Just like that, we are already a third of the way through the 21-22 A-League season, and what a year it’s been so far. Matchday 9 kicks off on Saturday night this week and has just three games due to some COVID restructuring. As always, the Sunday League Shark has his best bets of the week below.
AAMI Park, Saturday 8th January, 7.45pm (AEDT)
What a turnaround it’s been for the Melbourne Victory this season. After finishing dead last on the A-League table for their worst ever performance last season, they currently sit atop the ladder with a 4-1-1 record through the opening six games. They have scored the most goals in the league with 11 through six games and they are coming off a fantastic 3-1 win over Western United on Boxing Day.
Adelaide United snapped a five game winless streak on the weekend with a 4-0 demolition job over the Wellington Phoenix. It’ll be a much tougher test this week though as they face the Victory for the second time in just a few weeks. The two teams squared off on the 17th of December and Melbourne came away 2-1 winners on the road.
Melbourne will start as strong favourites at home and it’s hard to find a reason to bet against them here. They have been near impeccable through the season so far, with their only slip up coming agains the Perth Glory back at the start of December. They will be on the back of a full week of rest when they line up on Saturday night and they have won 7 of their last 11 home games against Adelaide.
AAMI Park, Sunday 9th January, 6.45pm (AEDT)
The final game of Round 9 sees Melbourne City hosting the Western Sydney Wanderers. Western Sydney are in 9th place on the A-League table with a 1-2-2 record. They have scored just four goals throughout their five games so far, the lowest total of any team in the league outside of the Brisbane Roar.
Melbourne City are yet to reach their lofty form from last year, but have looked ominous at times throughout the season so far. They sit in 6th place at the moment with a 2-2-1 record, but have a game in hand over the majority of the teams above them.
I’m leaning towards the home side here. Sure, Melbourne City haven’t looked like the team that won the championship last year, but they still have fantastic pedigree from top to bottom and it’s only a matter of time until they put it together for a complete performance. They have still only lost one game this season after all, so I think they should represent good value at home.
Wellington Phoenix vs Newcastle Jets - Newcastle H2H ($2.40 at Sportsbet)
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