The Melbourne derby might prove to be the ignition for Victory’s season as they claimed bragging rights in the Christmas derby. Western United meanwhile, put another dent in Markus Babbel’s hopes as Western Sydney Wanderers coach with a late equaliser.

Central Coast Mariners have sent their fans back in a jovial mood for the holiday season with a vital win against Adelaide United while Perth Glory brought back the displays of last season as they demolished Newcastle Jets 6-2.

Here is a look at five standout performances from round eleven of the A-League.

Aaron Calver

With the injury to Joshua Risdon, Calver, traditionally a centreback, has been thrown in as a makeshift right wing back while Mark Rudan looks for a replacement.

Given United’s risk-free approach so far this season where they look to sit back in numbers, Calver’s introduction should have meant that they look to be far more resolute defensively with little movement going forward.

While Calver was solid defensively and stifled many of the opponent’s attacks, it was his attacking instincts that clawed Western United back into the game against the Wanderers.

Chasing a goal in the final few minutes, Calver launched down the field and darted inside the box to meet the cross of Connor Pain and wrong foot Western Sydney keeper Daniel Lopar.

That made it a goal and an assist for the newly assigned right back and with some more performances like this, Risdon might be lucky to get himself back on the team sheet once he returns.

Ulises Davila

There is barely a week that goes by without the Mexican star failing to impress. This time, Davila left the champions in awe as he slalomed past defenders and put in through balls for fun.

The goal, his seventh in 10 games, was easy enough, as Reno Piscopo made a run down the to square it for Davila who put it past Redmayne with ease.

Davila might have even had a second, but he somehow struck wide from an unmissable position which meant his team had to settle for the draw against the team currently leading the league ladder.

Still, with Davila showing himself to be one of the best in the league – if not the best – alongside the dangerous forward line of David Ball and Gary Hooper, Phoenix will certainly be in contention for the Premiership and even Championship come May.

Ola Toivonen

The traditionally competitive Victory has floundered of late with the Swede being one of the few bright stars in their campaign so far. If anyone was going to turn the ship around for them in the Melbourne derby, it was going to be him.

He fulfilled his duty as he punched two goals past their City rivals to send the Vucks fans in a joyous mood before Christmas. It might also just lift the spirit of the club as they look to start making some headway on the ladder.

The best stat to show how much the Navy Blues rely on their captain, it’s the fact that Toivonen has now scored seven of Victory’s 11 goals this season.

With the Swede carrying such a huge load for his team, it will be worrying that he looked to be struggling with a tight muscle and also earned another yellow card, meaning he will definitely miss their next match against Newcastle Jets in the new year.

Diego Castro

El Maestro once again weaved his magic to make Jets’ defence disappear as Glory put six past goalkeeper Glen Moss.

Castro whipped in a couple of delightful goals, the first a peach of a freekick as the wall could only stare as the ball glided over them into the nets, the second a low shot curling into the far right corner.

The Spaniard wasn’t only scoring either, he was actively involved in the build up for the rest of the goals, emphasising his importance to the team as both a creative and finishing outlet.

At 37, it certainly feels like Castro is getting better as the years roll on, and after a season where Glory won the Premiership, the captain will have the Championship in his sight this time around.

Kye Rowles

The Mariners claimed their first back to back home victories since 2015 and it was in a large part thanks to Rowles contributions on both sides of the pitch.

The 21 year old put Mariners in the lead as he found space in a crowded penalty area following a set piece to direct the ball into goal and past Paul Izzo.

The former Brisbane Roar defender then provided a crucial interception from a low cross to stop Al Hassan Toure from equalising. That interception proved to be a defining moment as Central Coast held on to their narrow lead to take the three points.

Rowles is still a young individual and his exposure to the first team as well as learning under respected coach Alen Stajcic will be the perfect development as he looks to fight his way into the Olyroos squad in Tokyo.