The Nix Fix: On top of the world

Gone Ernie Gone

The Wellington Phoenix have risen to the top of the A-League standings following a spectacular 2-1 victory away to Perth Glory on Saturday night.

It’s the first time the Nix have ever been on top of the table at this late stage of the season with the Wellington lads holding a slim one point lead over Sydney FC. Melbourne Victory round out the top three, two points back of the Nix, although they do have a game in hand.

The Nix travelled to Perth as underdogs, largely due to the absence of Alex Rodriguez and golden boot contender Nathan Burns. Although this shouldn’t have concerned Nix fans as each time Nathan Burns has been absent they have managed to win their match.

The match started out fairly evenly with both teams looking threatening on attack before Roy Krishna opened the scoring in the 23rd minute. The Fijian striker applied pressure to defender Josh Risdon whose attempted clearance found an outstretched Krishna foot and ricocheted in.

The celebrations were short lived as Ruben Zadkovich scored a contender for goal of the season just minutes later with a long range screamer that rebounded off the post past a helpless Glen Moss to level the scores. Heading into the second half both teams would have fancied their chances of finding a match winner however it was the Nix who would come away with the three points courtesy of yet another Krishna goal. Roly Bonevacia, who was at the centre of most attacking moves, played a ball into Krishna in the box who managed to get a shot off with his left foot that beat Vukovic at his near post. Krishna now has nine goals for the season and sits fifth in the golden boot race.

The win was the third in a row for the Nix, adding to wins in the last two weeks over fellow top six contenders Melbourne Victory and Adelaide United.

The Nix now travel to Brisbane to take on the Roar who currently sit just outside the top six. With the A-League not recognising the FIFA international windows, the Nix will likely lose a host of All Whites players plus Burns in the coming weeks. This makes this match up a crucial one in terms of picking up points while the full squad is available.

With Wellington on a roll and playing fantastic football courtesy of Ernie Merrick, Brisbane shouldn’t be able to stop the lads from picking up their second away victory in a row.

About Cam Gordon (77 Articles)
Cam Gordon is a New Zealand based educator with a degree in sports studies. A passionate Wellington Phoenix supporter who still plays competitive football, captaining Parklands United in the Canterbury senior men's grades.
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