Thursday, December 30, 2010

Games to be played, Brisbane, CCM & Gold Coast

Gold Coast's last 2 games are Central Coast (at Skilled park) and then Brisbane (at Suncorp). these games could determine the season for all 3 teams.

Brisbane v:
central Coast
Melb Heart
NQ Fury
Gold Coast

Central Coast v:
Melb Vict
W Phoenix
Melb Heart
Gold Coast

Gold Coast v:
NQ Fury
Melb Heart
Melb Vict
Central Coast

Brisbane v Central Coast (& maybe Gold Coast) for title - this weeks adjusted ladder

Ladder adjusted to equalise teams'games played to 23 - by assuming that the games teams have played less than 23 are won.

Adjst Actual
Points Games
Brisbane 48 - 23
CCM 45 - 20
Gold Coast 43 - 20
Adelaide 40 - 23
Melb Vict 35 - 21
Newcastle 34 - 20
Phoenix 29 - 22
Melb Ht 27 - 23
Perth 23 - 20
NQ Fury 22 - 22
Sydney 21 - 22

Saturday, December 25, 2010

One sleep: most important game in Roar history.. the derby.. the Title?

If you just go to one game.. take your rain gear.. and beer... 6pm Suncorp .. tomorrow Sunday

Could be this is the match that Brisbane demonstrates its dominance of the league...

Passionate Journalism

Yesterday the Courier Mail published one of its best A-League stories. It was written by Marco Monteverde. He was centre stage to his own story. That brought realism and his passion.

It provided insight into the behind the scenes around the Courier Mail stories at the time of Frank Farina's dismissal. But it also presented, extremely well, an argument that Marco has developed a number of times, that unless there is some conflict, there is no story. It echoes his writing ahead of the Adelaide game in which he claims to have baited the Roar about Sergio Van Dijk, and no one responded, perhaps leaving readers disinterested.

Marco has something here. Being a team rivaling the Broncos and the Lions will require fans to be corralled behind a cause. Dispassionate fans will do something else, not bother. The trouble is that the events of last year, combined to simply turn fans off. The whole package of events, quality of football, journalism, the fans own reaction, the press, combined to lead to a string of individual decisions not to follow the Roar anymore. I maintain that the Roar has had more fans than any other team, including Victory. Gets them, loses them.

Winning back a customer you have had can be easier than winning a new customer (seven times?). But winning back ALeague fans and, in particular, Roar fans will be hard.

Marco thinks spice is the answer. And he may be right. But a range of other, expensive things are also needed. Ange, a very accomplished journalist, who more than matches it on the ABC Offsiders with Australia's best sports journalists, believes the football, attitude and behaviour comes first. That has truth too. But does the Roar, and the ALeague more generally, have that time?

Frank Farina also published one of his best articles yesterday. I think it is time Frank was given another coaching job. And Sydney FC needs him and his own ability to turn a failing team. Frank was amazing at getting something from an under-funding Roar squad in season 2. This Sydney team, perhaps not yet under funded (see their club's comments about cutting player pay), has some hallmarks of the Roar in season 2.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Adelaide, please explain...

Buying Uruguayan striker Francisco Usucar and Suriname-born Dutchman Andwele Slory (on a 10 week guest arrangement), could be a great deal for the A-League. But not if it has been financed by Adelaide dumping its W-League team (also announced this week). I hope this is not a cynical move by Adelaide's new owners to ensure that they with the A-League.

BTW, it seems Slory was kicked out of Feyenoord for fighting with team mates at training and arguing with them during games.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Roar away games - 3 - Adelaide, CCM NQF

Adelaide - 2 jan
Central Coast - Wed 12 jan
Fury 5 Feb

5 Home games of home and away to go... 2 against Gold Coast

Roar vs Gold Coast United6.15pmSun 26 Dec, 210
Roar vs Perth Glory7.30pmFri 7 Jan, 2011
Roar vs Wellington Phoenix6pmSun 16 Jan, 2011
Roar vs Melbourne Heart7.30pmFri 28 Jan, 2011
Roar vs Gold Coast United8pmSat 12 Feb, 2011

Monday, December 13, 2010


It is sad that the Roar don't give fans the opportunity to say goodbye to players. Heart allowed John Aloisi to say goodbye to is Adelaide home town and it worked a treat for them.

I met Reinaldo at his first public training session for the Roar. Miron introduced me and my son to him. He was very friendly but spoke no English. He had just played a training game and scored the only game. I exchanged a joke with Michael Baird about Reinaldo just standing there waiting. It wasn't until Frank Farina till we saw the best of Reinaldo. I did my bit to get Frank to return him to the squad. When Frank did, Reinaldo started to show his capability. The half pitch run with the ball against Sydney in a semi final was the highlight - I don't remember him rying another move like it.

Reinaldo had strength and could hold the ball up - he worked out hard in the off season. And he did score some cracker goals - many away and not see my many home fans. He missed a lot too.

Solorzano is a different type of player. I hope we get a similar replacement. Perhaps it is dave Williams.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Ladder adjusted for 21 games...

Brisbane 44
Adelaide 43
Gold Coast 42
CCM 39
Jets 34 (currently 6th)
Victory 29
Phoenix 25
Sydney 24 (currently 9th)
Fury 24 (Currently 11th)
Heart 21
Glory 20

Sydney 0 v Brisbane 1 - close out practice

One moment of brilliance between Mitch, Nico (Solorzano) flicking on for Kosta in the 43 and Sydney were finished off.

