Preview: Melbourne City v Adelaide United

For many there will be one primary focus for this match. Can star-studded Melbourne City halt one of the more remarkable form-reversals in sport.

Runaway champions last season, and early pace-setters this term, City seemed almost invincible. Their 18-match undefeated coming to an end at the hands of big-name Canberra United was one thing. But two more defeats in succession is quite simply remarkable.

Valuable American defender Lauren Barnes will have to sit this one out with suspension, but City have more than enough quality in reserve to make do. Westfield Matildas forward Larissa Crummer makes a welcome return to the squad this week following a lengthy injury absence.

Recovering from their midweek exertions against Perth Glory will be one thing, but perhaps the mental challenge remains their greatest hurdle for now.

Adelaide may sit equal bottom, but they have proven themselves more than capable of causing an upset. Over the past month they have drawn against Newcastle Jets and were somewhat unlucky 3-2 losers at Brisbane Roar.

The two clubs have met just once before – a 2-0 win for City in Melbourne last season.

Melbourne City v Adelaide United
Monday 2 January 2017
Venue: CB Smith Reserve
Kick-Off: 7:15PM (Local) (7:15PM (AEDT))

Referee: Kelly Jones
Assistant Referee 1: Laura Moya
Assistant Referee 2: Danielle Anderson
Fourth Official: Kate Jacewicz

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Melbourne City squad: 1.Lydia WILLIAMS (GK), 2.Teigen ALLEN, 5.Laura ALLEWAY, 6.Aivi LUIK, 7.Steph CATLEY (c), 9.Larissa CRUMMER, 10.Jessica FISHLOCK, 11.Erika TYMRAK, 12.Olivia ELLIS 13.Rebekah STOTT, 14.Melina AYRES, 15.Amy JACKSON, 16.Beverly YANEZ, 17.Marianna TABAIN, 19.Tyla-Jay VLAJNIC, 23.Erin HUDSON (GK) **two to be omitted**

Ins: 9.Larissa CRUMMER (promoted), 12.Olivia ELLIS (promoted), 17.Marianna TABAIN (promoted)

Outs: Lauren Barnes (Suspended – 1 week)

Unavailable: Nil

Adelaide United squad: 1.Eliza CAMPBELL (gk), 2.Cheyenne HAMMOND, 3.Georgia IANNELLA, 4.Emily HODGSON, 5.MÔNICA, 6.Ally LADAS, 7.Stella RIGON (c), 10.Racheal QUIGLEY, 11.Sofia HUERTA, 12.Adriana JONES, 14.Grace ABBEY, 15.Georgia CAMPAGNALE, 18.Isabella SCALZI, 20.Sarah WILLACY (gk), 24.Danielle COLAPRICO, 25.Katie NAUGHTON, 30.Alex CHIDIAC **two to be omitted**

Ins: 2.Cheyenne HAMMOND (promoted), 6.Ally LADAS (promoted)

Outs: nil

Unavailable: 8.Emily CONDON (illness)