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Dark skies made the crowd of 14527 at Hillsborough Park a little nervous, but the rain held off. Benoît Cantieni was the appointed referee. People from all over Victoria had joined up for the rivalry game. Gentlemen prefer blondes and Melbourne prefers a 4-4-2. Let's see how this plays out for them. Lineup: Paiva - Stravocheris, Jousmäki, Woe, de Beuker - Hernesniemi, McGrady, Lančić, Brener - Teodorof, Juntumaa.

Our studio analysts were correct. Ravens has taken the field in a 4-5-1 alignment. They fielded: Węcławek - Sakelaris, Lemić, Archer, Giroldini - Bock, Efimenco, Pham, Kahlig, Bartiakas - Mallat.

A excellent level of counter-attacking seemed to be the preferred strategy of Melbourne. Today, Ravens's strategy involved concentrating on the flanks for their attacks, taking advantage of their brilliant ability. Melbourne took the lead 3 minutes in, as M. Juntumaa broke through on the left and put his shot just beyond the reach of the outstretched keeper, bringing the score to 1 - 0. Ravens were determined to attack down the sideline and their central attempts were constantly abandoned in favor of the wings. The visitors wouldn't quit and after 9 minutes, V. Efimenco evened things up as he finished off a perfect pass from the right. 1 - 1. With the clock showing 26 minutes played, a great pass from the defensive line of Melbourne resulted in a counter-attack that was smoothly brought under control by Y. Brener in the center of the opposition's penalty area, but his finish went high. 31 minutes into the game, V. Efimenco had a great chance to put his team ahead, but his kick from the left went wide. It was obvious that Ravens had instructions to attack on the wings instead of in the middle. It was 1 - 1 at the break. Looks like Nate Silver was right again - his prediction that Ravens would have 68 percent possession in this half was spot on!

After 52 minutes, the visitors nearly went up a goal, but J. Archer's free kick hit the crossbar. Melbourne's Y. Brener made use of his speed to get free of his marker, but he still couldn't get a shot off after 57 minutes. R. de Beuker of Melbourne finished off the counter-attack from the left rather easily, making it 2 - 1. A magnificent combination in the middle resulted in Melbourne's Y. Brener bringing the lead up to 3 - 1. Melbourne's N. Teodorof wanted to play on, but after 70 minutes the decision was made to give M. Maitena a chance in his place. E. Hernesniemi had put in a good 70 minutes and left the field with a smile on his face due to his team's lead. S. Morgan was the replacement. Maybe N. Sakelaris should join the aquatics team instead. He went down dramatically after 72 minutes, crying out with agony as he fell. The referee was not impressed, though, and showed him a yellow for diving. The forty-five minutes were dominated by Ravens, with an impressive 65 percent possession of the ball.

The most outstanding Melbourne player was without a doubt D. McGrady. I can't remember M. Juntumaa ever having a worse night than he just had. Ravens's top performer was clearly J. Bock. You can tell it was nickel beer night yesterday at the local bar because J. Pham seemed to stumble all over the pitch. The match ends 3 - 1.

Rating details

Midfield wretched (very high) inadequate (very low) 8 17 2/20 5/20
Right defense inadequate (very high) weak (high) 20 15 5/20 4/20
Central defense passable (very high) passable (very high) 24 24 6/20 6/20
Left defense passable (low) passable (very high) 22 24 6/20 6/20
Right attack inadequate (high) poor (very high) 19 12 5/20 3/20
Central attack weak (high) poor (high) 15 11 4/20 3/20
Left attack inadequate (high) inadequate (very low) 19 17 5/20 5/20
Indirect set pieces
Defense inadequate (very low) inadequate (very low) 17 17 5/20 5/20
Attack weak (high) weak (high) 15 15 4/20 4/20
Team attitude (Hidden) (Hidden)
Tactic Counter-attacks Attack on wings
Tactic skill excellent brilliant 8 11 8/20 11/20


1 - 0  M. Juntumaa 3'
1 - 1  V. Efimenco 9'
2 - 1  R. de Beuker 60'
3 - 1  Y. Brener 67'
1 card accumulated N. Sakelaris 72'
Substitution Out  N. Teodorof
In  M. Maitena
Substitution Out  E. Hernesniemi
In  S. Morgan
Normal To  Toward Middle



Chance distribution

Home Away
5 8

2 Left attack 3
2 Central attack 1
0 Right attack 3
0 Other 1
1 Special events 0
Detailed match analysis is not available for matches more than two seasons old.

Rating details

Please note that the percentages above are meant to guide you, but they do not equate to the exact probabilities (to score for example) used in the match engine.

Indirect set pieces

Defense inadequate (very low) inadequate (very low) 17 17 5/20 5/20
Attack weak (high) weak (high) 15 15 4/20 4/20


Team attitude (Hidden) (Hidden)
Tactic Counter-attacks Attack on wings
Tactic skill excellent brilliant 8 11 8/20 11/20

Average ratings

Total player experience poor (high) wretched (low) 11 6 3/20 2/20
Average midfield wretched (very high) inadequate (very low) 8 17 2/20 5/20
Average defense passable (low) passable (very low) 22 21 6/20 6/20
Average attack inadequate (low) weak (very low) 18 13 5/20 4/20
Total average weak (very high) inadequate (very low) 16 17 4/20 5/20


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