Sydney were revitalised in the second half with the introduction of Brosque's long ball running game.

But Ange's game plan was learn the lesson from Victory - show we can grind and hold out.

Mitch Nichols was everywhere in defence and attack - man-of-the-match.

A much quieter game for Broich.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The new model

Foxsports FC had a special on the future of the A-League. It was timed to be one day ahead of the first major post World Cup FFA board meeting. In a nutshell, they believe the answer is 'Frank Lowy to keep it going out of his own pocket'. Sorry can't see that.

More likely I think is to look for a way to reduce team costs. I think stadiums have to be first on the list. If Fox wants Wednesday games, it should pay for them. They are a crowd disaster. This should be facilitated by moving Wednesday games to cheaper fields where the only consideration is quality filming. At these games, walk-ups would watch free.

Next, we must have a home-away season. This is basic to encourage fans. Without this, the A-League is a made for TV sport and will decline. So every 2nd Saturday you will see your team at this venue and time. Basic - must be done.

We must get free-to-air coverage of at least one game a week. Kids must have a way to find out who these people are.

Who are they? The relationships with the local papers must be fixed. It is clear the papers, with direct investments in NRL and indirect investment in AFL, are ignoring the sport. The business analysts at FFA must find a way to solve this problem.

Adelaide 2 v NQ Fury 0

This was a difficult match to stick with. I couldn't. Fury have already signalled that they have benched players for lack of motivation. And now they may have reached a terminal limit.

Perhaps it is restating the strategic case for the Fury?

1. Northern Australia is ignored by the major codes.

2. While Australia will never host a world cup, we will host the 2015 Asia Cup. More importantly, we qualify for the World Cup via Asia. If we do not have a a quality group of players who can cope with Asian heat and an area we can put on events that give us a geographic advantage, we will stop qualifying for the World Cup. A 1990s style performance by the Socceroos would surely be the end of growth prospects for the A-League.

It is very sad that the FFA seem to be able to muster so little strategic competitive advantage. And that they have so little understanding of strategic marketing and its importance to the future of soccer in Australia. I know that Westfield do massive market research analysis before commissioning new stores in new locations - they work out how they can be sustainable. Pity FFA have not done this basic work for the Fury.

Imagine if the $5m to $7m net loss over 2 years from the Fury had been spent on working out how a team could make money with crowds of 3,500 to 8,000 (as opposed to starting with a breakeven of 12,000).

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Brisbane clear at top - by 1 point

Victory 3 v Brisbane 3 (3 suspect goals and one punch - anyone remember what happened when Brisbane punched Kruse?)
CCM 4 v Sydney 0 (coach about to go? or just a guest player signing? - something about to happen as FFA moves to sure-up A-League but the Sydney market needs more than a winning team - but what does the club and FFA have a way to find out?)
NQ Fury 0 v Newcastle 2 (loyal Fury fans deserve more and Socceroos need to heat practice for Qatar in jan 2011 Cup)
Wellington 2 v Adelaide 1 (Dodd send off was unfair, but Adelaide outplayed - 14,000 in Christchurch)
Gold Coast 3 v Heart 0 (still weird watching a GC home game - no fans to speak of)

Nominally adjusted table:
Brisbane 20 games 41 points
Adelaide best case 40
Gold Coast best case 39
CCM best case 38
Newcastle best case 31
Victory best case 26
Wellington best case 25
Heart best case 24
Sydney best case 24
NQ Fury best case 24
Perth best case 19

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Welcome to life on the plastic beach

FIFA has given us a lesson in international politics.

As shocking as the kangaroo cartoon was for the serious world of international sport, it may have some legs for the local market. FFA must now focus on the sustainability of the local league. This means maximising viewers ahead of TV rights deals - in competition with rugby league and AFL.

FFA must re-address the family market it targeted in season one and then ignored. Redo the kangaroo and get into schools and shopping centres. Otherwise we will have been canon fodder in a massive auction.

Some questions remain. Why did Korea and Japan submit bids? They cannot really have imagined that they would have been given another shot. Perhaps they were merely ad campaigns for their corporates. A shame given how badly they burned Australia.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

CCM 1 v Brisbane 5 - Go-cart Mozart (Broich) - Roar now has record for most games undefeated

Book your Boxing day seat, Brisbane's next home game on 26 December against Gold Coast.

In the first half Central Coast had few answers to the Roar. Run up the right or left, cut back into the middle or top of the box. And bang 0-3 and it could have been 5.

The second half opened with perhaps the most obvious ref-linesman mistake in A-League history. You have to be offside if you stand behind the play, behind the defenders and right in front of the keeper and ball goes near your legs. Incredible.

Go-cart Mozart should have had one or 2 penalties. But the ref didn't want to take a risk when the game was so one sided.

Solorzano's 2 goals gives him 7 in his last 6 games and equal with Paul Ifil for golden boot (Ifil has some games in hand). Reinaldo came on and wanted goals - pity we haven't seen more of this. He got won and forced Wilkinson into an own goal.

Brisbane can thrash the top teams, but not Fury and Newcastle?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Table games, Adelaide's win against Gold Coast sets up Brisbane as outright leader

North Queensland sit last on the table. Disheartening for their fans. But they are 4 games behind Perth who they play on Sunday. But they are only 4 points behind Perth. With so few teams having played the same number of games it is very hard to see who is really where on the table. Again disheartening for some fans.

