Kicking off a weekend of A-League that could go some way to deciding the finals places, the Newcastle Jets host the Brisbane Roar
|By GOAL AUSTRALIA
Brillante, Regan, Ritter, Gallaway
Caravella, Bridges, ZadkovichGriffiths, Heskey, Taggart
Franjic, Donachie, Smith, Stefanutto
Nichols, Brattan, LusticaHalloran, Berisha, Broich
This looms as a pivotal weekend - and fixture - in the finals race, with sixth-placed Newcastle Jets taking on the seventh-placed Brisbane Roar.
The two teams are separated by just two points.
While both sides have struggled for consistency for the majority of the season, they do head into this clash on the back of crucial 2-0 wins.
The Jets saw off fellow top-six hopefuls Melbourne Heart last Friday while goals to Steven Lustica and Besart Berisha ensured Brisbane got the job done at home to Wellington on Sunday.
It should mean that both sets of players come into this contest with renewed confidence and, as a result, neither coach is likely to tinker too much with their sides.
Jets coach Gary van Egmond is likely to go with the same XI that started in the win against Melbourne Heart, with English veteran Michael Bridges to continue in a playmaking role. Midfielders James Brown and Andrew Hoole have been named in the preliminary squad.
Visitors Brisbane, meanwhile, will regain right-back Ivan Franjic after he recovered from concussion, while Matt Jurman and Henrique are among the other inclusions back in the squad.
Mitch Nichols was a late withdrawal against the Phoenix and should take his place back in the starting XI.
The clubs have met twice already this season, with the home side winning 1-0 on both occasions, which augurs well for the Jets.
There should be very little between these two sides, especially with so much at stake.
It will be hard-fought, willing and extremely tense.
While Brisbane have a strong record in Newcastle and are coming off a crucial win, they have not been overly convincing.
The Jets have only won one of their past five matches, they look a far stronger proposition at home, and could be considered the more likely because of that fact alone.