Wellington Phoenix head coach Darije Kalezić has the luxury of a full roster to choose from and has named an unchanged squad for Saturday’s Hyundai A-League home clash against Western Sydney Wanderers.
It means some welcome selection headaches after a raft of positive performances in Wednesday night’s 2-1 win over in-form Melbourne Victory, with new signings Nathan Burns and Serbian playmaker Matija Ljujić both impressing off the bench.
Both Wellington and Western Sydney have tight four day turnarounds, but the visitors will have to travel from Sydney, and also face a few selection issues due to either injury, suspension or international selection.
For the Wanderers, lively Spanish winger Alvaro Cejudo misses the trip with a calf injury, while captain Robbie Cornthwaite and fellow centre defender Jonathan Aspropotamitis miss out through suspension and Australian U23 call up respectively.
Former Nix favourite Roly Bonevacia is set to make his Westpac Stadium return as the visitors look to build on recent form after a scratchy start to the season.
It’s a great opportunity to also catch the #NixGeneration of stars in action as the Wellington Phoenix Reserves take on Hawke’s Bay United from 4.45pm in the ISPS Handa Premiership.
Future Phoenix stars such as Sarpreet Singh, Logan Rogerson and Keegan Smith could see important game time as they lend professional experience to Nix stars you haven’t even heard about yet. Two boys from our Wellington Phoenix Soccer Schools will join the squad from Auckland as we continue to look to nurture some of the best young talent from across New Zealand.
It’s double the Phoenix, double the value, double the fun – as we celebrate the Summer of Football with face painting, bouncey castles and free entry for kids!
Wellington Phoenix Squad: 1.Lewis ITALIANO (Gk), 2.Daniel MULLEN, 3.Scott GALLOWAY, 4.Goran PARACKI, 6.Dylan FOX, 7.Nathan BURNS, 8.Matija LJUJIC, 9.Andrija KALUDJEROVIC, 10.Michael MCGLINCHEY, 12.Adam PARKHOUSE, 13.Marco ROSSI, 14.Alex RUFER, 18.Sarpreet SINGH, 19.Tom DOYLE, 21. Roy KRISHNA, 22.Andrew DURANTE 23.Matthew RIDENTON, 30.Keegan SMITH (Gk)
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 14.Alex RUFER (promoted), 18.Sarpreet SINGH (promoted)
Western Sydney Wanderers FC Squad: 3.Jack CLISBY, 4.Josh RISDON, 5.Brendan HAMILL, 7.Steve LUSTICA, 8.Roly BONEVACIA, 9.Oriol RIERA, 11.Brendon SANTALAB, 15.Kearyn BACCUS, 16.Jaushua SOTIRIO, 19.Mark BRIDGE, 20.Vedran JANJETOVIC (Gk), 23.Lachlan SCOTT, 24.Raúl LLORENTE, 33.Michael THWAITE, 34.Kosta GROZOS, 35. Tass MOURDOUKOUTAS, 40.Nick SUMAN (Gk), 49.Abraham MAJOK
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 4.Josh RISDON (returns from injury), 16.Jaushua SOTIRIO (returns from injury), 35. Tass MOURDOUKOUTAS (promoted), 49.Abraham MAJOK (promoted)
Outs: 18.Robbie CORNTHWAITE (suspended – 1 match), 25.Chris HERD (suspended – 1 match)
Unavailable: 10.Álvaro CEJUDO (calf – 1 week), 2.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS (international duty), 42.Keanu BACCUS (international duty)
ISPS Handa Premiership curtain-raiser
Wellington Phoenix Reserves v Hawke’s Bay United, Westpac Stadium, kick-off 4.45pm
Hyundai A-League Round 16
Wellington Phoenix v Western Sydney Wanderers, kick-off 7.35pm
TV Coverage from 4.30pm on Sky Sport 3.