All the juicy little details for Melbourne Victory and Sydney FC's epic semi showdown.
A-League Second Semi-Final: Sydney FC v Melbourne Victory
Sunday, May 12 - 7pm - Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sydney
Second-placed finishers - 16 wins, 4 draws, 7 losses, +14 goal difference
Third-placed finishers - 15 wins, 5 draws, 7 losses, +18 goal difference
defeated Wellington Phoenix 3-1 in elimination final
Sydney FC: The Sky Blues finished the campaign strongly, including a contentious 2-1 win over Victory at the SCG to lock down second place and a week off. A last round loss to Newcastle should be disregarded.
Victory: Losses last month to Sydney FC and Adelaide left Victory without hosting rights in this clash but Victory blew out the cobwebs last week against Wellington. Has beaten every side this season.
Rd 5: Sydney FC 1-2 Victory, Netstrata Jubilee Stadium
Rd 16: Victory 2-1 Sydney FC, AAMI Park
Rd 24: Sydney FC 2-1 Victory, SCG
Sydney FC: Steve Corica. Corica has stepped out of the shadow of Graham Arnold with a distinguished finish in his first season at the helm. Finishing only behind Tony Popovic's runaway premiers Perth Glory, Corica will be quietly confident.
Victory: Kevin Muscat. The restless Victory leader has been chipper since their defeat of Wellington as he seeks a shot at a record fifth title. Third place was below par but Muscat knows he has the players to win again.
Sydney FC: Adam le Fondre. The Englishman has scored in the big games this season, including their recent defeat of Perth. Possesses the uncanny ability to be in the right place at the right time and his 20 goals this campaign shows that.
Victory: Kosta Barbarouses. The Kiwi flyer has had his best A-League season. He scored last week, scored in last year's grand final, scored in last year's semi-final. A mid-week report that the Sky Blues might pounce on the out-of-contract forward was mischievously timed.
Where to begin? Sydney FC and Victory share an incredible wealth of classics and confrontation over 49 previous clashes - including three grand finals, two won by the Sky Blues on penalties. Last year's 3-2 extra-time semi-final has claims of being the best A-League game of all time. Another chapter will be written.
HOW SYDNEY FC WINS
They score first. Victory are great frontrunners and must be contained. Alex Wilkinson's marking job on Ola Toivonen looms as a key battle.
HOW VICTORY WINS
They turn up and roll on. Victory's reputation as a big game team is unsurpassed and they were exceptional last week against Wellington. Keisuke Honda must make a midfield impact.
After Friday night's thriller, is it too much to expect another drama-packed occasion? Sydney FC on penalties.