, however no shots on goal. Roar, on the other hand, had 19% ball possessions, no attempts on goal and no shots on goal. We could argue that the red card Brisbane player received in the 21st minute was the cause of the final result, however, I would not be able to explain that a team with 25% ball possession deserved a win. Final score: 4:2
These two teams have met once this year, on 28th of October, when the match ended 0:0. This time, the teams will play at Wellington Stadium, where Phoenix holds a 2-1-2 record. The 2 losses they suffered were against WS Wanderers (0:3) and Adelaide United (1:3). However, that was when Wellington was on a losing streak and from what we have seen, they have improved in the past 3 games. Since then, Phoenix played a draw against league leaders Perth Glory (1:1) and won against Mariners (2:0). Brisbane, on the other hand, are suffering a losing streak of their own, losing 3 games in a row. This season, they have only accumulated 1 point on the road and are currently 0-1-3 in away games. The biggest issue I have with Brisbane is their poor performance in their last game. In fact, it was worse than poor. With only 26% ball possession they were completely dominated by Melbourne and I do believe that will translate into this match, which means they will not perform well against Wellington Phoenix who are in a great form.
Prediction: Wellington Phoenix -0.50 Asian Handicap
Odds: 2.42 SBOBET