TODAY |

Victory at Eden Park crucial to Wellington Phoenix playoff hopes

Wellington Phoenix coach Ufuk Talay believes victories in his side's last two A-league games will earn them a finals spot, ahead of a crucial clash with Perth Glory at Eden Park this weekend.

Following Wednesday's 2-1 away win over Western Sydney, Wellington are two points behind fifth and sixth-placed Central Coast and Macarthur, who play their game in hand against each other at Campbelltown Stadium on Thursday.

Forced to play in Australia for most of the season due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Phoenix drew in excess of 24,000 for their first match of the campaign in Wellington last weekend and are hopeful of an even bigger crowd for Sunday's home clash with Perth Glory in Auckland.

"Last season, we played up in Eden Park and we didn't lose so hopefully that continues on the weekend," Talay said.

"Whatever happens with the result tomorrow, we're in control of our own destiny.

"We've got two important games that we need to win and I believe that if we do win the next two games we should be in the top-six, so there's something to play for."

Phoenix have enjoyed a remarkable late-season resurgence, keeping themselves in finals contention with a nine-game unbeaten run.

"I think having a bit of consistency within the squad has helped us," Talay said.

"We've had a lot of very niggly injuries at the start of the season where we weren't able to be consistent with our starting XI.

"Consistency brings results and also wining brings confidence as well."

He expects their talismanic Mexican import Ulises Davila to return from injury and play a few minutes on the weekend.

The only negative out of Wednesday's game was an injury to their Olyroos playmaker Reno Piscopo.

X-rays will determine the extent of an injury to either his shoulder or collarbone, with Talay hopeful Piscopo will be available for Phoenix this weekend and fit to press his Olympic selection claims.