Games played (Position on table now)
Brisbane 18 (1)
Perth 18 (9)
Adelaide 17 (2)
Heart 17 (5)
Victory 16 (6)
Phoenix 16 (7)
Gold Coast 15 (3)
Mariners 15 (4)
Newcastle 15 (8)
Sydney 15 (10)
Fury 14 (11)

The way I have tried to make sense of this for myself is to assume that individual teams will win all the games they need to play to catch up their games played to the team that has played the most games. For example, Adelaide have played one less game than Brisbane and if they won that they would be on equal points with Brisbane (behind on goal difference).

Before this week's mid week games, Gold Coast and Central Coast Mariners could have passed Brisbane by winning all their catch up games. However, their respective loss and draw now means the best they can do in getting to 18 games is Gold Coast 36 (one point behind Brisbane) and Mariners 35 (2 behind).

Therefore, you can say Brisbane is now in the lead and will hold that position at least until after next weeks fixtures. And that for the next 3 games it is Brisbane and Adelaide fighting it out for top spot. After that, perhaps Gold Coast and Mariners can get in front. But not if Brisbane beats or draws with Mariners on Sunday.

Need a coffee?

The other thing to say is that the sting waiting for Perth could be towards the end of the season unless a winning streak emerges. As Sydney and Fury catch up in games they have chances to put together wins that will leave Perth way behind.

The variance in games played is also hiding just how far Brisbane, Adelaide, Gold Coast and Central Coast are ahead of Heart, Victory and Phoenix. The best case for these teams is still 13 points behind Brisbane. With only 12 more games after that, it is starting to get too late for these teams to think about 1st spot. Still possible. But unlikely.

The other point I would make about Brisbane's 18 games is that their next home game is on the very busy 26 December. It is against arch rival Gold Coast and you would expect a bumper crowd. I have had a number of people ask me when the next home game is and say they want to take their mates. U2 and FFA (not allowing a Ballymore game) pushed the Roar into this long break of home games. Let's hope Boxing Day gets the game it deserves. Under the right circumstances, a 20,000 to 30,000 crowd is possible. Game of the season? Let's hope Brisbane have their Asian spot before 12 February when Gold Coast return for the last match home/away match.

Brisbane head for Asia...

A decade into the Asian century, Australia's northern most state capital is ready to be set alight by Asian football. And fingers crossed, this time next year we could be in the middle of it...

Adelaide 2 v Gold Coast 1 - pressure on to keep winning

Adelaide outplayed Gold Coast, with a rock solid defence that was rarely tested.

Miron paid Brisbane (Brisbane thrashed Adelaide with 10 men) a compliment:

'Gold Coast United coach Miron Bleiberg said his side ``deserved to lose''. "We are not that good that we can beat Adelaide with 10 men,'' he said. "It was one of those games where if things don't go for you, it doesn't go for you.'' Courier Mail

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Broich and Solorzano brilliant

Thomas Broich was back to best after recovering from his German 're-fresh'.

And Solorzano was a step above what we have seen from him before.

Great night from the Roar players as they totally dominated Glory.

5-0 would have been a more accurate score for this game.

I wonder what Glory will look like by season's end? Who will be their coach?

Brisbane 3 v Perth 2 - Ferguson there's no cure there's no answer

Glory's coach left the field arguing with the Ref. And yet the inexperienced ref had already done Glory many favours with soft decision making:

- Broich pulled down from behind (for the second game in a row) - this time he was on goal and it was the last man
- Broich fouled in the box - play on
- Ball hits Devere's shoulder - penalty
- Nichols has his leg kicked out from under him in front of an open goal

FFA is trying to give amateur refs experience - but we are mid season.

Or maybe there is a bit of trying to stop Glory totally collapsing.

Glory's back line was out-classed and they deservedly went down to 9 men. But it probably should have been 8 or 7. Josh Mitchell was up to the tricks he learnt in Romania.

On paper they have a good team. But the rely on biff and long balls. Last year's team looked better with a lower quality team.

Poor A-League fans - Robbie Fowler only on for 25 minutes and - apart from the penalty, hardly gets a touch.

So FFA, does Glory get a fine for 5 cards and get a please explain for their behaviour? Or did that only apply to Brisbane?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Brisbane v Robbie Fowler - this Wednesday 8pm Suncorp

Shame. This game is outside the Suncorp contract because the venue was unavailable for its original date. It was an opportunity to find a good pitch and offer a free event. People of Brisbane, come and meet and watch Robbie Fowler. And the - why not come to see us at Suncorp?

Instead, he'll be here and gone and hardly noticed.

Even the school holiday opportunity has been missed by just one week.

Sydney 2 v Perth 0, CCM 2 v Gold Coast 3

Gold Coast are emerging as a real chance for the title.

Is it irony that two teams so close geographically would have so different an impact if either won the title.

A home grand final is unlikely for GC, as it was for newcastle and CCM.

GC in Asia would be a none event in Australia, but commercially well used by Clive Palmer.

Even FFA could see the commercial opportunity in the Roar having a home Grand Final. And Asia could bring Brisbane alight.

Brisbane 1 v NQ 1 - lead in their boots

In Europe they have squads of 60. They can play 3 games week after week.

Brisbane have players on long term injury and players taking long international flights intra-week.

Once again Brisbane stop or escape the great moves but concede the soft goals. the Williams / Edds goal on 9 minutes was soft as you like.

