Friday, 16 July 2010 9:04 AM
By John Kyrou
South Melbourne FC faces another derby match on Sunday afternoon when the side meets the Melbourne Knights at John Cain Memorial Park.
South has to win in order to give itself any hope of making the finals in 2010 and at the same time basically confirm safety from relegation. The Knights seriously need the three points to ease relegation fears and steer away from the bottom two sides Sunshine George Cross and Altona Magic.
South go into the game with many problems, with the least of those being the unfortunate 2-0 loss away to Heidelberg last Sunday. The side has been dealt with several injuries, with casualties from Olympic Village being Kyle Joryeff (3 weeks) and Rhodri Payne (2 weeks), plus Fernando De Moraes is unlikely to not return for another fortnight due to a back injury. In yet another blow, Carl Recchia will miss the Knights clash having accumulated five yellow cards which rules him out of Sunday’s match. These losses do however provide an opportunity for Marinos Gasparis, Sebastian Petrovic, Eddie Cetkin and Jason Ricciuti to press for a starting berth.
The Melbourne Knights have also had an inconsistent season and currently sit one point from the relegation zone. Despite their lowly position on the League standings, the Knights have at times been impressive in 2010 and will no doubt provide very tough opposition for South. One player South must watch out for is Danny Tiatto, with the former Socceroo and Melbourne Knights National League championship player returning to his former club this season after a decade in Europe. Tiatto has already stamped his mark in the South-Knights derby, having been sent off in the classic 1994/95 NSL Preliminary Final that the Knights won 3-2. No doubt the experienced veteran will be looking to cause a similar scoreline on Sunday.
Earlier this year, a superb individual goal from Joe Keenan gave South a 0-1 win at Somers Street. In the corresponding fixture in 2009, second half goals from Vaughan Coveny and De Moraes gave South a 2-1 win over the Knights at Lakeside Stadium.
The match kicks off at 3pm on Sunday at John Cain Memorial Park.