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Adelaide United and Newcastle Jets are set to end Round 23 of the A-League in fine style at Coopers Stadium on Sunday night. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, with the ball first rolling at 6:20pm (AEDT).
Adelaide United have been a hot and cold team in recent weeks, winning three and losing four in their last seven games.
They have been an entertaining team to watch, scoring the fourth most goals in the league but conceding the second most, but have conceded 12 goals in their last three games and are coming up against a Newcastle side who are seeming to gel in the attack.
However, they will be boosted by the return of star winger Ben Halloran, who signed a two-year contract extension with the Reds early last week.
Newcastle Jets are coming off a bye following a surprising 2-1 win over Perth Glory. They also have recently mutually terminated Matt Ridenton’s contract. The 24-year-old holding midfielder has played 30 games across two years with the club. Part of the reason Ridenton’s contract has been terminated is to allow an extra visa spot at the club.
Ridenton’s ready-made replacement, Joe Ledley, has been announced in the squad for the first time this weekend after moving to Newcastle two weeks ago.
Bernie Ibini also may be in for a start after playing 30 minutes off the bench two weeks ago, while Wes Hoolahan will most likely be given his first start in Newcastle colours after his second consecutive appearance off the bench.
Newcastle has been talking up this fixture as they look for a win to keep their increasingly slim finals hopes going, with Johnny Koutroumbis stating that Newcastle is a “different beast” after the bye, and Bobby Burns saying that “Adelaide is well beatable”.
My score prediction is 2-2, but if Adelaide defends anywhere near the level they did against Western United, I can see Newcastle comfortably winning.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, with the tie kicking off at 6:20pm (AEDT).
Kick-off: 6:20pm (AEDT)
Venue: Coopers Stadium, Adelaide
TV: Fox Sports
Online: MyFootball Live App, Kayo Sports
Odds: Adelaide $2.30, draw $3.75, Newcastle $2.88
Last five meetings: Adelaide 4, draw 1, Newcastle 0
Overall: Adelaide 13, draw 10, Newcastle 8
Adelaide United squad
2. Michael Marrone, 4. Ryan Strain, 5. Michaël Maria, 6. Stefan Mauk, 7. Ryan Kitto, 8. Riley McGree, 10. James Troisi, 11. Kristian Opseth, 14. George Blackwood, 17. Nikola Mileusnic, 18. Lachlan Brook, 20. Paul Izzo (gk), 22. Michael Jakobsen (c), 23. Jordan Elsey, 26. Ben Halloran, 27. Louis D’Arrigo, 29. Kusini Yengi, 31. Mirko Boland, 40. Dakota Ochsenham (gk), 49. Mohamed Toure
Newcastle Jets squad
1. Glen Moss (gk), 2. Bobby Burns, 3. Jason Hoffman, 4. Nigel Boogaard (c), 6. Steven Ugarkovic, 7. Roy O’Donovan, 8. Wes Hoolahan, 9. Abdiel Arroyo, 10. Dimi Petratos, 11. Nick Fitzgerald, 16. Matt Millar, 17. Joe Ledley, 18. Johnny Koutroumbis, 19. Kosta Petratos, 20. Lewis Italiano (gk), 21. Bernie Ibini, 28. Pat Langlois, 29. Connor O’Toole, 32. Angus Thurgate, 44. Nikolai Topor-Stanley