Fury played Jason Spagnuolo centre forward, with Payne on the bench. They were here to defend and they did it very well.

I haven't heard of Western Australian referee Josh Mihevc before. I understand he refs youth league matches. He and his assistants, missed 2 penalties for the Roar and adjudged Solorzano offside when he was onside at a key moment. FFA seem to be giving Fury the inexperienced refs and often they have been on the wrong side of poor decisions.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Brisbane v NQ - you have to keep winning

3 draws is the same as 1 win and 2 losses. So Adelaide are back on Brisbane's heels. So Brisbane have to keep winning.

Fixtures Confused? I certainly elephant

So on this FFA page it says the Roar are playing tonight against the Fury and then Sunday 28 November against Central Coast. - Round 15

On this page it also says Central Coast are playing Newcastle on Wednesday 24 November. Round 16

On this page it says the Roar are playing Perth on Wednesday 24 November. And the Roar play Victory on 3 December. Round 17

And yet the Roar have already played 16 games. Do the rounds mean anything? Does the position on the ladder mean anything?

Would designed this? Do they think about how it it read?

I read something that made me think the Roar were playing Central Coast at Gosford this Wednesday. But I must have been wrong or the schedule changed or something.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Having World Cup Qualifiers on free-to-air...

would be good .... because the A-League players would get local exposure.

would be bad .... because FFA funding could be reduced.

This harks back to an early Rudd Labour election promise.

Newcastle 1 v Brisbane 1

This was a tough game. The Roar would be happy with 1 point, even though it is another draw against a team in the lower reaches of the table.

Newcastle will and are complaining about the 80 minute equaliser. But it was clearly onside. Newcastle had a few gos at copying the Roar's play book. Go wide, push the ball through a hole and have someone run onto it - splitting the defence and crossing or shooting. So it was for the Roar goal, Nichols and Barbarouses going their job and Solorzano his - JC S's job is being there to tap in.

The only real disappointment from this game was the standoff referring which left Nichols with badly bruised legs and Newcastle tackles came pounding in. Roar still have to have legs for another 2 games in 7 days before a week off. So much for programming to support Socceroo duty!

The crowd was a fantastic 8,000 - about the same as the Saturday before.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Fowler gets hat trick for Glory over Victory

Heart 1 v Brisbane 2 - Revolution no 9

Brisbane were done in the first half. Too many players were being carried - Stefanuto, Broich (no surprise he looked and played like he was yet lagged) and Solorzano. The Heart's goal was all Stefanuto not will to take the risk that he wouldn't keep up on the left.

Then at half time, Franjic comes on for Stef and it was all Roar - 86% possession. And shot after shot. Their basic game of punching balls through the defence for wide players to run onto. Mitch Nichols came on in the 65th for Paartalu, and the possession became domination. Within a minute Mitch had set-up Barbarouses, the culmination of a one-touch festival, Barbarouses had missed about 5 of these - this time it squeeked into the left post.

More domination. Solorzano comes alive. Heart seem to be constantly fouling to stay in the game. One too many tackles from behind, this time on Solorzano with the goal virtually open. Penalty (72 minutes) - Franjic has a long wait as Shoj is booked for something (wasting time?) - kicks it into Bolton's feet.

Mitch works more wonder. And Broich starts to get into the game for the first time. Roar have 10 shots on goal in the second half. Mitch hits the keeper. Heart scramble down the Roar end, their fans want a penalty, no. Then again in the late 80s, ball in the penalty area for a long time, but eventually shot into the side netting. Roar rebound Broich, Nicols, Franjic shoots hits the post (2nd or 3rd time for the game with Barbarouses) but Solorzano, who was behind the defence for a long time, stands still has the game moves past him, then runs in as the ball hits the post...

Solorano comes off - I thought it should be Broich - Heart pushing hard now, and Roar look tired. Viscounte gets a one-on-one with Bolton, Bolton gets a hand on the shot and Rocky cant take the second chance.

The Roar win. This is how you can win premierships. They missed Reinaldo's power up front. And he'll be back Wednesday night. Roar need to put all the pressure on Central Coast that they can. Not to mention Adelaide.

Sasa scores and wins Asia cup

Safer hands than Jade.

Time to pick him for Socceroos. If we want to win the big boys Asian Cup, of course.

'SOCCEROO Sasa Ognenovski capped off a great week by scoring the opening goal to help Seongnam Ilhwa lift the Asian Champions League title after 3-1 win over Zobahan in the final in Tokyo'

Saturday, November 13, 2010

It's on

Wellington 0 v Central Coast 3 (I think Riki should have either picked more New Zealanders in his squad or left when the foreign teams wanted him as coach. Don't the World Cup demonstrate the locals are good enough - even the local leaguers?)

Newcastle 3 v Adelaide 0

This is either Central Coast making their run, or Brisbane getting a game ahead.

Central Coast have only played 12 games. So if they win their next 3 they would be top by at least 1 point - as at round 15 (whatever round 15 is, as some others will be way beyond that). And Brisbane would be ruing that it could have won all 5 of its draws - particularly the Sydney and Gold Coast games.

But if the Roar can beat Heart and Central Coast don't win its next 3, then Brisbane will be the clear leader. Pity - or maybe it is a plus - that the draw is creating such confusion. Look at Newcastle, if it wins its next 3 games having played only 12 it will be top 6. And what looked like a crisis will have been a none event.

A-League gets 1.4 Pay TV viewers

See Roy Morgan's research here.

