A fascinating match-up looms in Sydney on Saturday with quality two teams desperate for a win, though for very different reasons.
In-form leaders Sydney FC, - boasting a two-point lead at the summit - can put one on hand on a fourth premiership with a win here, ahead of a final-round trip to Adelaide United.
Newcastle Jets, for their part, currently sit two points off fourth and will set up a classic final-round winner-takes-all meeting with Melbourne City should they earn a victory on Saturday.
Both recent form and history suggest Sydney FC will start as warm favourites. The Sky Blues have lost just three times in 16 matches against their northern rivals, with their last defeat five years ago.
Prior to last weekend, Sydney FC drew with champions Melbourne City and thumped Canberra United with an outrageous 6-1 scoreline.
Not only are they are scoring goals, but they comfortably boast the best defence in the competition – just eight goals conceded in ten matches.
The Sky Blues welcome back Westfield Matildas Alanna Kennedy after serving a one-match suspension, while young talent Amy Harrison is back in contention for selection after a year’s absence with a knee injury.
As for Newcastle, their form is very much on the up after a costly mid-season slump. Their past three matches include a 2-1 win over Brisbane Roar, plus a 1-1 draw against Perth Glory in a match they were unlucky not to win.
Can Newcastle earn a result and stay in sight of their finals appearance for eight years?
Sydney FC v Newcastle Jets
Saturday 21 January 2017
Venue: Lambert Park
Kick-Off: 5:00PM (Local) (5:00PM (AEDT))
Referee: Rebecca Durcau
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Sydney FC squad: 1.Sham KHAMIS (gk), 2.Teresa POLIAS (c), 3.Remy SIEMSEN, 4.Elizabeth RALSTON, 6.Servet UZUNLAR, 7.Nicola BOLGER, 8.Amy HARRISON, 9.Caitlin FOORD, 10.Francisca ORDEGA, 11.Natalie TOBIN, 12.Olivia PRICE, 13.Georgia YEOMAN-DALE, 14.Alanna KENNDY, 15.Sarah EASTHOPE (gk), 17.Kyah SIMON, 19.Leena KHAMIS, 20.Princess IBINI **two to be omitted**
Ins: 8.Amy HARRISON (new signing), 14.Alanna KENNEDY (returns from suspension)
Newcastle Jets squad: 1.Katelyn ROWLAND (gk), 2.Sophie NENADOVIC, 4.Megan OYSTER, 5.Arin GILLILAND, 6.Cassidy DAVIS, 7.Gema SIMON (c), 9.Jennifer HOY, 10.Rhali DOBSON, 11.Tara PENDER, 13.Grace MACINTYRE, 14.Brooke MILLER, 15.Elizabeth COPUS-BROWN, 16.Liana DANASKOS, 17.Jenna KINGSLEY, 18.Clare WHEELER, 19.Ashlee BRODIGAN, 20.Claire COELHO (gk) **two to be omitted**
Ins: 11.Tara PENDER (promoted), 14.Brooke MILLER (promoted)
Unavailable: 3.Elizabeth O’REILLY (ankle – 2 weeks), 12.Chloe Logarzo (ankle – 2 weeks)