Are you as excited as us about the 2023-24 A-League season? We've been waiting a while for this, but now the A-League is finally upon us. A lot has changed over the last few months since the Central Coast Mariners won, so we are super keen to see how each team will perform.
Before the first match kicks off, let us take you through a preview of what we think will happen throughout the A-League season. And as you know, the pressure cooker of the season can spit up many interesting results – so there is bound to be a number of curveballs.
Well, who better than former A-League star, Jake Barker-Daish, to take you through what he thinks of the upcoming A-League season. Check out all our soccer tips below:
Top Teams in the A-League
Sydney FC – If pre-season form is anything to go by Sydney FC are the team to beat as they gained their first title since 2018. They looked very good going forward and Joe Lolley looks like the x-factor within their team who has the capability to both score and assist.
Melbourne Victory – I don’t think Melbourne Victory could get any worse after last season and I've said a motivated Tony Popovic will create the fittest team in the league. I think Victory might already have the best defense in the league on paper which will set the foundation for their key players of Daniel Arzani, Jake Brimmer and Bruno Fornaroli to make the goals going forward.
Melbourne City – They continue to impress me year on year and every time I think to write them off, they find a way to win the league again. They have brought in quality on top of what they already have with Aziz Behich coming home, the creativity of Terry Antonis and also import Tolgay Arslan. They have the best striker in the league with Jamie Maclaren so you know they will get 20+ goal season from their striker which always puts you into contention in the A-League.
Bottom Teams in the A-League
Central Coast – I am predicting a drop off from last season with the losses of Garang Kuol, Sam Silvera and Jason Cummings. All three individuals made the difference in this squad last year in big games and the feeling I get is they will have a target on their back this season which will make it harder for them to gain the same level of success as they did last season.
Wellington Phoenix – They have had some change in the off season and always gain the advantage of the international away game to the whole league which never makes Wellington an easy game. However, I don’t think enough quality business was done in the off season to make them a contender. They have quality going forward and had some decent hit outs in pre-season against A-League opposition, but I think across the 27-game season they will struggle to make finals.
Western United – They have practically had their soul of the club ripped out with captain Alessandro Diamanti and Nikolai Topor-Stanley retiring, which I think will be a bigger loss than expected particularly from a leadership perspective. It is almost like a reset, and we will find out what this squad is capable of come the first game of the season. New additions of James Donachie and Angus Thurgate bring quality, but will it be enough to compete with the top 4 in the league, I still have my doubts.
Who Will Win the 2023-24 A-League?
Melbourne City for me are still the favourites for many reasons. They have the best and most proven goalscorer in the league along with Mathew Leckie who still maintains a level that can pick apart teams in the A-League. Tolgay Arslan from all reports sounds like a real signing that is going to be the creative playmaker City need.
Other great domestic signings like Ugarkovic and Antonis add depth to an already successful team. This club has practically won the home and away premiership the last few years and has fallen short in the Grand Final which leaves a point to prove for Melbourne City.
We told you our A-League season preview was on point! If reading our A-League season preview has got you all fired up, make sure you head on over to the Dabble app, get all your bets sorted and share your thoughts in the Banter channel.