PREVIEW: Knights V North Geelong

Melbourne Knights welcome sister-club North Geelong Warriors to Knights Stadium on Friday night, in a must win fixture for both sides.

The Knights luckless run continued last week away to Green Gully, throwing away all three points in a horror final 5 minutes despite leading and having a man advantage.

Now winless in their past 5 league matches, the Knights find themselves unexpectedly in a battle against relegation sitting in 12th position. The rest of the league continues to remain tight and a string of wins could see the Knights move right back up the table.

Injuries and suspensions has been a constant thorn in Andrew Marth’s squad this season, although there should be some respite with goalkeeper Fraser Chalmers available for selection following suspension, and Tom Cahill closing in on a return from injury.

Visitors North Geelong have had a dismal start to the season, picking up just four draws so far in the season. Despite being competitive in most of their matches, the Warriors haven’t celebrated a victory since their Promotion Playoff victory back in September last year.

Away from home isn’t pretty either for the Warriors, picking up just two points from five starts and shipping an average of 3 goals a game.

Despite their troubles finding the back of the net this season, key forward Kene Eze will pose the main threat for the Warriors, and will be looking to rekindle his form which set NPL2 alight last season.

There is also a potential family rivalry brewing, as Knights youngster Luke Jurcic could square up against Brother Nicholas from the Warriors. Another familiar name in the Warriors squad is Ivan Grgic who made the switch from the Knights in the post season.

The only league meetings between the two clubs came in 2015, with the Knights coming away with 1-0 & 2-0 wins respectively. Although the clubs have been in countless number of friendlies in the past and are very familiar with one another.

Match Facts/Stats:
When: Friday 5th May. 8:30pm
Where: Knights Stadium
Last Meeting: Melbourne Knights 2-0 North Geelong (2015 NPL)
Past 2 Meetings: Melbourne Knights 2, North Geelong

Melbourne Knights 2017 Season:
Goals: 16 (1.45 per game).
Conceded 24 (2.18 per game).

@ Home
5 Games – 1 Wins, 1 Draw 3 Loss.
Goals: 7 (1.40 per game)
Conceded: 12 (2.4 per game)

Knights Goal scorers: Kamsoba 5, Hicks 5, Cahill 4, Dixon 1, Mikulic 1.

North Geelong 2017 Season
Goals: 10 (0.90 per game).
Conceded 27 (2.45 per game).

@ Away
5 Games – 0 Wins, 2 Draws, 3 Loss
Goals: 4 (0.80 per game)
Conceded: 15 (3.00 per game)

North Geelong Goalscorers: Doig 3, Eze 2, Thorne 2, Pugh 1, Julardzija 1, Grgic 1.

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