The A-League's numbers are from last season. But it shows it is up there with Pay TV penetration - AFL Pay TV = 2.3m, NRL Pay TV = 1.3m.

If and when Australia wins the 2022 World Cup, AFL free-to-air of 6.6m viewers will be under threat.

For $950 you can get A-League viewer demographics. Let's hope the clubs and FFA are accessing this data. I assume they are. It would be good to see more of this data reflected in promotion activities and long term planning.

Perth blames players...

Here in the The Age.

But it is the way they play. They need a new coaching perspective.

Mixing codes..

See this article in the Sydney Morning Herald:

'What shape that future takes is the interesting part. Neither Tinkler nor Gerard are football men, and it seems they want their A-League teams to become part of something bigger. Tinkler wants to buy the Newcastle Knights, while Gerard already bankrolls SANFL club North Adelaide. Both men believe that pooling resources across two codes to create a ''super club'' is the right way to go, and the FFA remains open to the idea.

Before anyone jumps in too quickly, it might be worth remembering that this has happened before, with Carlton, Collingwood Warriors and Parramatta Power. The old NSL wasn't as strong structurally as the A-League, but it's still worth making sure the same mistakes aren't repeated. And that means guaranteeing an equal relationship in any partnership between the codes, not one that automatically relegates football to secondary status.'

Geoff Lord's company was looking for something like this for the Victory. They looked at the Victorian union franchise but the FFA wouldn't let them use the 'Victory' brand.

Maybe allowing more of this would:

1. facilitate better interaction with local fans (summer and winter)
2. encourage an effective antidote to the AFL

Thursday, November 11, 2010

NQ Fury 2 v Melb Heart 3

Referees are influenced by 2 things. Very large crowds and teams that demonstrate superior skill. The Roar have found that to their advantage this year, when in previous year their under budget team bore the brunt of poor decisions.

Fury should have won this game 2-0 or better. But the grace of Heart's front line allowed them to get away with first an offside goal, and then a hand ball controlled goal. From there Fury were chasing the game.

So much for Perth's new broom in their 2-0 loss in Adelaide. Do teams still get fined for 5 yellow cards? There were a couple this week.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Brisbane 4 v Adelaide 0 - now it is cool again to wear orange

In the opening 15 minutes of the second half, Brisbane ripped Adelaide apart. All of a sudden Adelaide's defence looked dodgy and didn't improve until Cornthwaite was replaced.

Broich was the star for the Roar. But the standout, despite Kosta's 2 goals, was Mundy who - particularly in the second half - ran and ran.

Why was Reinaldo sent off? Clearly he was the victim of a last man foul and it should have been an Adelaide defender with the long walk. But that is idiosyncratic Matthew Breeze for you, his refing is capable of any result. Including not giving Adelaide a penalty in the first half. I am assuming Reinaldo got one yellow when he took his shirt off after scoring a great goal and another for back chat? And it took Breeze a few minutes to realise he had already booked him.

We are top of the league. And Adelaide have Central Coast breathing down their neck.

Hear about Melbourne Heart's marketing strategy


Friday, November 05, 2010

Brisbane v Adelaide kickoff 8:15pm Saturday

Fury 0 v CCM 1 - not really a fair game

It was clear that the Fury and their home fans went away from this game unhappy. CCM dominated the first half. But Fury were the better side in the second half. And the CCM goalkeeper had to deliberately trip David Williams on 80 minutes to keep the 3 points for CCM. Amazingly, the ref gave a corner kick. Amazing because no CCM player, including the guilty keeper, touched the ball.

Unfortunately, FFA seem to be throwing inexperienced refs and assistants at Fury.

Also it would be far better to take the heat out of the situation by allowing the very popular Straka and connected MacLaren to speak out. Muzzled, it just looks like FFA are happy to squeeze the life out NQ.

An undeserved 3 points to the Mariners.

It is time for the local press to start supporting Brisbane Roar

Front pages for someone of the character of Brendan Fevola and nothing for the Roar being top.

Come on. Time to get with the program.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Wellington 1 v Brisbane 4: Murdocca rips Wellington apart

So Sydney was the dress rehearsal for Massimo's new role in ghosting forward and shooting. Early in the second half Reinaldo set him up beautifully wafter a long run and an angled back ball from near the goal. That time Murdocca's shot cannoned off the post. Second time Solorzano released him on an unwatched / unmarked run.

Kosta was great. And again rubbed Herbert the Herbert's nose in the fact he doesn't seem to be interested in young New Zealand players. Again it was Reinaldo that held the ball up and set-up the goal on 4 minutes with a cross field pass - left to right before it came back right to centre for Kosta to stoke in.

Wellington countered for most of the rest of the half, equalising on 36 minutes with a great lob from Brown. Before Broich got his revenge on a kicking he was getting from North by using North's arm on route to goal. Like Victory on Adelaide's Leckie, Wellington targeted violence on Broich. But Thomas was outstanding, setting up goals and near goals.

Mitch finished off the night with a ball from Broich that found him unmarked at the top of the right side of the box.

Now Brisbane is top. And Ange looks like a future Socceroos coach. Will Brisbane come out to watch their team against Adelaide on Saturday?

(Note Brisbane needed to win this match as they have now played 3 more games than 3rd placed Central Coast.)

