In a real clash of styles, visiting Victory will have a tough time breaking down a Wanderers side that has more than held its own in its maiden campaign
WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS
Polenz, T-Stanley, Beauchamp, D'Apuzzo
Trifiro, Poljak, MooyMinniecon, Kresinger, Bridge
Ferreira, Franjic, Leijer, Traore
Finkler, Milligan, CeleskiRojas, Thompson, Nabbout
Before the season, the Wanderers' goal was simply to be competitive.
Seven weeks, in and coach Tony Popovic and his squad will need to re-assess those goals, with the new-boys riding high inside the top six after their impressive 1-0 win on the road against Perth Glory last Sunday.
The fact they achieved that result despite having 10 men for more than half the game shows the Wanderers have the goods to be finals contenders in their debut season.
Popovic will need to make at least one change to his side, with midfielder Youssef Hersi suspended. Tarek Elrich, Shannon Cole, Tahj Minniecon and Labinot Haliti are all likely to vie for the right-wing spot.
Japanese star Shinji Ono has battled a virus this week but is expected to be available, while first-choice midfielder Mateo Poljak is back in the squad.
The Victory are enjoying their best run of form for the season, having lost just one of their past five matches.
They showed tremendous character to come from behind twice last weekend to draw 2-2 with the Central Coast.
But the two-time champions will be without influential attacker Marcos Flores, after he was sent off against the Mariners.
Coach Ange Postecoglou should have a ready-made replacement in Archie Thompson, while midfielder Gui Finkler likely to return after recovering from a groin problem.
This clash brings about a real contrast in styles, with Western Sydney's well-structured and organised defence up against the flair and pace of the Victory's all-out attack.
It makes for what should be an intriguing battle, with whichever side can maximise their strength likely to come out on top.
The loss of Flores is a blow for the visitors but they should be able to cover it with the return of Thompson and the brilliant form of Marco Rojas.