Words: ACFC Media
Friday 22 January 2021
AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Auckland City FC's title hopes get major boost as All Whites caps Sam Brotherton and Kayne Vincent sign on ahead of Gridlock Derby.
Vincent, 32, and Brotherton, 24, join the club after stints in Thailand and the US. Vincent, whose sole international cap for the All Whites came in a defeat to Thailand six years ago, will provide competition for places up front while Brotherton, a defender, has won 12 caps for New Zealand.
Coach Jose Figueira was delighted to have both players confirmed ahead of Sunday's Gridlock Derby showdown at Madill's Farm against an Eastern Suburbs side that has suffered inconsistency in 2021.
"Kayne will provide us with another option in the attacking line and provides extra competition for places keeping other people on their toes. Sam has slotted straight in and hit the ground running.
"I've kept both players on the radar for some time and we're delighted they've chosen to be with us at Auckland City FC," Figueira told www.aucklandcityfc.com.
Sunday's match may have come too soon for both Brotherton and Vincent with Figueira playing his cards close to his chest about team selection three days out from kick-off.
The squad is in a strong place with the exception being Emiliano Tade who continues to rehab a niggling calf injury.
Figueira said he has emphasised the importance of staying focused as the final edition of the ISPS Handa Premiership enters the final stretch and teams clamber over each other eager to snatch a playoff spot.
"A fit, strong, healthy squad is very important headed into the business end of the season and Eastern Suburbs presents us with a very tough challenge.
"You've only got to look at the competition this year to see just how close things are. Teams from top to bottom, on their day, are capable of taking points off each other.
"Eastern Suburbs are no different - no doubt they'll be looking to bounce back after a downturn in form and we've got to make sure we're right at the top of our game.
"My main message to our players is about momentum.
"We're on a three game winning run and the players are hungry to continue that and their application and appetite in training to refine the things that we do and the way we play and approach things has been fantastic.
"We want to continue that momentum going into Sunday's game," he said.
The match at Madill's Farm kicks off at 4pm NZDT.
ISPS Handa Men's Premiership
Sunday 24 January, 2021
Eastern Suburbs AFC v Auckland City FC
Madills Farm, Kohimarama
Kick-off: 4pm NZDT
AC: 24. Cam BROWN (GK), 2. Mario ILICH, 3. Adam MITCHELL, 4. Mario BILEN, 6. Brian KALTAK, 7. Cam HOWIESON, 8. Albert RIERA, 9. Kayne VINCENT, 10. Dylan MANICKUM, 11. Tom DOYLE, 12. Sam BROTHERTON, 13. Dre VOLLENHOVEN, 14. Jordan VALE, 15. Aidan CAREY, 16. Yousif Ali AL-KALISY, 17. Andrew BLAKE, 18. Conor TRACEY (GK), 19. Logan ROGERSON, 20. Emiliano TADE, 21. Maro BONSU-MARO, 22. Alfie ROGERS, 23. Mohamed AWAD.
COACH: Jose FIGUEIRA.
Saturday 23 January, 2021
Waitakere United v Canterbury United
Seddon Fields, Auckland - kick-off: 3.30pm NZDT
Sunday 24 January, 2021
Hamilton Wanderers v Hawke's Bay United
Porritt Stadium, Hamilton - kick-off: 2pm NZDT
Team Wellington v Wellington Phoenix
David Farrington Park, Wellington - kick-off: 4pm NZDT
The top scorer in the Gridlock Derby is Emiliano Tade. The Argentine forward has netted six goals in this fixture since 2016-17 season.
Eastern Suburbs AFC are yet to register a victory over Auckland City FC since they rejoined the top flight in 2016-17 season. In ten matches, Auckland City FC have won nine encounters with the spoils shared in a goalless draw at Kiwitea Street last year. Eastern Suburbs AFC have scored just three goals over nine matches in this fixture while the Navy Blues have an aggregate of 17.
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (H) won 1-0 (Emiliano TADE)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (H) drew 0-0
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (A) won 2-0 (Myer BEVAN, Brian KALTAK)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (A) won 1-0 (Dylan MANICKUM)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (H) won 3-2 (Micah LEA'ALAFA 2, Brian KALTAK) | (Callum McCOWATT, Dominic WOOLDRIDGE)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (A) won 2-0 (Emiliano TADE, Micah LEA'ALAFA)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (H) won 1-0 (Callum McCOWATT)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (H) won 4-0 (Emiliano TADE 2, Callum McCOWATT, Dalton WILKINS)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (A) won 1-0 (Emiliano TADE)
v. Eastern Suburbs AFC (H) won 2-1 (Joao MOREIRA, Emiliano TADE) | (Moses DYER)
Sunday 4 December 2022, Wellington Olympic, Mount Smart Stadium