ACL Preview: City v Buriram

AFC Champions League football is back in Melbourne tonight as your City boys look to keep their winning momentum rolling.

We’ll face Buriram United for the second time in two weeks as we continue a busy week of football at home.

All full-season City Members will be able to redeem a complimentary ticket via Ticketek using their member number. Click here to get tickets!

We take a look at a few of the key storylines heading into tonight’s fixture!

Continuing our strong ACL form

At the midway point of the Group Stage, we currently sit on top of the Group H table, three points and goal difference clear of Ventforet Kofu.

We’ve taken seven points from our first three fixtures, including two impressive away wins on the road.

Image: AFC Champions League

The most recent of which came against tonight’s opponent in Thailand just a fortnight ago.

After being on the back foot for the first 15 minutes, we flipped the switch not long after and were able to get a hold of the momentum.

A bullet of a header from Alessandro Lopane and an impressive volley from Jamie Maclaren – both assisted by Marin Jakolis crosses from the left hand side – saw us head into the break with a two-goal buffer.

A professional defensive performance ensured there was no opening for Buriram, making it a second consecutive ACL win after our 2-1 triumph in China against Zhejiang.

A familiar opponent, but a new approach?

While that last meeting was just a fortnight ago, there’s been one major change at City.

Aurelio Vidmar is now at the helm and began his tenure with an impressive 2-0 win over Sydney FC in the A-League at the weekend.

Now set to take charge of City in the ACL for the first time, it remains to be seen if he’ll look to change much from that win in Buriram just two weeks ago.

On his side will be an intimate knowledge of our opponents after having spent years coaching against them in the Thai League.

Now with a few extra training sessions to prepare his team after just two last week prior to his first match in charge, City fans will likely see some more glimpses as to how their team will perform under our new manager.

Will we see any new faces in the starting XI?

It’s another busy week at City as we tonight play the second of three games in just over a week, so there could be a chance Vidmar looks to rotate his squad.

Samuel Souprayen is someone who could be in line for a return to the XI should that be the case, with the Frenchman boasting the capability to play either at the heart of defence or on the left.

Terry Antonis and Zane Schreiber have been impressive in recent midfield cameos and could come under consideration again tonight should the likes of a Hamza Sakhi, Tolgay Arslan or Steveen Ugarkovic need a rest.

One name City fans will certainly be hoping to see in the line-up is Leo Natel.

The Brazilian has been steadily building up his load since arriving at the club and would appear a first start isn’t too far away.

Match Details

AFC Champions League: Matchday 4

Melbourne City FC v Buriram United

Wednesday 8 November, 8:00pm

Melbourne Rectangular Stadium