Following a relatively disappointing summer for the national team, A-League football returns in Australia and it promises to be yet another fascinating season.
Whilst much of the pre-season intrigue has centered around Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt signing (and scoring) for Central Coast Mariners, the talking will soon be at an end and the action can begin.
Sydney FC romped to the title last season but Melbourne Victory were crowned champions following the dramatic season ending-play offs and there look to be plenty of suitable contenders once again this term.
Here are some of our pre-season predictions:
2018/19 A-League Outright Winner Predictions & Tips
Sydney FC @ $5 – BET NOW
It promises to be another fascinating season for the Sky Blues who have lost star striker Bobo as well as Head Coach Graham Arnold in the off-season, leaving question marks as to where they are at this campaign.
After storming the league but losing out to Melbourne Victory in heart-breaking fashion in the play-offs last season, they will be looking to bounce back this season under the stewardship of Steve Corica and with new recruits Adam le Fondre and Siem de Jong in their ranks, they certainly have the fire power to be very much in contention once again this time around.
Melbourne City @ $6 – BET NOW
Big-spending Melbourne City have yet to make a significant impact in the A-League – with only one FFA Cup to show for all their investment.
Warren Joyce will be hoping to impart his experience and knowledge to the players as he looks to build a squad capable of breaking their duck.
Prolific striker Bruno Fornaroli will once again lead the line with the likes of Luke Brattan and Dario Vidosic flanking him to forge a prolific attack.
They have shored up defensively too with the acquisition of Richie de Laet and they look to be mounting a serious challenge once again this term.
Melbourne Victory @ $6.50 – BET NOW
Last year’s play-off Champions Melbourne Victory timed their run to perfection in the last campaign and will be looking to do the same again this year.
No nonsense gaffer, Kevin Muscat inspired his men incredibly well last season and he will need to do the same this term following the departure of Besart Berisha.
He has opted to bring in experience in the forms of Keisuke Honda and Ola Toivonen and they look well placed to be in the mix once again this season.
Newcastle Jets @ $8.50 – BET NOW
Ernie Merrick will be hoping to clinch his 3rd A-League as a manager as the Newcastle Jets prepare for another campaign in the top flight.
Their 2nd placed showing was a solid return last season and with the summer acquisitions of Matthew Ridenton and Jair Eduardo, they look to have strengthened sufficiently to maintain a sustained title challenge this year and could well be the team to watch out for.
Golden Boot Winner Predictions & Tips
Bruno Fornaroli, Melbourne City $6.50 – BET NOW
With 47 goals in 66 A-League appearances, Bruno Fornaroli is absolutely prolific at this level. The Uruguayan missed much of last season due to a broken ankle but returned in style at the end of the campaign and his late winner in the FFA Cup against Brisbane Roar this summer – could be a sign of things to come.
Adam le Fondre, Sydney FC $7 – BET NOW
Former Reading striker Adam le Fondre is one of the biggest names to have moved down under in the off-season and he will be hoping his predatory instincts in front of goal can fire Sydney up the table.
Despite not having played much football in England for Bolton, he is a proven goal scorer at every level he has played at – including the Premier League.
Adam Taggart, Brisbane Roar $8.50 – BET NOW
New signing Adam Taggart is the man Brisbane fans are hoping can propel them into the Top 6 and the Socceroo hitman will be eager to impress at his new club.
With 20 goals in 38 appearances for Perth Glory over the past two seasons, he is proven at this level and will want to hit the ground running for Brisbane Roar.
Ross McCormack, Central Coast Mariners $8.75 – BET NOW
Scottish forward Ross McCormack has moved from Melbourne City to the Mariners in the off-season and has spoken of his excitement at teaming up with Usain Bolt.
His remarkable goal record of 13 goals in 15 games for City will be something the Mariners will be hoping to utilise in what promises to be an entertaining season.
Wooden Spoon Predictions & Tips
With relegation not an option in the A-League, teams can play with freedom, safe in the knowledge they won’t be facing the drop but every side will be eager to avoid finishing bottom of the table.
Wellington Phoenix @ $2.75 – BET NOW
Mark Rudan’s Kiwis will be hoping to improve upon their 9th placed finish last season and steer clear of the bottom of the table. The departures of Matthew Ridenton and Andrija Kaluderovic look to have given them a real challenge this season and could well struggle.
Central Coast Mariners @ $3.65 – BET NOW
Having goals in the team is the key element for the Mariners an in the form of Ross McCormack – they look well set. Their defence will once again be the issue and Mike Mulvey will be keen to see his team avenge their last place finish last season.
Brisbane Roar @ $6 – BET NOW
Another team that have opted for goals, in the form of Adam Taggart, Brisbane will be looking up the table rather than down this season and under the stewardship of John Aloisi, should be absolutely fine this term.