Melbourne Heart return home after a poor performance in Wellington, while Adelaide travel to AAMI Park after an equally deplorable showing against Brisbane. Who will crack first?
|By GOAL AUSTRALIA
Walker, Gerhardt, Colosimo, CoyneKalmar, Garcia, Thompson
Germano, Babalj, Williams
Bowles, Boogaard, Fyfe, Cassio
Vidosic, McKain, Carrusca, RamsayDjite, Juric
Heart's performance was almost as inexcusable given they played Sydney FC off the park a week prior only to stumble, yet again, on the road.
The Reds were nothing short of dismal at Hindmarsh Stadium against the Roar and lucky to escape with only a 1-0 loss. Jittery and unsure on the ball, Adelaide looked a shadow of the side that jockeyed for top spot on the table earlier in the season.
In more bad news, Osama Malik's red card sees him suspended against Heart. Adelaide's most important player Dario Vidosic is a doubt after coming off at training on Tuesday with an ankle injury, but should start. Defender John McKain is available again after his red card against Wellington ruled him out last week, while attacking duo Bruce Djite and Fabio Ferreira are pushing hard to return from injury.
Iain Fyfe could also be called into the starting XI.
Adelaide's slump has seen them collect only four points in their past seven games and the fact goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic proved to be their best player against Brisbane said it all.
John Aloisi's Heart will be thankful of a return home, where they have won their past five matches.
The former Australia international has close to a fully fit squad to select from, including captain Fred, who has been operating off the bench in recent weeks.
Josip Tadic is back in the squad after recovering from injury, but he will feature off the bench if at all.
Heart are becoming notoriously hard to beat at AAMI Park.
And although they were poor in Dunedin, they are a different proposition altogether in Melbourne.
The Reds are in a somewhat of a rut with only one win in their past seven games and have some key absentees in Vidosic, Malik and Bruce Djite.
Last Saturday was one of their poorest home performances in a long while and they must show marked improvement if they are to take something back to Adelaide on Monday.