After a long few months the wait is finally over for the A league to return. Gone are the days of trying to fill in content and wait out the off season, as Sunday sees the opening match for the red and black. After what has been possibly one of the biggest crisis in the club’s history; with the abrupt departure of super coach Poppa, now is a better time than ever to react positively with a result against the men from WA. The Wanderers will be without a new appointed manager; however, Hayden Foxe has currently been appointed the caretaker manager and will be hoping to impress with his first task at Spotless on Sunday.
Perth have had an up and down preseason after being knocked out by NPL side Hieldburg United in the FFA cup, they then won against two NPL sides and drew with the WA state team. Perth have the highest number of ex Wanderers within their squad, hosting; Liam Reddy, Andreu, Scott Neville, and Mitch Nichols. Their attack is one of the deadliest in the league, with Taggart, Castro and Keogh presenting a handful for Vedran and co.
Last season’s encounters between the two sides did not bode well for the Wanderers, with 2 draws, out of the 12 total for the season, included with a 2-0 loss in Perth. However, this will be Perth’s first match on the smooth, quick surface of Spotless and could play into the Wanderers favour.
Key Match up
Kearyn Baccus vs Andreu
Baccus had his most improved season last year at the red and black and will look to continue his progress this season, opening with a dominant display against former Wanderer favourite Andreu. During his time with the Wanderers, Andreu quickly became a fan favourite and displayed excellent quality both on and off the ball. The battle in the middle of the park will be crucial come Sunday and should let either Baccus or Andreu dictate the terms of the match.
For Riera to continue his excellent preseason another big game is needed from the big Spaniard. Having scored 4 goals in 3 FFA cup games, Reira has looked the goods so far and needs to continue his form into Sunday. Should Reira nod home the winner he will continue to fall into the Wanderers faithful hearts.
Wanderers 2- Glory 1
Goals galore for the first game of the season, with both sides looking dangerous on the attack. However, Glory’s defensive losses over the off season should prove too heavy, allowing the red and black to just get over the line.