In a Super Saturday of football on both sides of the ditch three results helped to further shape the final six heading into the final four weeks of the A-League season.
Wellington’s impressive home form continued as they put a major dent in Newcastle’s finals hopes at Westpac Stadium.
David Williams filled the gap of leading goal-scorer, Roy Krishna who was out with suspension scoring early on in the piece to give the home side the lead with a well-timed finish.
Williams continued his fantastic form with a goal fifteen minutes after the restart from the penalty spot after an intervention from the VAR saw a tug by Nigel Boogaard inside the area.
Newcastle were able to pull one back when Roy O’Donovan got on the scoresheet to get the away side back into the game but that hope was quickly extinguished when Williams slammed home his third with an absolute beauty.
Sarpreet Singh was able to put the icing on the cake and increased their lead in fifth placed, Melbourne City to four points and now 11 points clear of the Jets inside the finals series.
Newcastle are now five points behind sixth placed Adelaide United and face a must-win game against the Wanderers next Saturday at home while the Phoenix travel to Adelaide to take on the Reds next Sunday.
Western Sydney on the other hand were able to continue their mini resurgence with an impressive three goal win over Melbourne City at ANZ Stadium.
The Wanderers took the lead inside the opening half through Oriol Riera slamming home a spot-kick after Rostyn Griffiths fouled Kwame Yeboah inside the area.
City looked to have completely lost their spark and it showed up front with Jamie Maclaren’s absence hindering much of their creativity up top but Ritchie De Laet was inches away from getting them right back in the game after slamming the wood-work.
Markus Babbel’s men were able to make them pay after Raul Llorente found Mitchell Duke unmarked in the area to double the home side’s lead.
The result was beyond doubt when Riera had a second to seal the result and keep his sides faintest of finals hopes alive as they closed the margin to eight behind Adelaide who are still yet to play.
Melbourne City are now four points behind Wellington in the race for a home-final but still seven points clear of the Jets inside the top six.
Warren Joyce’s men will host the Brisbane Roar on Friday night at AAMI Park as they look to seal their spot in the finals series while the Wanderers face Newcastle in a proverbial six pointer.
At the top of the table, the Melbourne Victory were able to send a major statement defeating Perth Glory on the road by two goals.
After failing to defeat the top of the table Perth in the last two encounters in Melbourne, the Victory were able to silence the home crowd with a scintillating display from start to finish.
Ola Toivonen’s incredible free-kick and the A-League’s 5000th goal gave the away side the lead inside the opening half as Liam Reddy had no chance to stop the big Swede’s curling effort.
Perth came close to pulling one back through Diego Castro when he hit the bar with a free-kick of his own and the near-miss proved costly.
Scott Neville was seen to have handled the ball inside the area after VAR intervention and Keisuke Honda coolly dispatched the penalty to seal what was a massive win for the champions.
The Victory are now within point of Sydney FC as they look to get back in the top two and sit seven points behind the Glory who are at the top of the table.
Melbourne will travel to Sydney for the Big Blue next week in a huge contest against the Sky Blues while Perth will travel to Gosford to take on the bottom placed Central Coast Mariners.