A-League Team of the Week – Round 1

Round 1 has come and gone and left many fans intrigued and excited. Roy O’Donovan fired Newcastle to the top of the table, Western Sydney won without Tony Popovic, Bruce Kamau netted a double in Melbourne City’s win, Adelaide and Wellington drew across the ditch and Sydney FC left Etihad Stadium with their fifth straight win over Melbourne Victory. While the Jets were the big victors it’s Graham Arnold’s Sky Blues who dominate our team of the week.

Andrew Redmayne
Andrew Redmayne has a lot to prove. He’s never really been a number one goalkeeper and he has to follow in the footsteps of Danny Vukovic and is battling Alex Cisak for the spot. But his kept his sheet clean against a side featuring Besart Berisha, Mitch Austin, and Leroy George. He made 39 passes, five clearances, won four duels, and claimed four crosses.

Paulo Retre
Paulo Retre had huge shoes to fill replacing the energetic Rhyan Grant as Sydney FC’s right back, but Grant would be proud with Retre’s performance. He had 87 touches, made 52 passes, delivered four crosses, cleared the ball four times, and won four duels. Grant might have issues coming back into the squad once he returns from injury.

Bart Schenkeveld
Massimo Maccarone was criticised before even taking the field due to his age. But his resume had high hopes for Brisbane fans. However he spent most of the night spent in Bart Schenkeveld’s pocket. He made 34 passes, won five duels, and won two fouls without conceding one. While Michael Jakobsen may be a better partner in the centre of defence than Iacopo La Rocca but Warren Joyce won’t be complaining about the clean sheet.

Jade North
Jade North conceded two goals and played in a losing side but his individual performance is worthy enough of a spot in the team. He touched the ball 86 times, made 66 passes, seven clearances, six interceptions, won five aerial duels, made three tackles, and won two fouls. Like Schekeveld he might perform better with Luke DeVere by his side, but he’s going just fine at the moment.

Raul Llorente
Ben Garuccio produced a great performance for Adelaide against Wellington, but Raul Llorente’s performance for Western Sydney was even better. He touched the ball 87 times, making 58 passes. He won six duels, cleared the ball four times, made three interceptions, and two successful tackles.

Luke Brattan
Luke Brattan has always been a decent player. Rated highly by Ange Postecoglou, it wasn’t until the 2013-14 season when Brattan took control of a team and led them to a championship. Playing at a club such as Melbourne City brings the same expectations and he certainly proved he’s up to the task. He made 73 passes, delivered seven crosses, made four interceptions, made three tackles and created two chances for his teammates.

Josh Brillante
Josh Brillante was one of the best players in the league last season. His combination with Brandon O’Neill in the centre of midfield played a huge role in their championship winning season. He continued that form on the weekend completing 81.4 per cent of his 59 passes, had 75 touches, won eight duels, made six tackles, and three interceptions. There’s only one word to describe that performance.

Adrian Mierzejewski
There wasn’t a lot of hype surrounding Adrian Mierzejewski’s signing with Sydney FC. Much was said by Graham Arnold and commentators around the country were practising pronouncing his surname, but boy did he make an impact in the Big Blue?! He touched the ball 74 times, made 47 passes, won 12 duels, six fouls and had three shots on goal. Did we see the debut of this year’s Johnny Warren Medalist? Only time will tell.

Diego Castro
What more can be said about Diego Castro that hasn’t already been said? He might’ve been in a losing side against the Wanderers his performance was still what is expected by him. He was the most involved touching the ball 90 times. He made 67 passes, delivered 10 crosses, created five chances, successfully dribbled the ball five times, and having two shots on goal.

Andrew Nabbout
Andrew Nabbout’s performance personified how a winger should perform. The former Victory attacker created three chances for his team with two of those turning into goals. He won seven duels of the 12 he attempted. Nabbout also won three fouls. He started in similar form last season but dropped off around new year. Jets fans will need him to keep this form throughout the whole season if the Jets are to reach the finals

Roy O’Donovan
Playing against his former club, who just so happen to be rivals, away from home, the Irish immediately wrote his name into Newcastle folklore netting a hat-trick in their 5-1 win over Central Coast. He won three fouls including the penalty which he converted. He also set up Joe Champness’ debut goal and assisted Dimitri Petratos’ goal. What a start to life in red and blue!

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