Another season of Hyundai A-League Football is in the books, and the Central Coast Mariners are at the top of the Power Rankings to close out the season, denying the Western Sydney Wanderers the fairytale ending they had hoped for. Let’s take one last look at the A-League Power Rankings here on the View from Avalon.
1. Central Coast Mariners
Graham Arnold’s Central Coast Mariners ended the regular season with a 16-6-5 record and opened their Finals Series with a 1-0 victory over Melbourne Victory on Apr. 14. Daniel McBreen scored in the 42nd minute at Bluetongue Stadium in Gosford. On Sunday, goals from Patrick Zwaanswijk in the 44th minute and McBreen in the 68th minute paces the Mariners to a 2-0 upset of Western Sydney in the A-League Grand Final at Allianz Stadium in Sydney.
2. Western Sydney Wanderers
Tony Popovic’s Western Sydney Wanderers finished the regular season with a 18-3-6 record and the Premiership Plate. On April 12, goals from Dino Kresinger in the 16th minute and Shinji Ono in the 16th minute gave the Wanderers a 2-0 victory over Brisbane Roar at Parramatta Stadium inn Sydney. However, they were unable to get their mojo going on Sunday against Central Coast and played their worst football of the season en route to a 2-0 shutout defeat in the A-League Grand Final at Allianz Stadium.
3. Melbourne Victory
Ange Postecoglou’s Melbourne Victory finished third on the A-League ladder with a record of 13-5-9. It took their extra time to get the job done, but goals from Mark Milligan in the first minute of second half stoppage time and Archie Thompson in the 95th minute paced the Victory to a 2-1 victory over Perth Glory in the Elimination Finals at Etihad Stadium in Melbourne on Apr. 5. The semi-finals saw Melbourne capitulate at the hands of the eventual champions, the Central Coast Mariners 1-0.
4. Brisbane Roar
Mike Mulvey’s Brisbane Roar had to weather a managerial change en route to a 10-5-12 record. In the elimination finals, Luke Brattan scored in the 28th minute and Ivan Franjic scored in the second minute of first-half injury time to give the Roar a 2-1 victory over Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium in Adelaide on Apr. 7. Unfortunately for Brisbane, that’s all they could muster up as they were waxed by Western Sydney 2-0 at Parramatta Stadium.
5. Perth Glory
Alistair Edwards’s Perth Glory was another team that went through a managerial change. It seemed to worked, as they got into the playoffs with a 9-5-13 record and a superior goal difference to Sydney FC (-2 to -10). Despite a 15th minute score from Ryo Nagai, Melbourne Victory left it very late and left Perth looking for answers in the offseason as they were eliminated 2-1 at Etihad Stadium.
6. Adelaide United
Also going through a managerial change was Michael Valkanis’s Adelaide United, who came into the Finals Series with a 10-5-12 record. A goal from Dario Vidosic in the 89th minute came too late for the Reds, who were silenced by Brisbane Roar 2-1 at Hindmarsh Stadium.
7. Sydney FC
Despite coming in to try to save Sydney FC, interim manager Frank Farina was unable to do so as the Sky Blues faltered to a 9-5-13 record and missed the playoffs by way of an inferior goal differential. A futile November comntimed with just a 2-1-3 record (seven points) in December doomed Sydney’s chances, and they never recoved from their early-season slump.
8. Newcastle Jets
Gary van Egmond’s Newcastle Jets also slumped through December, earning just one victory en route to an 8-7-12 record. However, the Jets missed the plot entirely in March, losing three and drawing once, with zero victories.
9. Melbourne Heart
John Aloisi’s Melbourne Heart knocked themselves out of contention entirely, losing every match they had in match and finished their 2012-13 campaign with a 8-3-16 record. It also didn’t help that they had a 1-1-3 record in December.
10. Wellington Phoenix
Chris Greenacre’s Wellington Phoenix finish the season at the bottom of the View from Avalon’s A-League Power Rankings with a 7-6-14 record. Cold spells in January (0-1-4) and February (1-1-3) doomed the Nix, who are left to figure out what went wrong in the offseason, and it all came horribly wrong for New Zealand’s entry in this young competition.