City look the side to be with on derby day in Melbourne - click here for our match preview.
This Melbourne derby sees the two sides coming into it in contrasting form, with City winning each of their last three games by four goals, while Victory have lost and failed to score in their last three. As a result, Victory have slipped down to fourth, six points behind leaders the Wanderers and a point behind their city rivals in 3rd. Victory have never previously lost four games in a row in the A League, but with City in good form they’re favourites for this game and there’s a good chance that it could be four wins on the bounce for City and four defeats for Victory.
However, while City have been resounding victors in their last three games, all of these have been against sides in the bottom-four and indeed their other two wins this term both came against the current bottom-two. City have also lost two of their four home games, against the Wanderers and Newcastle, but their home record against the top-four last season was a respectable W2-D2-L2 – those were the only two defeats they suffered at home last term – and they managed to score in five of these six matches.
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This is the fourth away game in a row for the Victory and they’ll be relieved to return to Melbourne, having travelled to Wellington, back across the Tasman to Sydney and then all the way across the country to Perth. Indeed that game at Perth was only on Wednesday so they’ve had little chance to recover in what has been an incredibly gruelling schedule. Having lost just a single away game last season, Melbourne’s record on the road this term reads W1-D1-L4 as they’ve failed to score in five of these matches, all of which had fewer than three goals and they’ve also drawn the first half in five of these games.
Victory have won four of the five Melbourne derbies since the start of last season, but all those wins came at the Etihad Stadium and City won the only game they hosted at AAMI Park. All of City’s home games this season have seen at least three goals as they’re yet to keep a clean sheet but Victory’s lack of goals recently is a real concern. Despite the quality of the sides they’ve beaten being questionable, City have been winning well while Victory are clearly a weary side at the moment and so we’re siding with the home team.