How important is a good start in the Hyundai A-League? Is a team’s performance in the first six games crucial to winning the Premier’s Plate?
We crunch the Opta Stats to find out more.
CHARGING FROM DAY ONE
Sydney FC did something last season that no Premiership winner has done since 2006/07 – they won their first six regular season matches.
The Sky Blues dominant start put them on the road to a record points total and saw them crowned premiers well before the end of the campaign.
Ten years earlier, Ernie Merrick’s Melbourne Victory also won their first half-dozen games on their way to an eventual 12-point buffer at the end of the pre-finals segment of the season.
OUTHOUSE TO PENTHOUSE
The most famous example of a slow-starting champion was Adelaide United in 2015/16.
The Reds had a meagre two points after six games and were dead last.
In fact, they didn’t pick up their first win until round nine.
From there though, they were unstoppable, embarking on a 14-game unbeaten streak to go from last to first in astonishing fashion.
BEHIND THE EIGHT-BALL
It took Western Sydney time to get going as a Hyundai A-League club.
They didn’t score at all until round four of 2012/13 and six games into their debut campaign the newly formed side had just seven points and four goals.
But they quickly found their feet, rocketing up the table to claim the Premier’s Plate, winning 16 of their next 21 matches.
BUT SOLID STARTS OFTEN PAY DIVIDENDS
Eight of the twelve former Premiers have started their seasons well, reaching at least a double-figure tally of points after six games.
After Sydney FC last year and Victory in 2006/07, the next best were Adelaide United in the Hyundai A-League’s inaugural season.
The Reds were unbeaten through their first six matches, collecting 14 points on their way to a 7-point winning margin after 21 games.
Victory were also unbeaten through six games in 2014/15 but their 12 points was bettered by the 2007/08 Mariners who won four and drew one of their first six that season.