Melbourne Victory vs. Central Coast Mariners – A-League, May 2, 2021
Melbourne Victory faces off against Central Coast at AAMI Park on Sunday, May 2, with both sides needing a win for very different reasons.
Having picked up just one win in their last eight games, the Mariners must claim all three points on Sunday to keep their premiership dreams alive.
At the other end of the ladder, Victory will be desperate to steer clear of last-place Newcastle and avoid the A-League’s unwanted accolade – the wooden spoon.
After checking out the bookmakers’ odds, I will share my Melbourne Victory vs. Central Coast Mariners prediction and betting pick.
Victory vs. Mariners Odds
There is value everywhere you look here.
Of course, Central Coast is the deserved favorite. The Mariners currently sit 17 points ahead of Victory and have proved they can compete with the league’s best teams this season.
However, Victory have won two of their previous four games and appear to have turned a corner since Grant Brebner left the club.
Let’s take a closer look at the teams before getting to my Victory vs. Mariners prediction.
Melbourne Victory Team Analysis
A dismal run of seven defeats in eight games ultimately spelled the end of the Brebner era. But since then, Victory have upped their game.
Under the guidance of caretaker manager Steve Kean, the Boys in Blue secured a crazy 5-4 win over the Wanderers last weekend – and they also managed to push Sydney FC all the way on Tuesday.
Given that Victory were crushed 3-0 by Sydney at the beginning of April, Tuesday’s 1-0 loss felt like a massive improvement. Kean’s men even registered 13 shots against the reigning champions and defended admirably throughout the match.
Having taken six points from a possible 12 in recent weeks, there is no denying that Victory are enjoying something of a revival.
Assessing the Mariners’ Form
By contrast, Central Coast has been on the decline over the past couple of months.
After winning eight of their opening 11 matches this term, talk of securing the premiership was rife. However, they have since managed to win just one of their previous eight outings (four draws, three defeats).
Up until Wednesday, the team’s performances hadn’t been too bad. But Brisbane humiliated Alen Stjacic’s men in their backyard, thrashing the home side 4-0.
While it is no secret that Central Coast has been overachieving all season, people were beginning to believe that Stajcic’s men could actually achieve something special in 2021. Unfortunately, their chances of upsetting the big boys are getting slimmer with every passing game.
Still, with veteran striker Matt Simon arguably in the form of his life, the Mariners remain a serious threat.
Victory vs. Mariners Prediction and Pick
Let’s get one thing straight – the Mariners have been on a different level to Victory this season.
Sure, Central Coast has taken a turn for the worse of late, while Victory appear to be on the up. Still, I can’t see the Boys in Blue getting the better of the Mariners this weekend.
Having taken everything into account, I’m going with the draw for my Melbourne Victory vs. Central Coast Mariners prediction.