Analysis: Fornaroli versus Berisha

Melbourne Victory’s marquee striker Besart Berisha could become the Hyundai A-League’s all-time leading goalscorer in Saturday’s Melbourne Derby, but City’s Bruno Fornaroli may very well smash that record in the future.

Berisha’s hat-trick against Western Sydney Wanderers took the Albanian centre-forward to 89 goals in the Hyundai A-League, one behind the competition’s greatest marksman Archie Thompson.

If Berisha draws level with Thompson on Saturday night at AAMI Park against Melbourne City, he will have reached 90 goals in 74 fewer games than his former Victory team-mate.

But at the rate City captain Fornaroli is scoring, the Uruguayan could reach the 90-goal mark in just four more seasons – an entire A-League campaign faster than Berisha.

Fornaroli, who sits one goal behind Berisha this season, has struck 32 times in 39 A-League matches at a ratio of 0.821 goals per game.

If Fornaroli maintains that ratio, he would reach 90 goals midway through the 2020/21 Season, assuming City play no finals between now and then, which is unlikely.

Assuming Berisha scores in Round 11, the 31-year-old will have reached 90 goals at a ratio of 0.643 goals per game – much faster than Thompson (0.421).

The big question is whether City will be able to hold onto Fornaroli for that long.

The 29-year-old would be 33 by the time the 2020/21 Season begins, while his form in Australia over the past 18 months has almost certainly attracted interest from abroad.

While Fornaroli is easily the most dangerous striker the A-League has seen in terms of goals per game, Berisha is more likely to finish his career as the competition’s all-time leading goalscorer because he came to Australia at a much younger age.

When Berisha first joined Brisbane Roar he was just 26, two years younger than Fornaroli when he began his A-League career.

Regardless of which striker ends their career with more Hyundai A-League goals, Saturday night’s Melbourne derby will be a fantastic opportunity to see two of the most lethal marksman we’ve seen on these shores go head-to-head.