Goals look guaranteed when Brisbane Roar host the Mariners on Saturday evening.
The Roar were impressive 3-1 winners at Sydney last weekend to keep the pressure on the Wanderers at the top of the table and a win here would see Brisbane move above them ahead of their big game with Victory later. The Mariners picked up an excellent 3-1 away win of their own in Wellington as they look to climb off the bottom spot and now trail the Jets and Phoenix by just four points.
Brisbane went into the Sydney game under pressure, having lost their last two against Victory and Adelaide whilst conceding eight goals in the process, but they bounced back to form resoundingly. Their home record this season is an impressive W6-D1-L1, with that sole defeat coming against Adelaide and a draw against City. They’ve managed just two clean sheets, with both teams scoring in six of their eight games at the Suncorp Stadium and six also having at least three goals.
They’ve won all four of their home matches against current bottom-four sides, but interestingly all four of these wins were by just the single goal (three were 2-1 wins) and they only led at half-time in one of these games.
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Two of the Mariners’ three wins this season have come against the Phoenix but a 90th minute consolation goal for Wellington means Central Coast are still searching for their first clean sheet of the season. They maintained their good scoring record, however, and as a result both teams have now scored in 15 of their 17 matches this term. On the road, they’d scored exactly once in all seven of their matches heading into the trip to Phoenix, to lose but score in 11 of their last 12 away games going back to last season. At top-four sides since the start of last campaign they’re W0-D0-L9, as they trailed at half-time in five of these defeats, but once again managed to score in eight.
We can expect goals in this one given both sides’ somewhat leaky defences but good scoring form, with both teams to score as short as 1.6, while Over 2.5 goals is just 1.4. Though first-choice striker O’Donovan is still suspended, the Mariners managed to score three goals in his absence last weekend and the best bet in this one looks to be Brisbane to win but the Mariners to find the net yet again this season, with the 2-1 correct score worth a punt at 9.0. That was the scoreline in four of the Mariners’ last six trips to top-four sides and four of the last five times Brisbane have hosted a bottom-four side.