McGlinchey calls for Phoenix push for top two

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April 16, 2015 16:28:58 UK

Attacking midfielder Michael McGlinchey says Wellington Phoenix can aim for the top two in the A-League, and put their sticky patch of form behind them.

After winning four in a row to go top of the table, the New Zealand side have not scored in their past three matches.

They suffered back-to-back 3-0 home defeats at the hands of premiership rivals Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory before coming away with a point from a 0-0 draw away to Melbourne City at the weekend.

The Phoenix have never finished any higher than fourth, but are sure of at least matching that this season which will secure a home Elimination Final.

Coach Ernie Merrick has been reticent to talk up the possibility of a top-two finish, which would see them sit out the first week of the finals, but New Zealand international McGlinchey sees no reason why they can’t pull it off.

Both their final two games at home, against Central Coast Mariners and Sydney FC. The Phoenix are 1.53 to beat the Mariners, who are 5.75 with the draw 4.20.

McGlinchey, who won the championship with the Mariners two years ago, said: “At the start of the season it was just top-six but as we progressed and got better and better we adjusted the goal to top-four.

“Now that we’ve got that I think it has to be top-two. We want to finish as high as we can and just finishing the season with a couple of wins is what we want to get the momentum.”

He added: “It doesn’t matter who you play, it’s finals football and anything can happen. We’d just love to get these two home games wrapped up and get the crowd down and put a show on for them.”

Wellington, who have already chalked up a club record 43 points this season, are hopeful of having defender Ben Sigmund back for the Central Coast clash where the Phoenix are 8.00 to win 1-0.

Sigmund, who has missed the last two games with a quad strain, trained on Wednesday.

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