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The Countdown is on to the Hyundai A-League Finals Series!

It’s February, which means there’s only two months to go before the Hyundai A-League finals series begins!

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It’s February, which means there’s only two months to go before the Hyundai A-League finals series begins! With that in mind, let’s take a look at how the 10 Hyundai A-League clubs are situated heading into the business end of the season.

And once you’re up to speed with how each club is shaping up, scroll to the bottom for your chance to win a brand-new Hyundai Elantra SR Turbo, worth over $32,000!

10th: Adelaide United

Points: 11 (10 points out of the top six)

Last year’s champions are renowned for their slow starts to the season, but it’s fair to say this has been a little too slow. Sitting at the bottom of the ladder, their recruitment has come under scrutiny after failing to make up for the losses of big names like Craig Goodwin, Stefan Mauk, Bruce Kamau and Bruce Djite.

Finals outlook: Still a mathematical chance, but you know what they say about mathematical chances in sport…

9th: Central Coast Mariners

Points: 16 (5 points out of the top six),

The club’s financial handicap means they lack the big names of most of their league counterparts, but Paul Okon is a good coach and has brought discipline to the young squad. Conceding an average of two goals per match, their defence is the most pressing concern.

Finals outlook: Still slim, but two wins on the trot have lifted them from the bottom of the ladder and should boost their confidence.

8th: Wellington Phoenix

Points: 19 (2 points out of the top six)

Had an abysmal start to the season, but with a couple of recent wins – including a strong 3-0 win against the Victory – they’ve crept back into finals contention. Roy Krishna and Kostas Barbarouses have been solid up front, and Shane Smeltz’s return from Malaysia is timely.

Finals outlook: The return of Smeltz, a proven performer, could be the impetus they need to make a push for a finals berth.

7th: Newcastle Jets

Points: 20 (1 point out of the top six)

Started the season strong and then faded quickly, plummeting down the ladder. Livewire winger Andrew Nabbout has been a bright spot, but their overall lack of firepower has been telling. Still, this is a side that knows how to scrap, as exhibited in their last-minute 3-2 victory in Brisbane in January.

Finals outlook: Low on class but high on fighting spirit, the Jets will need to show all the scrap they can muster to break away from the mid-table log jam.

6th: Western Sydney Wanderers

Points: 21 (1 point inside the top six)

Their midfield, including Argentine midfield signing Nicolas Martinez and Spanish captain Dimas Delgado, are playing as well as anyone, but their defence has been average and their lack of firepower up front has been telling – as evidenced by a massive nine draws from 18 games.

Finals outlook: They have the midfield, but will need to find a regular goal scorer if they’re to turn those draws into wins and challenge the league’s big dogs.

aAndrew Nabbout

5th: Perth Glory

Points: 24 (4 points inside the top six; 2 points off a home semi)

A fantastic-looking squad on paper has struggled to translate that to on-field performance. Their internationals, particularly Socceroo Rhys Williams, haven’t lived up to expectations. Still, with mid-table points tough to come by this season, they still find themselves in the top half of the ladder.

Finals outlook: They’re not in a bad position, and they have the names on paper to do big things. It wouldn’t be the first time they’ve mustered a late-season surge.

4th: Melbourne City

Points: 26 (2 points clear of fifth; 9 points off second)

After an outstanding start to the season, they went five games winless, before coach John van ’t Schip resigned to return to the Netherlands for family reasons. Bruno Fornaroli has netted 12 goals, and Tim Cahill (9 goals) has been everything you’d expect of a Socceroos legend. Already have some silverware to their name after winning the FFA Cup.

Finals outlook: With a squad heavy on talent, a title is still a very real possibility – provided they can overcome the departure of van t’ Schip.

3rd: Brisbane Roar

Points: 28 (4 points clear of fifth; 7 points off second)

Coach John Aloisi has done well to weather a series of off-field storms and has steadied the ship when it all could have gone very wrong. Once the attacking darlings of the A-League, the Roar have flown under the radar this season, but have shown a great deal of mental resilience.

Finals outlook: With the off-field dramas behind them, the Roar are in the perfect position for a late-season charge. In Jamie Maclaren, they have the front man they need.

2nd: Melbourne Victory

Points: 35 (7 points clear of third)

They started slowly, but the early-season favourites are gathering momentum. Not only is Besart Berisha leading the season’s goal-scoring ranks, but he also this season became the A-League’s highest scorer of all-time. Marco Rojas has shown more than the odd glimpse of magic, and Carl Valeri is leading the midfield well.

Finals outlook: They’ll need to seriously slip up if they’re to lose a top-two spot at this stage, and their squad depth is fantastic. Genuine contenders.

1st: Sydney FC

Points: 44 (9 points clear of second)

They announced themselves as the team to beat in the very first round of the season, when they disposed of cross-town rivals the Wanderers 4-0 – and, indeed, no team has been able to touch them since. Scoring at will and conceding a miserly eight goals so far, it has been a start to the season rivalled only by the Melbourne Victory in 2006-07.

Finals outlook: Playing an attractive brand of football with consummate ease and confidence. There’s no doubt they’re the team to beat.

Sydney FC

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What is the Hyundai Fan Wall?

As a proud fan of football we want to give all fans some much-deserved credit. As the sponsor of the Hyundai A-League there are lots of places we can display our logo. Instead, however, we want to share the limelight with our fellow fans. 

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Eligibility conditions apply to the Hyundai Fan Wall promotion. The promotion commenced at 10.00am (AEST) on 29/09/16 and closes at 11.59pm (AEST) on 26/04/2017. The winner will be notified by phone and email within 2 days of draw date. Prize value of $32,890. Authorised under NSW Permit No. LTPS/16/07499, ACT Permit No. TP16/01858 & SA Licence No. T16/1692. Refer to full terms and conditions at www.hyundaifanwall.com.au