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A-League: Phoenix must return to winning ways

Wellington Phoenix need to pick up a big three points when they take on Perth Glory on Sunday, while Brisbane Roar face Newcastle Jets in the other A-League fixture.

The final two games of the ‘Unite Round’ take place in Sydney, one at Allianz Stadium, the other at CommBank Stadium.

After Western Sydney Wanderers beat Melbourne City 1-0 and Melbourne Victory fought out a 1-1 draw with Central Coast Mariners, the Phoenix could do with three points to stay in touch at the top of the ladder.

Glory are fighting for their lives at the other end of the ladder and will be out to cause an upset.

Brisbane Roar are on a horror run of four defeats on the spin and need to stop the rot against a Jets side who are one point and one spot below them.

Unite Round has been an exciting one so far and hopefully it can finish on a high on Sunday.

Roar remain on the slide

WhatBrisbane Roar v Newcastle Jets
WhereAllianz Stadium, Sydney
When19:45 (AEDT), Sunday 14th January 2024
How to watchParamount+
OddsBrisbane Roar 2.37, Draw 3.80, Newcastle Jets 2.70

Brisbane Roar have lost four games on the bounce and need to stop the rot quickly if they are to have any chance of making the top six.

After being hammered 8-1 by Melbourne City, they put in a better performance a week later but still lost 2-1 against Sydney FC.

The goals have dried up for Roar and they have scored just three in the last four games.

Newcastle Jets have scored just 18 all season, and we could be in for a low-scoring game at Allianz Stadium and under 2.5 goals in the game can be backed at 2.40.

Apostolos Stamatelopoulos is the leading scorer for the Jets this season with seven goals, while Jay O’Shea and Nikola Mileusnic have four each for Roar.

O’Shea was also on the scoresheet the last time the two teams met and is priced at 3.75 to score at anytime.

Roar have won four of the last five games between the two sides, but on current form the Jets will fancy their chances.

The Jets have lost just once in their last five games, picking up two wins, and had they not conceded nine minutes into stoppage time against Macarthur last week, they would be doing even better.

Barbarousas starring for Nix

WhatPerth Glory v Wellington Phoenix
WhereCommBank Stadium, Sydney
When19:45 (AEDT), Sunday 14th January 2024
How to watchParamount+
OddsPerth Glory 2.87, Draw 3.75, Wellington Phoenix 2.25

Wellington Phoenix remain in the mix at the top of the ladder, but they have not won in the last two and cannot afford to drop any more points on Sunday.

Conceding too many goals has cost them in the last two; they lost 3-1 against Sydney FC before drawing 2-2 with Adelaide United.

They will need to tighten up if they are to have any chance of challenging for the minor premiership.

Thankfully for the Nix they do have Kosta Barbarouses, who scored both goals against Adelaide and now has six for the season.

The forward can be backed at 6.50 to score the first goal.

Talking of goalscorers, Glory would be in even more trouble without Adam Taggart. Glory have scored just 18 goals this season and Taggart has netted seven of them.

The striker is priced at 6.00 to score first in this game.

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