Welcome to Wanderland, well Mudgee’s version of it anyway.
Western Sydney’s first home game of the 2018-19 A-League season will be staged at Glen Willow on Saturday, the red and blacks hosting Brisbane Roar for the twilight clash.
The Wanderers are coming off a last-start, 3-0 thumping of Wellington in round three while Brisbane makes the trip to the Central West without a win nearing the end of the first month of the season.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Saturday’s historic, A-League clash at Mudgee:
GATES OPEN: 4.15pm
SHUTTLE BUSES: A free shuttle bus service will run to help you get to and from the match. Shuttle buses will run between 4pm and 6pm every 10 to 15 minutes.
The shuttle buses will stop at Mudgee Tourist Office, St Matthew’s Catholic School, Mudgee High School (Perry St), Mudgee Racecourse and the stadium.
Return services will commence from 19:30.
DRIVING: Parking is available near the following Shuttle Bus stops:
- Mudgee Racecourse (Ulan Road)
- Mudgee High School (Denison Street, Horatio Street/Castlereagh Highway, Perry Street)
- St Matthew’s School (Lewis Street)
Alternatively, parking is available at Lawson Park (on Short Street). From here, the stadium is approximately a 15 minute walk.
Please note: public car parking is not available at the stadium.
1 Danijel NIZIC (GK), 4 Josh RISDON, 5 Brendan HAMILL, 7 Nick FITZGERALD, 8 Jordan O’DOHERTY, 9 Oriol RIERA, 10 Alex BAUMJOHANN, 11 Bruce KAMAU, 12 Ruon TONGYIK, 13 Tass MOURDOUKOUTAS, 16 Jaushua SOTIRIO, 17 Keanu BACCUS, 20 Vedran JANJETOVIC (GK), 21 Tarek ELRICH, 22 Rashid MAHAZI, 24 Raul LLORENTE, 28 Roly BONEVACIA, 49 Abraham MAJOK.
Goal-keepers: 1 Brendan WHITE, 21 Jamie YOUNG; Defenders: 2 Dane INGHAM, 4 Daniel BOWLES, 6 Avram PAPADOPOULOS, 8 Jacob PEPPER, 19 Jack HINGERT, 24 Connor O'TOOLE; Midfielders: 7 Thomas KRISTENSEN, 14 Alex LOPEZ, 17 Matt MCKAY (c), 18 Joe CALETTI; Attackers: 9 Adam TAGGART, 11 Eric BAUTHEAC, 22 Tobias MIKKELSEN, 23 Dylan WENZEL-HALLS, 33 HENRIQUE, 26 Daniel LECK
AFTER THREE ROUNDS:
WANDERERS: Won: 1; Draw: 1; Loss: 1; Ladder position: 4th.
ROAR: Won: 0; Draw: 2; Loss: 1; Ladder position: 8th.
- Roar have won just one of their last five games against Western Sydney in NSW, despite leading at half-time three times in that span.
- Wanderers have won three of their last six home games at venues other than Parramatta Stadium or Spotless Stadium.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Brisbane left winger Eric Bauthéac
Roar’s marquee left winger, Eric Bauthéac endured a horrid debut season in Brisbane but all signs to start 2018 suggest those days are over.
The veteran Frenchman put together a decorated career at home, playing with Saint-Étienne, Lille, Dijon, Nice and Cannes before coming to Australia, and after a full pre-season is finally living up the hype.
A goal-scorer, Bauthéac, 31, is Brisbane’s most important player, boasting a 73.1 per cent pass success rate and a 68.8 per cent long pass success rate.
He’s the key.
WSW Oriol Riera centre-forward
Western Sydney Wanderers centre-forward Oriol Riera is one to keep your eye on come Saturday’s kick-off.
Fast and physical on the ball and with great aerial ability, the 32-year-old is the highest paid Wanderer ($2.4m), joining the Wanderers as a marquee player last year.
He was crowned as the club’s golden boot winner (2017-18) for scoring the most goals in a season and won the WSW A-League Player of the Year award and Rod Allen Media Award at the Wanderers Medal 2018.
Can find the back of the net.