Words: ACFC Media
Friday 15 February 2019
AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Auckland City FC may have a 100 percent record against Hamilton Wanderers but the Navy Blues won't take any chances with a team known for scoring goals.
Coached by former All Whites and Wellington Phoenix boss, Ricki Herbert, Hamilton Wanderers started the season with a hiss and a roar but have slowly fallen away from the playoff picture after an inconsistent run since the festive break.
Their hopes of qualifying for the top four ended in a goal glut last week at home to the Canterbury United Dragons but coach Ramon Tribulietx said their Waikato opponents remain a serious threat naming Derek Tieku, Martin Beuno and Tommy Semmy as their chief assets.
"Hamilton Wanderers are capable of scoring a lot of goals with Tieku, Beuno and Semmy. On the defensive side of things they've had problems and I've seen games where they've scored three but conceded four.
"They always manage to score but they concede a lot in transition. A team like Hamilton Wanderers can be very dangerous on a small pitch like Kiwitea Street.
"If you give the ball away a team can hurt you with one pass in the middle third and you're already in the penalty box.
"We'll try to compete for the points available but we're not too sure yet how we'll line up.
"We need to be careful that we don't go from playing too much to falling asleep and lose our edge.
"We can't do too much of either, it's important we assess our fitness and if anyone has any niggles we won't take any risks.
"We will need to think about the players who missed Southern United with the OFC Champions League in our mind.
"The OFC Champions League opener is very close now and we need to make sure that we don't relax too much which would be a mistake," Tribulietx told www.aucklandcityfc.com.
The OFC Champions League is well underway with Group A and Group B to be completed by the time Sunday's ISPS Handa Premiership match rolls around.
Auckland City FC's first match of the Oceania campaign is on February 24 against New Caledonia's AS Magenta.
The match kicks off at 1pm local time.
ISPS Handa Premiership
Sunday 17 February 2019
Auckland City FC v Hamilton Wanderers
Kiwitea Street, Auckland
Kick-off: 4.35pm NZST
AC squad (chosen from): 1. Enaut ZUBIKARAI (GK), 3. Takuya IWATA, 4. Mario BILEN, 5. Angel BERLANGA (c), 6. Brian KALTAK, 7. Cam HOWIESON, 8. Albert RIERA, 9. Javier LOPEZ, 10. Micah LEA'ALAFA, 11. Fabrizio TAVANO, 12. Dylan MANICKUM, 13. patrick LUNDEMO, 14. Jordan VALE, 15. Dan MORGAN, 16. Yousif ALI, 17. Reid DRAKE, 18. Ruben PARKER (GK), 19. David BROWNE, 20. Te Atawhai HUDSON-WIHONGI, 21. Maro BONSU-MARO, 22. Omar GUARDIOLA, 23. Alfie ROGERS, 24. Cameron BROWN (GK), 25. Josh JONES, 26. Jackson WOODS.
COACH: Ramon TRIBULIETX
Sunday 4 December 2022, Wellington Olympic, Mount Smart Stadium