Count-down on to Gold Coast clash

It’s the match-up everyone’s been waiting for since it was announced Gold Coast United would enter the Hyundai A-League and this weekend’s Skilled Park clash between Sydney FC and the competition newcomers promises to be an absorbing encounter, with the teams battling for top spot on the table.


It-s the match-up everyone-s been waiting for since it was announced Gold Coast United would enter the Hyundai A-League and this weekend-s Skilled Park clash between Sydney FC and the competition newcomers promises to be an absorbing encounter, with the teams battling for top spot on the table.

Sydney FC looks a new side this season under the tutelage of Vitezslav Lavicka. With three wins and an unbeaten record after four matches, the soft-spoken Czech is letting his side-s football do all the talking.

Fresh from producing their best all-round performance in their 2-0 victory at home against Wellington on Sunday, the ladder-leaders will come up against a Gold Coast United team looking to bounce back from a shock 1-0 defeat at the hands of the Newcastle Jets.

The Gold Coast will be missing its marquee man due to international duties, but Sydney midfielder Alex Brosque believes his team will still need to be on top of its game.

“Of course losing Jason Culina is a big loss,” said Brosque. “All their movement is done through him. However they are far from a one man team.”

“Shane Smeltz is a big danger. He will lift and is the one most likely to get his team going. It-s important that we limit his options.”

Sydney is not without selection headaches of its own. Coach Lavicka must decide who will replace midfielder, Terry McFlynn after he was ruled out with the thigh injury but forward John Aloisi looks likely to overcome a knock to his right knee suffered while scoring Sydney-s second against the Phoenix.

“I am not happy, but this is football,” explained Lavicka. “It is too soon to say who will come in to replace McFlynn, but we do have options.”

With McFlynn out of action for at least 3 weeks, Stuart Musialik and Rhyan Grant are the main men to enter the frame, although Musialik-s buildup has been interrupted this week by illness.

The battle for top spot on the Hyundai A-League table kicks-off at Skilled Park on the Gold Coast at 5pm on Saturday evening.