The Australia A-League is doing their best to play their season amid the coronavirus outbreak. Despite some games getting postponed to a later date, most games in the Hyundai A-League are being played. Though that is happening without fans in attendance. Australia hasn’t had any major outbreaks thus far, at least in comparison to European countries, so officials have felt that football can continue, albeit with a shortened season.
Along with the A-League continuing to play in Australia, the Victorian Premier League is still continuing their schedule. The Victorian Premier League is more of a semi-pro league than anything, with players only hoping that they’d get a call from an A-League club. It is available for wagering at most online sportsbooks, though. Note that if you’re in the US, games are typically broadcast on ESPN+ and DAZN, if you are Canadian.
The A-League is broadcasted on main sports networks in Australia, so that’s not much of an issue for Aussies. Australians have gone through enough this year with the wildfires and now the coronavirus falls on their lap as soon as that gets under control. Fortunately, the A-League is still providing a bit of a distraction for people.
It’s a widely wagered league, along with the AFL and NRL in Australia. Horse racing is also a big draw. In any event, if you are looking for a league to bet on, the A-League is the best league in the world that still has their doors open. As far as I know, the Russian Premier League was the last professional sports league to allow fans in the stadium. Since then the schedule has been postponed until April 10, though.
Sydney FC and Wellington Phoenix FC, which was scheduled for Wednesday at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, has been postponed. However, the Central Coast Mariners and Melbourne City FC will be playing on Friday night, game-time set for 5:30 PM in Central Coast. That is 2:30 AM EST or 11:30 PM PST in the US and Canada, so it’s either going to be a late night or early morning for you. With all of these distractions going on, this is an important game for Melbourne FC.
Melbourne FC enters Friday behind Sydney FC in the ladder by 10 points. Sydney FC is the powerhouse of the league and defending champions, though Melbourne City has been having a productive year with a record of 11-4-6 going into this match. Everybody is chasing the defending champs, and Sydney looks positioned to repeat, however. Melbourne City will be in action against Central Coast on Friday night. Head below for our free Central Coast vs. Melbourne City pick in the Australia A-League.
Central Coast Mariners vs. Melbourne City FC Betting Odds:
Central Coast vs. Melbourne City Prediction:
If any team in the A-League would like the season to get cancelled, it has to be the Central Coast Mariners. They’ve found no push or effort on the pitch this season, and have fallen all the way down to 4-1-16 on the season. I will say that they did put forth some effort early in 2019, but nothing has been working for them of late. They started off the year with a 3-2 win over, and then actually beat Melbourne City. However, since that point the only success they’ve really had has been in the FFA Cup against inferior opponents.
The most recent win for Central Coast was back on January 12 against Melbourne Victory. Melbourne Victory are a 5-5-11 squad, so that’s not the most impressive win for them. The last win they had against a team with a current record above .500 was the Perth Glory on November 3. Perth are 8-7-5 going into the weekend. Serbian, Milan Duric, leads the team in 2019-20 with only 4 goals. That’s not good and failing to generate offence has been a consistent theme for Central Coast this year.
They’ve netted just 0.95 goals per game in 21 matches played, with an average of only 0.91 goals a game on the road. The defenders haven’t been doing much better, but have kept them in games here and there at least. The Mariners have allowed an average of 2.24 goals scored per game. Conversely, Melbourne City has conceded 1.43 goals per match. Melbourne City has a serious defensive edge in this contest.
How motivated is Central Coast going to be about this game? On a scale of 1-10, it’s likely hovering around 1. Considering how poorly their season has gone, and the pandemic around the world, playing well against Melbourne City is not going to be first on their minds. Even then, they’ve had no motivation to play well recently.
Note that in their previous nine games, a nine-game losing streak, Central Coast has lost by an average of 2 goals per game. Conversely, Melbourne City has gone 3-1-2 in their previous six matches. They’re coming off a 1-1 draw against Western Sydney, who are a 7-4-9 club. Melbourne City might not be able to catch Sydney, though they shouldn’t have any issues dispatching the lowly Central Coast Mariners for a 2-1 or 3-1 win on Friday on the road.