Posted on: 2021-04-30 18:51:04
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Melbourne Victory vs Central Coast Mariners
When: Sunday, May 2 – 4:05 PM AEST
Where: Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Weather: Mostly sunny, 21°C
Melbourne Victory are at the very bottom of the Australian A-League table, with just 14 points after 18 rounds of play. Knowing that only three years ago, they were the ones to lift the domestic trophy, their current run is surprising.
Still, there’s plenty of time for them to improve their table placement, but for that, they need to up their game, especially defense-wise. They’ve been horrible at the back with 47 goals conceded, which is the worst record in the league.
To make things even worse, they’re now facing the high-flying Central Coast Mariners who hold 31 points after 19 games. Just a week ago or so, they were at the top of the table, but they slipped.
Mariners lost two and drew two across their last four outings. Obviously, they’re desperate to get back on the winning track, but can they do it against Melbourne Victory?
Poor Defence Remains Melbourne Victory’s Biggest Concern
Melbourne Victory last beat Central Coast Mariners in April 2019. Victory haven’t won since, but they did put on a decent performance in each of their succeeding three meetings. Their most recent duel that happened in March ended 1-1.
However, that game does not give the right impression of what the 2021 season’s been like for Melbourne Victory. Seeing them concede only one goal has not been something that has happened too often this year. In fact, the Victory have conceded 2+ goals in 11 games this season.
What’s more, their defensive form seems to be on a downward path. This team has conceded a total of 13 goals in their previous three games.
On the bright side, Victory conceded only once against Sydney FC last time out. That came as a result of a meticulous defensive play of the entire team.
They played against the last season’s champions Sydney FC, who were expected to get a big win. However, the Victory performed well in that game, particularly their goalie Matt Acton, who saved 9 of 10 Sydney’s shots on goal. They also had a fair share of attempts on the opposition goal, although almost all of those went wide.
Will the Poor Form of Central Coast Mariners Continue?
Despite holding onto a high place in the standings, the Mariners haven’t been playing well of late. They won only two points in their previous four games, one of which saw them losing 0-4 to Brisbane Roar in their last outing.
Mariners were dreadful in that match, which can be explained by the fact that their forward Marcos Urena picked up a red card in the 62nd minute. What can’t be explained is why they allowed two goals in the first half.
Melbourne Victory vs Central Coast Mariners Betting Picks
At first glance, the Mariners look like the favorites. However, everyone needs to keep in mind that the Victory are the former champions of the Australian A-League. It wasn’t a long time ago when they were in the possession of the trophy and most of the players who let the team to the title are still in the squad.
The last time these two sides met, they parted ways with a 1-1 draw. We think something similar might happen this time as well, but we wouldn’t be surprised if Victory secure all three points. After all, it’s time for them to start playing much, much better!
Prediction: Melbourne Victory +0.50 Asian Handicap
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