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Brisbane's next game is tomorrow afternoon 4:30pm AEST - away in Wellington

As the season rolls on it is becoming clear that whoever designed the fixture list year did not think about the marketplace. It is a shame. Certainly it has been clear since season 1 that there is no requirement from the fans for teams to play each other 3 times. It was also clear from the first mid-week game, that there is no demand nor commercial driver - possibly even from Fox - for mid week games. Who will watch at 4:30pm tomorrow? School kids? They don't even recognise the players.

It is just disappointing.

Are the FFA and the players really living a dream about re-creating a European scenario of mid week games? Apart from anything else the clubs that do that well have squads of 60 players.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Central Coast 5 v Perth 0

Perth need to try to make the most of Robbie Fowler, somehow.

Is there another way other than getting a new coach? Is it Frank Farina. He does seem to be able to get the most, at short notice, of these types of players.

Brisbane 1 v Sydney 1

How frustrating. Goal scoring is what the game is about. And it is the side of the game that the Roar have struggled with. But this game could have been Roar anything to Sydney's one chance. Sure Sydney pressed a bit in the second half, but they were outclassed.

Oh for an out and out goal scorer - but then what would we loose?

Missed open goals to Murdocca and McKay - wow Murdocca is geting high (on the park).

Will Reinaldo, Nichols and Solorzance all get a go together?

Sydney look a lot safer without Reddy.

Roar's defence can look like glass.

Who will pick up Jordan Farina?

Stuart MacLaren said of Jordan Farina:

“Jordan Farina is another player that David Large and I have known from our time with the QAS and he is a player I have a lot of time for. He is very powerful and very quick and can play a number of positions. He can go past people, score goals and do a defensive job too, and I am excited to have him in our squad."

He has the X factor. May be hard for the Roar to get him. Maybe Sydney or Fury.

Grandmaster Miron and the Furious Roar

The future of Queensland's A-League teams?

However, anyone else think that Miron has been really quiet this year - only real quote was that FFA may have to think about the future of Gold coast next season.

And Fury can not take a trick with FFA. I thought the Bosnich 'mic'ed' idea was a good. At least it would have showed something was happening for the fans. And I also think given that it it appears to have been... well it wasn't their fault they went to Newcastle - 2 plane trips there and back - for no game, Stuart Mac coaching this week at home would have been reasonable - for the fans.

How should the Roar re-build their reputation with Brisbane? It is not just about great football and winning. There is something intangible. A real demonstration that they know about and care about their fans.

And then there is Australia's Sporting Industrial Complex, including the media with its vested interests in NRL and AFL.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Mike Colman gets it mostly right..


Except he left out the role, or lack of it, of the local paper supporting the local team - even when they are the best in the league. Local journo seems to openly support the supporter less Gold Coast, why?

Victory take out Leckie...

First time backfired as Adelaide score from Muscat 'takeout' within 30 seconds.

The second 'takeout' on 20 minutes works a treat as Adelaide management left arguing on the sideline with Leckie off while Kruse scores.

Adelaide have a right back problem.

Muscat gets only his 2nd yellow of the season - wow.

1st half.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Do the FFA survey

They are asking about:

- FFA cup - want it? who and when?
- season length and when (uses jargon - 'window') - too long? too short? after NRL/AFL?
- marquee players - effective? good enough?
- club customer service to fans and reaching out

And a range of other things.

But they don't allow you to click multiple boxes - like I go to matches with my son and my friends - but it only allowed me to say one or the other. And it didn't allow me to say the 'fan-made' ads are good but a shot in the foot because key stadiums will not allow fans to do some of the things that the ads say you can do.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Brisbane 2 v Victory 1 - Aim High (like water needs a flower)

Victory outplayed Brisbane at their game. Pushing high and playing a quick passing game.

The only negative for Melbourne is that their new no 9 has been found out as a diver. if he is not careful, sooner or later he will get a 2 week ban.

Brisbane had very few opportunities and rarely got into position where a shot was on. But the standout for was - Luke Devere 'playmaker'. Early in the second half he ran rings around about 4 Victory players. Then later he cut through the middle and an inch perfect tackle stopped his shot, providing Solorzance the opportunity to slam home.

If Victory had drawn this match or even won it (both outcomes could have been justified by the way they played), it would have been down to Muscat. He was brilliant. It was amazing how he could pull the shirt of a player (usually Reinaldo) or slam into their back in such a way that the ref saw no problem. It is a real skill.

There were about 30 travelling Victory fans who were very vocal at first and then when Kruse equalised out of nowhere (soft goal Roar) early in the second half. However, security and then the police made sure they were very quiet as the game rolled on.

Only about 9,000 tonight. It shows 2 things, how damaged the Roar brand was last year by tipping the club upside down, and how poor the game scheduling is this year. 7:45pm is too late. And the next home game is the 'top of the table' clash with Adelaide. Guess what time - 8:15pm. Rubbish. How are you going to get maximum kids to that? Most will not get home till well after 11pm. And in Adelaide the game will be on between 8:45 and 10:45 and elsewhere 9:15 and 11:15.

This is rubbish viewing time. Get the games back in prime time FFA.

Brisbane v Victory - revenge time?

Expect Victory to push high again.

Have Roar learnt their lessons - the subsequent games indicated that they had.

How will Muscat and Kruse go? Red cards or goals?

Adelaide FFA 3 v Wellington 0

It is wrong that the FFA have pump primed Adelaide's squad to facilitate a sale and then let them run rampent over the private funding in the A-League. I suppose it wasn't their fault that the original deal fell through and then another buyer could not be found.

