A-League Men Team of the Week: Round 16

The Inner Sanctum presents the Round 16 A-League Men Team of the Week. (Photos: Western United; Macarthur FC; Melbourne City)

The Inner Sanctum has put together a team of the week comprised of the best performing players that took part in Round 15 of the A-League Men season.

Round 16 of the competition offered us only four A-League games but most of them provided real entertainment. Western United continued their unbeaten streak, while Melbourne City won the derby against Sydney FC at Nestrata Jubilee Stadium.

Following the latest set of fixtures we’ve compiled the best XI from the stand-out performers, here is The Inner Sanctum’s Team of the Week.

Goalkeepers and Defenders

GK: Mark Birighitti (Central Coast Mariners)

Birighitti did concede two goals against Adelaide, but his performance was absolutely fantastic. He made four saves, including a penalty stop, and prevented 1.06 xG, which is a very impressive number.

RB: Rhyan Grant (Sydney FC)

The Socceroos full-back makes his second consecutive appearance in our TOTW, despite his sides losing on the big occasion against City. Grant’s runs from deep were a real weapon for Sydney down the right and on another day he could have had at least two assists.

CB: Tomislav Uskok (Macarthur FC)

On his return to the starting XI, Uskok not only scored a great header but also defended extremely well. According to FotMob, the former NPL defender made one block, completed four clearness, and won four out of six aerial duels.

CB: Nikolai Topor-Stanley (Western United)

Topor-Stanley rolled back the years with an outstanding showing against Perth on Sunday night. He was imperious in defence, but the highlight of his performance was the through-ball assist for Prijovic’s opener.

LB: Ben Garuccio (Western United)

Just like the full-back on the other side, Garuccio makes his second consecutive appearance in our team, after another good game. Assisted Pierias’ goal with an excellent first-time cross and was defensively solid throughout the full 90.

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Midfielders

DM: Juande (Adelaide United)

The Spaniard had arguably his best game in an Adelaide shirt. Shielded the back four extremely well (completed the most tackles) and set the tone for the Reds in attack with his progressive passing.

CM: Mustafa Amini (Sydney FC)

The former Borussia Dortmund midfielder was on top of his game against City and impressed massively, mainly with his playmaking qualities. Amini completed three out of three attempted dribbles, six out of 7 long balls, made two key passes, and accumulated a total of 0.34 xA (Expected assists).

CM: Tommy Oar (Macarthur FC)

Oar picked up a Man of the Match award for his display against the Jets and his goal (see below) in that game, alone, is worth a place in our TOTW. Absolute rocket of a volley!

Forwards

RW: Beni Nkololo (Central Coast Meriners)

Nkololo was the best performer for the Mariners against Adelaide in the Pride Game. The Frenchman scored his second goal of the season with a tidy finish and was a real nuisance for the Reds’ defenders.

ST: Aleksandar Prijovic (Western United)

Prijovic is becoming a real mainstay in the Inner Sanctum’s TOTW. Western United’s Serbian forward led the line expertly against Perth and scored his fifth goal of the season with a superb finish.

LW: Mathew Leckie (Melbourne City)

Leckie was involved in both goals for City in their big game against Sydney FC. The Socceroos captain forced Retre into scoring an own-goal in the first half and it was his low shot that won the fixture for Kisnorbo’s in the dying stages.

A-League Men Team of the Week: Round 16

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