So I’ve been a bit slack with Phoenix banter lately. Excuses range from some monster days at work (Workin’ hard, or hardly workin’), the start of the footy season (Come on! Get in!), all the way back to moving back into my parents place (otherwise known as ‘living the dream’).
In all honesty she’s been busy goin for the last wee while, but at the end of the day the people need their news. You, the public, need to have senseless, somewhat football related rubbish forced down your throat with a barge pole – and I am here to force that very trash!
Fortunately, this week is an interesting ol’ round. 4 games to play. The Nix play Melbourne Heart away, which ended 5-0 to Melbourne last time the teams met. It’s crucial 3 points for both sides as the Phoenix are 3 points off 5th spot, but also 3 points away from 2nd to bottom, currently held by the Heart, who still technically have a shot at making the playoffs. They’ll be gunning for the big W.
From 11 previous clashes, The Phoenix have won 5 to Melbournes 3, with 8 draws. More importantly though, is recent form. Melbourne lost last week after a brutal 5 game winning streak, while the Nix have had a more turbulent ride. The previous 5 results (including that 5-0 demolition at the Cake Tin) suggest this one could be leaning in Melbournes favour, but my glimmer of hope lies with how strongly the Nix have been finishing. And when I say ‘finishing’, I mean closing out the 90 with positive passing and build up play. I certainly don’t meaning slotting like Ruud Van Nistelrooy. This has been the problem in the last 2 fixtures for Wellington, and not taking your chances is a big problem. Huysegems golden run has stalled, Roy Krishna is just finding his feet (but looks very promising), Tyler Boyd hasn’t had found himself on the score sheet and ol’ J. Brocoli… well yeah.
Add to that loss of momentum the injuries of Hernandez, Riera, and suspension of Muscat –this could be a tough week for Wellington. When they see Orlando Engelar lumber out onto the paddock, it’s going te be tough forgetting the blistering goal he scored back in wellington, and how he was able to bully Sigmund and Durante the entire time he was on the pitch.
I wouldn’t say I’m overly confident about bagging the 3 here but what’s promising is that over 80% of the games this season have been pretty entertaining, especially the last 10 minutes. Games can be shit for 80 minutes but as long as you’re sucked right in at the end, it’s usually worth the wait.
There’s a lot riding on this game for the Phoenix but the importance has sort of slipped under the radar – hopefully not for the players. It kicks off at 6pm tomorrow evening, which will be about the time this storm is predicted to subside. Slap some chips in the oven with some chicken salt and get the boys to bring around a few brews. The games at a family-friendly time this week so it’s great chance to get to bed nice & early, so that you can all get up for the United game on Monday. Sounds freakin’ beautiful to me.