Reaching the all-important sixth place is still a distant dream for the Wellington Phoenix.

Four points adrift with two games to play is a lot of ground to make up.

That being said, missing out on the finals is not yet a forgone conclusion, so without further ado, here are four reasons a hopeful Phoenix side can still make the finals

1. Form

Two rip-roaring efforts from the Phoenix have seen them brush aside both the Newcastle Jets and Melbourne Victory with an aggregate score of 8-0. The displays have shown the threatening attacking football that the side has teased at on multiple occasions this season, whilst also patching inconsistencies that once appeared to be ever present. Goals have stopped leaking, chances are being taken and the team has produced back to back 90 minute performances.

2. Big players stepping up

The Nix this season have been plagued by inconsistency. Key signings struggled to make their mark early on and too often were games hinging on whether or not Roy Krishna showed up. That is no longer the case however as the Nix now have the likes of Kosta Barbarouses, Gui Finkler, Roly Bonevacia and Alex Rodriguez to look to for inspirational displays. Many saw the Nix as a dark horse going into the season, only now have the started to perform as a team.

3. Fast starts

The start of the season saw the Phoenix pressing high from the off. Furious high intensity football aimed at disrupting the opposition and claiming early goals. It wasn’t successful at the time as chances went begging and the back four were left exposed all too often. In recent matches the Nix have adopted a similar style, though have added a clinical edge that has seen them claim early leads. Once taking the lead the Nix have looked a different prospect and will look to do the same against Sydney FC and Brisbane Roar in the coming weeks.

4. Complacency

When Melbourne Victory stepped onto the pitch on Sunday they had clear daylight between themselves and third, and were without hope of catching table toppers Sydney. With little to play for they were stunned by the Nix’s high intensity football and struggled throughout to find the motivation to fight back from their early deficit. With first place secured, Sydney FC have little to fight for heading into this week’s match and no one could blame them for turning in a similarly disappointing performance. It is a tough ask for the Phoenix, a very tough ask. But right now it’s not impossible

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