ACL Preview: Zhejiang v City

Our AFC Champions League is set to resume on Wednesday night, with an away trip to China on the cards for your City boys. 

A clash against Chinese Super League side Zhejiang Professional awaits, and after a scoreless draw on Matchday 1, Rado Vidosic’s side will be desperate for all three points. 

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Here’s a few things to keep an eye on when the clash kicks off at 11:00pm (AEDT) on Wednesday night! 

Bouncing back from a pair of tough results 

It’s been a week and a half since we’ve had a taste of some City football after seeing two games in four days at home in late September. 

It was a pair of fixtures we will be looking to forget, first struggling to find a way through in our AFC Champions League opener against Ventforet Kofu that ended in a scoreless draw, then seeing our Australia Cup run come to an end at the hands of Sydney FC in the Semi Final. 

The time has come now for a chance to bounce back, so expect your City boys to be fired up and ready to put that behind them and fight for an important three points on Wednesday. 

Nothing will come easy against Zhejiang, who currently sit third on the Chinese Super League ladder and are 27 games into their season, while we of course are yet to begin ours. 

They come into Wednesday night off back-to-back wins, having scored eight goals across those fixtures. 

How does the back four look? 

Those previous two fixtures have proven that Zhejiang have no problem finding the back of the net, which will make our defensive selections even more important. 

Goalkeeper Jamie Young has been one of City’s best in the early stages of the campaign so will be locked in to start once again, but the four in front of him have only been the same from the start twice in five matches so far. 

Our last fixture saw Curtis Good – who had played in each of the previous four matches – miss after pulling up sore from the Kofu game, but now having fully recovered and made the trip to China, expect him to come under serious consideration to return to the XI. 

The versatility of Samuel Souprayen, Jordon Hall and Nuno Reis will certainly be a factor, with all three capable of being used as full backs or in the heart of defence. 

Callum Talbot and Scott Galloway – who is yet to start a fixture after missing the early stages of pre-season due to injury – have both been used as fullbacks on either side of defence, so there is no shortage in options for VIdosic and his staff. 

Leaving everything on the pitch 

While we had a busy schedule prior to this game and will once again following the start of the A-Leagues season, Wednesday presents itself as an outlier. 

Like the first, our remaining four Group Stage matches will be played on either side of another competitive fixture. 

This time around though, we’ve had a week and a half to prepare since we were last on the pitch and following Wednesday night, we’ll have over two weeks to get ready to begin the A-Leagues season. 

Expect to see a City side raring to go and ready to give their all with plenty of time to rest and recover following the China trip! 

Match Details 

AFC Champions League: Matchday 2 
Zhejiang Professional v Melbourne City FC 
Wednesday 4 October, 11:00pm KO (AEST) 
Huzhou Olympic Sports Centre