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Wellington V Perth
AMI STADIUM, WALTHAM, CHRISTCHURCH, 9 NOVEMBER 2013
|1||HALF TIME SCORE||1|
|2||SHOTS ON GOAL||5|
Ninth-placed Wellington Phoenix will be out for their first win of the A-League season when they welcome Perth Glory to AMI Stadium, Christchurch. We’ll have live scores and updates from 3.00pm AEDT.
Those who tipped the Phoenix to finish last this season – and there are many – will be nodding knowingly with the Nix picking up just two points in their opening four matches.
But numbers don’t paint the entire picture, and those who have seen the yellow and black this season would know that the results probably belie the performances so far.
Defensive lapses gift-wrapped from Wellington gift-wrapped Melbourne Victory a three-goal head start at Etihad Stadium on Monday niht before goals from Jeremy Brockie and Paul Ifill brought the visitors back into the match, and they were unlucky not to get a point in the end.
Draws against Western Sydney and Newcastle followed a 2-1 loss in Round 1, where the Phoenix led before Brisbane stole all three points with a stoppage-time winner.
Thanks to a scheduling change, Ernie Merrick will be able to select Ben Sigmund, Andrew Durante, Leo Bertos, Jeremy Brockie and Glen Moss before they head off for All Whites duty in Mexico, and Costa Rican Kenny Cunningham could also come back in.
Perth make the arduous journey across to Christchurch unbeaten in their past three matches, having drawn 0-0 at Newcastle before recording consecutive 1-0 wins against Melbourne Heart and Sydney FC.
Alastair Edwards hasn’t quite yet got his squad firing but with seven points from 12 they have the luxury of building off a solid base.
After starting on the bench last Saturday, Shane Smeltz could come into the starting XI to lead the line with Sidnei Sciola, but Edwards will be without Daniel De Silva, who misses with an ankle injury.
Phoenix have had the better of Glory over the years, winning 10 of 20 matches between the two including a 2-1 win at Perth back in March.
On recent form this appears to be one for the visitors, but in front of what should be a good crowd in Christchurch the home side might sneak an upset here.