Wanderers hoping to inflict more Sydney Derby pain


Interim head coach Jean-Paul de Marigny has put the Round 3 win over Sydney FC in the past and is focused solely on moving forward as the Wanderers aim to hand their arch-rivals only their second loss of the season.

The second Sydney Derby of the season at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium on Friday night between the resurgent Wanderers and the defending champions and runaway competition leaders is shaping as a game for the ages.

Sydney, unbeaten in their past 13 games, will still be fuming over the 1-0 loss to the Red & Black back in Round 3 on 26 October at Bankwest Stadium – their only defeat so far this season.

The Wanderers are building momentum as they charge towards a spot in the Finals.

This will be de Marigny’s first Sydney Derby in charge of the side as a head coach.

De Marigny was on the bench as an assistant when Mitchell Duke’s goal proved the difference in the long-overdue win in October. While it was a huge win, the former Socceroo said it is consigned to the history books.

“I don’t like to look back, there’s no real energy there,” said de Marigny when asked if he can take anything from that victory.

“It was a long time ago and now it’s about what we can do looking forward.”

Duke, Wilmering

De Marigny conceded, however, that he would like a similar effort from the players to the one they put in against Sydney. 

The Wanderers had their backs to the wall for most of the game but showed huge resilience and fortitude to hold their rivals at bay.

“To be fair, there was one thing we did in that game … the intensity and the desire collectively, we did really well,” said de Marigny.

“In terms of being without the ball, we were desperate and we scored a good goal. Nothing will change, but we just want to be better with the ball.”

Mitchell Duke

Struggling a month ago, the Wanderers appear to have turned things around since de Marigny took the reins.

They are now on a three-game unbeaten run having beaten the Central Coast Mariners, drawn with the Newcastle Jets and handed Adelaide United a 5-2 thumping last week.

The momentum is building and with nine games to go the seventh-placed Red & Black are in the hunt for a spot in the finals.

“The mood is very positive and our preparation (for the Sydney Derby) has been very good, very calm,” said de Marigny. “The output at training has been very positive.

“There’s a good vibe around the place and everyone is in a good space.

“It’s about (having) a positive mindset and we worked on that from day one and it’s pleasing to see people are taking forward steps and enjoying their football.”

While De Marigny acknowledged the quality of Sydney FC, he said the focus is solely on his team.  

“They haven’t changed, they have been very successful, a very good side. Steve (Corica) is doing a really good job,” said de Marigny.

“They haven’t changed too much in terms of their structure, but in saying that, we are a good side also.

“We have great players. They are in a real positive mindset and it is a real good opportunity for us to make a statement.

“We know Sydney’s strengthens and weaknesses and it is all about us to take advantage of that.”