Two A-League powerhouses are set to go at it again in one of the league’s most heated rivalries.
We select the best combined team between Melbourne Victory and Adelaide United.
Did we miss anyone?
Eugene Galekovic – Goalkeeper – Adelaide United
The Adelaide skipper missed the early stages of the season through injury but has not put a foot wrong since making his return. The Socceroo provides a calmness at the back for his side – his leadership and presence on the pitch is one that must be admired. Galekovic has made a number of key saves throughout the season to keep his side in games and even lead them to wins. The Adelaide shotstopper is a man who rarely makes a mistake, a key element of his position.
Jason Geria – Right-back – Melbourne Victory
The young full-back has established himself as one of the Victory’s key squad members in the past couple of seasons and Geria has continued his fine form this campaign. The Olyroo positions himself well in defence with opposition wingers often finding it difficult to beat the athletic Geria. The 22-year-old has developed an excellent understanding with New Zealand international Kosta Barbarouses down the right-hand side, proving he is not scared to get forward.
Dylan McGowan – Centre-back – Adelaide United
McGowan has enjoyed a consistent year at the heart of the Adelaide United defence, playing on a consistent basis. The 24-year-old has been key in a number of impressive Adelaide performances, in particular during their recent purple patch that has seen them storm into third on the table. The central defender has not looked out of place all year and is enjoying quite the season. Strong both in the tackle and in the air, McGowan will be hoping this season can provide a platform to a potential move overseas in the not too distant future.
Matthieu Delpierre – Centre-back – Melbourne Victory
The big Frenchmen is arguably the key to the reigning champions’ ability to retain the A-League title comes season’s end. The former Bundesliga winner’s experience is key in the big games with his calmness at the back seeming to relax the rest of the Victory back four. His ability to play out from the back is crucial to the Victory’s style and his height makes him a real danger at set pieces.
Tarek Elrich – Left-back – Adelaide United
While the Socceroo may not be enjoying his best season he has consistently been appearing in the Reds starting line up. His experience has been key as Adelaide have enjoyed a mid season surge to rocket up the table into third place ahead of a fifth place Victory they face on Friday night. Elrich’s ability to get forward has been highlighted by his darting runs forward and a knack for finding the back of the net. His defensive ability has been highlighted numerous times this season as he has limited some of the competition’s best wingers to have a very minimal impact.
Leigh Broxham – Central-midfield – Melbourne Victory
The stand-in skipper in the absence of fellow midfielder Carl Valeri, Broxham has rarely put a foot wrong this season. Broxham is the Victory’s Mr Fix-It, often finding himself playing out of position to cover for injuries and suspensions. Despite his small stature, the central-midfield utility is not scared to throw himself about and has built a reputation as one of the most hard-nosed players in the league.
Marcelo Carrusca – Central-midfield – Adelaide United
Carrusca has been a focal point of his side’s recent good form, producing some of his best football of the season in recent weeks. The Argentine is one of the best set piece takers in the A-League and has highlighted why in some of his recent performances with some stunning free kicks. The midfielder, along with team mate Isaias, are the creative sparks for the United midfield. The pair often play the killer ball to set Adelaide on their way to dangerous attacks.
Gui Finkler – Central-midfield – Melbourne Victory
Finkler is a key part of an attacking quartet that opposition teams fear when it is firing. The Brazilian is a player that can change a match in an instant, even if he has not heavily been involved, the type of player all clubs would love to have their hands on. The 30-year-old, who was snubbed alongside Fahid Ben Khafallah as one of the three foreigners Victory would take into the Asian Champions League, will make Finkler even more key for the rest of the season due to his lightened work load compared to the rest of the squad. His dead ball ability is arguably the best in the league.
Kosta Barbarouses – Right-wing – Melbourne Victory
The flying winger is rumoured to be off to the Wellington Phoenix next season and the Victory will want to make the most of his abilities for the rest of this season at least. The New Zealand international’s pace is a key part of his playing style and he looks to beat the opposition full-back by bursting past him. Barbarouses’ ability to cut inside makes him dangerous as he has shown his ability to find the back of the net on numerous occasions. The former Brisbane Roar man has enjoyed a consistent season and arguably his best in Victory colours.
Craig Goodwin- Left-wing- Adelaide United
Goodwin has enjoyed a breakout season for the Reds with his name being thrown about for Socceroos selection. The winger has been arguably Adelaide United’s best player this season as he continues to torment opposition defenders down the left side of the Reds lineup. The former Newcastle Jets man has added an extra dimension to his game this season, scoring goals on a more consistent basis for his side, thus giving it an extra edge.
Besart Berisha – Striker – Melbourne Victory
Since linking up with the Victory, the Albanian has consistently found the back of the net, following on from where he left off at the Brisbane Roar. Currently sitting second in the Golden Boot standings behind Melbourne City’s Bruno Fornaroli, Berisha continues to prove that he loves the big stage, scoring decisive goals in the biggest games of the season. His ability to harass opposition defenders is a sign of a top striker and Berisha’s pressing is an example that should be followed by all young strikers.
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