Still who is going to investigate whether the Van Dijk and Flores deals led to breaches of the salary cap?

Maybe the plan was for Adelaide to do well in 2009-10 Asian Cup, giving the A-League a better profile.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A-League needs a new player contract system

Why should Fury fans be done over by other clubs that can't find players in their own backyards?

Use the US MLS system and have all players contracted centrally - one in all in.

And no trading of players unless both clubs and FFA agree.

Cernak process makes it look like FFA is writing off Fury. Poor decision making again.

Compare this to the way Adelaide has been pump-primed in a desperate attempt to find a buyer. Meanwhile the other owners suffer the consequence of an artificially strong Adelaide.

Next game - home v Victory 7:45 kick off

Brisbane 2 v Central Coast 0 - Come on let's go!

Watch out Melbourne Victory, you beat us 3-0. We want that back. We are after Adelaide. How could they afford van Dijk?

Ange has proved his point. Now the Brisbane press need to get behind the team.

ABC 612 did this morning.

A team this good needs local support.

Come on let's go.

What about the cleverness of Broich? The screamer from Ivan Franjic?

But mid week your competing against Paul Weller - well well well, things are really hotting up now.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Brisbane 1 v Newcastle 1

This is always a tough match up. And for this season, it exposed Brisbane's weakness - just like in the Victory match - they find it difficult when teams match their passing style and press high. Newcastle did this in the first part of the first half and forced an own goal.

Newcastle wanted a point - so they defended for the rest of the game. If they had kept pressing there may have been an upset.

Having said that, Brisbane did play brilliantly in the middle third and most of the final third with the exception of actually scoring.

Fans throughout the Roar's history will be familiar with the stats from the game of 72% possession and 22 shots to 4 and then not winning. At least in this game they drew. But there was something different. One more piece of magic and this was going to be 4-1.

Pity about Wednesday games. And pity it will be Central Coast. You want teams like this to fully recover and go again.

Plus the A-League needs teams like this watched in prime time, not hidden on a Wednesday.

Victory 3 v Sydney 0 - Will Sydney look to Frank Farina?

The inability to build a team that can win games, irrespective of winning last year, may now lead to a coaching change at Sydney FC. Sometimes changing the coach just gives that catalyst.

Vítězslav Lavička has a fear of heights and committed to climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge if Sydney beat Melbourne for its first win of the season. This psychology was all wrong. He should have committed to climbing the bridge if they lost. That would have got his motivation and blood pressure going... Maybe he really didn't want to make that climb?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Glory Chase Fred

See story in 442 Australia online.

I think Fred should only play in Australia for the Victory. There are plenty of foreign players out there Perth should go find one.

Australian players team hoping is one thing. Foreign players team hoping is unacceptable to fans. Stamp it out FFA.

Fred's Wellington stint showed how poor value his move back to the A-League was.

Glory - give your fans their own heroes.

To-date, he has proved his case...

From today's Courier Mail:

"My point back then was don't judge my decisions on that time and place - the judgment in those decisions would come further down the track," Postecoglou said. "I wanted players who wanted to win things and wanted to progress their careers, not just a player who was looking for another payday or an increase in their salary as a motivation to move."

Friday, October 15, 2010

NQ Fury 2 v Perth Glory 1

Fury were by far the better team. And Straka is by far the better coach.

If Perth were getting rid of Mitchell, why didn't they go the whole way and exit Ferguson too? Clearly Glory need new thinking, the A-League has moved way on from their kick the ball, kick the opponent style. Why is Jacob Burns see as Socceroo potential?

The linesman didn't know what he was doing with offside. A fairer score, just on correct offside calls would have been 4-0 to Fury.

And if Straka is going to be banned for touching a ref, why wouldn't Michael Baird be? Baird can be seen making the same level of contact on the ref when he got his yellow card.

Fury is a team we need in the A-League. It would be very unfair if Glory got to buy Hughes and others from Fury cheap to try and patch up what is a poor history of bad coaching for Perth.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Reducing foreign players from 5 to 4 next season...

Late start - obvious.

FFA Cup with State Leagues - great move.

Late finish and maintaining 3 match-ups - very poor move.

Reducing foreign players from 5 to 4 - not sure about this one. Could signal reduction in teams to 10 and therefore increased local players. If 11 or 12 teams go forward, better to limit Wellington to 5 foreign players and free up Australian players that way. Unfortunately, foreign players are among fan favourites. And there is less likely to be what Fox is looking for in Asian players - and what about Asian Cup qualifiers looking to boost their teams...

Sydney Morning Herald:

The FFA has also heeded the advice of technical director Han Berger by reducing the number of A-League import spots from five to four for next season. Berger has been an outspoken critic of the number of sub-par foreigners in the competition, arguing their selection is hindering opportunities for local youngsters.'

The reality is that more foreign players will get Australian citizenship. These football people just see the A-League as a feedlot for possible Socceroos. They seem to care little for fans. And that is the problem.

FFA, please start making decisions based on thorough market analysis by segment.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Brisbane v Newcastle - Saturday 7:45pm

Last chance to see? Well no. But this season has proved that 'quality football' isn't the driving force for crowds.

Results football may well be important. And the Roar lacked results for 5 years.

Now they could be on the verge of something different. A emphatic result against the 'born-again' Newcastle could be the sign that Brisbane really are the team to beat.

And under 15s in for free, quite an investment where there is a charge to the club for transport - ask Clive Palmer.

