Stats highlight Perth's glorious rise and stuttering Sydney's slide

Statistics breaking this amazing A-League season down show not only the extent of rises by Adelaide United and Perth Glory and falls by Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory, but also that Western Sydney Wanderers and Brisbane Roar have not been nearly as dominant recently as earlier in the season.

Andy Keogh

Source: Getty Images

Perth are the dominant team entering the last three rounds of the regular season. They were way back in ninth place on the competition table, ahead of only battling Central Coast Mariners, after the first 12 of the 24 rounds so far, but now they are fifth and closing in on the top four.

Adelaide and Glory were clearly the best-performed teams over the second lot of 12 rounds. United collected 27 points during that period and Perth 25.

But breaking it down even further, to the last six rounds alone, Perth are the best-performed team with 15 points, ahead of Adelaide and Melbourne City (both 13).

United are fourth on the table. They reached first place in round 22, but have since had a loss and a draw. Injuries and suspension, which threaten to have a huge bearing on the outcome of the finals series in such a close-fought competition, have hurt Adelaide recently.

This is how the competition table looks now, with points and goal difference in brackets:
1 Wanderers (42, +8)
2 Melbourne City (41, +19)
3 Brisbane Roar (41, +7)
4 Adelaide (40, +11)
5 Perth (37, +9)
6 Melbourne Victory (34, +2)
7 Sydney FC (31, -1)
8 Newcastle Jets (27, -13)
9 Wellington Phoenix (25, -12)
10 Central Coast Mariners (13, -30)

Wanderers and Brisbane were first and second respectively after 12 rounds, but the table has become much more condensed since then due to the improvement of several other teams and Western Sydney and Roar not collecting points as freely as they had done previously.

This is how the table looked after the first 12 rounds:
1 Wanderers (26, +10)
2 Brisbane (24, +9)
3 Melbourne City (20, +10)
4 Sydney FC (20, +5)
5 Melbourne Victory (17, +1)
6 Wellington (15, -3)
7 Adelaide (13, -5)
8 Newcastle Jets (13, -6)
9 Perth (12, -5)
10 Central Coast (5, -16)

And this is a table taking into account only the results from round 13 to round 24:
1 Adelaide (27, +16)
2 Perth (25, +14)
3 Melbourne City (21, +9)
4 Melbourne Victory (17, +1)
5 Brisbane (17, -2)
6 Wanderers (16, -2)
7 Newcastle (14, -7)
8 Sydney FC (11, -6)
9 Wellington (10, -9)
10 Central Coast (8, -14)

The big movers, Adelaide and Perth, each collected more than double the number of points in the second 12 rounds than they did in the first 12. Glory picked up 25 to go with 12 and Adelaide 27 on top of 13.

Wanderers collected 16 points in the second lot of 12 rounds, compared to 26 for the first lot. Brisbane collected 17, compared to 24. By comparison, City have been consistent, collecting 20 points in the first 12 rounds and 21 in the next 12.

Victory have been consistent as well, although not consistently good. They collected 17 in the first 12 and another 17 in the next 12.

Sydney's collect was almost halved, from 20 points in the first 12 rounds to 11 in the second 12.

The last six rounds in particular, which coincided  with the beginning of AFC Champions League campaigns for Victory and Sydney, have been awful for each of last season's grand finalists. Victory have collected six points from a possible 18 during that time and Sydney just three.

Wanderers and Brisbane have been so-so, collecting eight and seven points respectively.

This is a table incorporating results from round 19 to 24 only:
1 Perth (15, +10)
E2 Adelaide (13, +8) and Melbourne City (13, +8)
4 Wellington (9, 0)
5 Newcastle (8, -1)
6 Wanderers (8, -2)
7 Brisbane (7, -2)
8 Melbourne Victory (6, -4)
9 Sydney FC (3, -6)
10 Central Coast (1, -11)

Glory are rocketing home, with eight wins from their last nine games, while City, with four wins from their last five games, are looking much stronger due to an improved defence.

If Adelaide can quickly reload and go again they can still make a big run at finishing the regular season in first place.

Wanderers have gone two wins, two losses and two draws in their last six games, which is indicative of where their game is at the moment - up and down. Brisbane have been similar during that period, with two wins, a draw and three losses.

Roar and Wanderers each need to improve a bit to clinch the Plate, unless all of the other teams around them don't get great results over the last three rounds.

But the plate, the all-important top two, the top four and the top six - if Sydney can make a late recovery - could all go right down to the wire in round 27.

This weekend, though, Adelaide and City, who are at home to Central Coast and Wellington respectively, each appear to have the best chances to strike.

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5 min read
Published 21 March 2016 at 7:38pm
By Greg Prichard