The Central Coast Mariners recovered well from their 5-1 thrashing from Newcastle week, holding Western Sydney Wanderers to a 2-2 draw at Spotless Stadium. The Mariners led twice through Asdrubal and Dani de Silva but goals from Oriol Riera and Roly Bonevacia either side of those strikes kept Hayden Foxe undefeated after two weeks. De Silva caught most of the attention from this performance but a quick look at the stats show there was perhaps an even better player on the field.
The 26-year-old grew in stature as the 2016-17 season drew to a close and it’s good to see he has started in the same vein of form this season. Forming a solid combination with former Premier League midfielder Chris Herd, and playing alongside experienced defenders such as Robbie Cornthwaite, Michael Thwaite, and Josh Risdon it looks as if Baccus will only continue to grow and become a key part of Western Sydney’s side this season.
Against the Mariners he had 78 touches on the ball, only Alan Baro (99), and Antony Golec (90) had more. Only those two and Tom Hiariej and Wout Brama attempted more than Baccus’ 60. Only Golec and Hiariej had a higher completion rate than Baccus’ 85 per cent.
While only Herd and Jumpei Kusukami had a higher percentage however they attempted fewer passes.
- 45 of Brendon Santalab’s 100 appearances have come off the bench
- Daniel de Silva scored his first A-League goal since February 2015
- Oriol Riera became the second player to score in consecutive matches at Spotless Stadium
- Other than their penalty shoot-out loss to Brisbane in last season’s Elimination Final, the Wanderers are undefeated in nine matches
- The Mariners completed 75 per cent of passes made in the Wanderers’ half
— Fox Sports Lab (@FoxSportsLab) October 14, 2017
No one attempted and successfully made more tackles than the Wanderers’ midfielder’s three. The 11 duels he won was only matched by teammate Raul Llorente, and only Andrew Hoole had as many duels as Baccus (16).
Only Risdon and Brama made more than Baccus’ two interceptions (both made three), and he won four fouls for his side which was the most from any player on the pitch.
Baccus used to cop a bit of flack due to his performances but his form has improved since playing regularly for Western Sydney and as these numbers show he’s good enough to control matches which is a huge improvement for the South African-born midfielder.
— Daniel Carr (@danieljcarrr) October 14, 2017
As mentioned at the top of the article Riera and Asdrubal both found the back of the net, they also netted in Round 1 taking their totals to two goals this season. But can you name the top five Spanish goal scorers in A-League history? Test your knowledge below.