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Australian players around the globe: Team of the week

Roar Rookie
1st April, 2024
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Plenty of Aussies impressed in the final week of March, showing their talents off abroad and in their backyard. Here’s the best XI of the lot.

Goalkeeper

James Delianov: 4-1 win for Adelaide United against Western United. Full game played, six saves, one key pass.

Delianov continued his uptick in form, further establishing himself as a worthy replacement for the departed Joe Gauci. After seven games without a win, Adelaide have two wins in a row, and even though they have been against the two bottom A-League teams, Delianov deserves some credit for the change.

Left-back

Jordan Courtney-Perkins: 2-0 win for Sydney FC against Central Coast Mariners. 68 minutes played, nine duels won, one key pass, one big chance created, three successful dribbles.

Courtney-Perkins had a stellar performance in Sydney’s huge win over the Mariners. With finals time coming up, Sydney FC will need players like him to step up as they did against Central Coast in order to present themselves as a serious title challenger.

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Centre-back

Alexandar Popovic: 1-0 loss for Gwangju v Pohang Steelers. Full game played, 69/77 passes completed, two duels won, three clearances, 14 passes into the final third.

The promising centre-back had a solid performance against a strong Pohang Steelers team, as he looks to further entrench himself in the Gwangju starting side. Popovic is definitely a player to watch out for as the K-League season progresses.

Centre-back

Alex Grant: 1-0 win for Tianjin Jinmen Tiger against Changchun Yatai. Full game played, two interceptions, one tackle, six duels won, 48/55 passes completed.

The ex-Perth Glory player continued his strong form at the start of his new Chinese adventure, this being just his third game with his new club. Despite this, he seems to have established himself as a starter in the Chinese Super League.

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Right-back

Trent Sainsbury: 5-1 win for Al-Wakrah against Qatar SC. Full game played, one assist, one interception, three key passes, one big chance created, one interception.

Sainsbury had a good game in a rout of Qatar SC, notching an assist as his club continue to fight for AFC Champions League qualification.

Defensive midfielder

Jackson Irvine: 2-1 win for St. Pauli against SV Paderborn. Full game played, one assist, 88 per cent passing, one key pass, one shot.

The dream season for Jackson Irvine and St. Pauli got even better as their win against Paderborn edged them ever closer to Bundesliga promotion. Irvine was once again stellar, anchoring St. Pauli’s midfield and proving again why he has become a crucial member of Die Kiezkicker.

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Central midfielder

Massimo Luongo: 1-0 win for Ipswich Town against Blackburn Rovers. Full game played, 94 per cent passing, two key passes, one dribble, seven duels won.

(Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

In a similar place as Irvine’s St. Pauli, Luongo’s Ipswich can taste promotion. Luongo’s experience and ball playing played a key part in edging out Blackburn, bringing them closer to the promised land.

Attacking midfielder

Stefan Mauk: 4-1 win for Adelaide United against Western United. 82 minutes played, two assists, 24/27 passes, five key passes, two big chances created, four dribbles.

Stefan Mauk played what was probably his best game this season and was instrumental in Adelaide’s victory.

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Left winger

Daniel Arzani: 2-1 win for Melbourne Victory against Perth Glory. Full game played, one assist, six dribbles, two big chances created, ten duels won, seven key passes.

It was a vintage Arzani performance full of creativity and magic moments. An on-form Arzani is a huge asset to the Victory and could be one of the difference-makers as finals time comes around.

Striker

Bruno Fornaroli: 2-1 win for Melbourne Victory against Perth Glory. Full game played, two goals, one key pass, 20/22 passes completed.

Fornaroli’s clinical form in front of goal continued, as Melbourne Victory vied to put pressure on the Mariners for a top two spot. Fornaroli’s two goals take him to seventeen on the season, and the outright top scorer slot.

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Right winger

Nestory Irankunda: 4-1 win for Adelaide United against Western United. 82 minutes played, three goals, seven duels won, two times fouled.

Sports opinion delivered daily 

   

Simply ridiculous. Australia’s biggest footballing talent proved again why the world should be taking note of the future Bayern Munich player. His shot power, speed, and explosiveness are truly beyond his years, and it is time he takes the next step.

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