A bottom of the table clash
On Friday morning (UK time) it will be time for the bottom-of-the-table clash between Western Sydney Wanderers and Central Coast Mariners. I think there is some real value in backing the home team.
Western Sydney Wanderers
After six rounds WSW have picked up five points with the results record as 1-2-3 which is not especially impressive. Performances though have been a little better than what the table suggests at first glance. I definitely think they are better than the WSW of last season - they were really awful. Now they don't necessarily have a team that on paper should be above the relegation zone but I do think that they deserve more than their five points. We can analyse their shots statistics this season to get a clearer picture.
- 1-1 vs Perth (8-11 shots)
- 0-2 vs Sydney (11-9 shots)
- 3-0 vs Wellington (17-9 shots)
- 2-2 vs Brisbane (12-7 shots)
- 0-2 vs Jets (14-9 shots)
- 0-4 vs Victory (8-16 shots)
Then if we delve a little deeper we can see that the Wanderers have had significantly better chances than their opponents when it comes to shots. Over the weekend, they produced a really lacklustre performance away at Victory but on Saturday I think you will see the team bounce back against really weak opposition.
Central Coast Mariners
The Mariners began their campaign with two draws but now they've suffered four straight losses and sit bottom of the A-league with only two points from six matches. In contrast to the Wanderers I don't think this trend will change any time soon. I think they have a weak squad that are playing some awful football, especially their defence. The fact that in attack they are relying on Matt Simon doesn't make the situation any better. Over the weekend the team produced an ok performance that ended 1-2 in a loss at home against Sydney with, of course, a goal from Matt Simon. CMM won one match away from home last season and I find it hard to imagine that this team will pick up their first 3 points away from home this season on Friday.
There's real value in backing the home team here and that's not just down to the league table. The Wanderers have been better this season than their position suggests. Central Coast on the other hand are just as poor as the table suggests, and their away statistics leave a lot to be desired. I give the home team a 60% chance of winning and there's definitely value in odds of 5/8 right now.
I'll be backing the Wanderers at odds of 5/8 with Bethard.