Worth a look I think.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Fury provide a strange response to promoting the game in NQ

Stuart McLaren is one of the most articulate and effective promoters of the A-League.

He has done a great job creating interest for the Fury. He is the only member of any of the Queensland teams' coaching staff that I have heard on Brisbane radio.

The Fury, owned and run by the FFA, have banned him speaking to the media for 2010-11. This is incredibly short sighted and is shooting the team in the foot. Poor move.

Read it here.

Perhaps it is an attempt to protect Coach Straka?

At this level, McLaren's actions were to protect the reputation of Fury in the NQ market. Let's hope that the Fury's actions don't damage fans' interest in the team. But perhaps the bigger picture is sacrificing McLaren ('here punish this guy but let the popular coach go') to protect new local hero Straka.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Heart 2 v Victory 1

Deserved win for dominant Heart.

Two questions.

Where has this form been - particularly Worm.

How did Muscat stay on the pitch. Only one yellow for him - fits, elbows, in box hand balls - ignored.

Heart were down to 10 with a two card red, then 9 when Worm got cramp.

Great goal from Aloisi.

Heart did everything in first half but Muscat/Kruse pulled one back for 1-1 at half time.

Great entertainment, 26,000 crowd - should have been 40,000.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

It seems a shame...

The Brisbane Roar can't get media coverage in their home town. Well there is a bit - maybe a small story every second day, but nothing like the focus on Gold Coast United. Just why is not clear.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Perth 1 v Brisbane 2 - Mitch emerges - Man of Match with 30 Minute performance that turned the game

The headlines are 'Roar edge Glory late' but in the second half Perth hardly saw the ball. The official stat says the Roar had 54%, in the second half they may have had 80%. So much for must win for Perth. Brisbane should have had another 6, or at least 6. They actually scored 3 legal goals, but poor assistant referring robbed Mitch Nichols of a fair goal, and for some reason he was given a yellow card too. The replay showed he was onside by about two meters.

For a match in which Perth's strategy was 'kick it long' or 'kick them' - the card count is all wrong (Perth 18 fouls to Brisbane 10). Ref Ben Williams only gave out 3 cards - the 2 to Brisbane were clearly wrong - the goal to Mitch and for a 'dive' to Paartalu and yet the replay showed he was fouled.

If 2 weeks ago Brisbane were too predictably short passing, here Perth's myopic 'biff' strategy was found out. So much talent - just wasted. Including the speedy, youth team contractor, Ryan Pearson. Fowler couldn't get near the ball.

Crowd - 9,700.

CCM 3 v NQ Fury 2 - pity about the ref

This year the standard of play has reached a new hight. And a whole series of new refs have been used by FFA. Some, including the guy for this match, making comical errors of judgement.

And it looks like Fury - a team that must survive if the A-League is to in its current format and to help the Socceroos in Asia - are going to pay the price. Read here.

The Fury have as strong a fan base as any team bar the Victory and possibly Perth. They bring something different that adds to other teams performances. Look at CCM, the Fury really forced them to lift and entertain a crowd that had turned out in the cold and wet.

The A-League is about entertainment - not some complex idea about development of players and refs.

Time is running out for the FFA to get this.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Gold Coast 3 v Wellington 1

Wellington will be dirty. They had a fair goal disallowed. But if that one goes in they probably don't get the penalty.

Jason Culina was amazing. His energy won this game for Gold Coast. It is also amazing that Gold Coast could win over Bruce Djite (2 great great tonight including a back heel) just as they lost Shame Smeltz.

Just as amazing is Wellington's ability to pick Australians at the expense of their locals. Jade North appears not to be the answer in their defence, where'd he go? And then Olyroo Mirian Pavlovic is their youth contributor. Will Wellington pay the price for not giving fair game time to Kosta Barbarouses? Other teams seem to be able to regularly pick and play an emerging local talent, why not Wellington? Did Kosta fall out with Herbert?

Where was Manny Muscat's card?

Who decides what is entertainment?

The last person to decide to buy or ticket or watch on TV, that allows the game to be viable, decides what is entertainment.

Neither the overall model, nor the stadiums are viable at the moment. we need to find a way to get costs down or get more fans in. That last person who says 'I'll go' decides.

Entertainment part 57

I laughed. But it wasn't that funny. After 2,000 people turned up to watch Gold Coast, Jason Culina said 'we need more teams (he was referring to Sydney Rovers) so we have more games like in Europe.'

No we don't. We need more teams so we can 1. more back to playings teams twice instead (of what fans see as boring) three times, and 2. create some interest by having more differentiation in the league.

What we don't want is all teams playing the same way.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Revenge for Ange - served cold and as a dessert

From 1984 to 1993, Ange Postecoglou played 193 times for South Melbourne and coached the club from 1996 to 2000. He was key to FIFA recognition that South Melbourne was Oceania's best club of the 20th century with twice as many evaluation points as second placed Sydney City. Ange won two national titles as a player and two as a coach.

From there Ange coached the Socceroo under 20s from 2000 to 2007. Coaching the U20s is difficult, some countries put a lot of resources behind their teams, e.g. in Asia South and North Korea. Australia doesn't have that type of resources. Therefore, Australian U20s coach mandate is participating in as many tournaments as possible, and finding and developing potential Socceroos. And Ange's win-loss record looks good compared to more recent Dutch coaches. However, there were critics, SBS and Craig Foster most notably (you can probably find the youtube video).

In 2008, he spend around 9 months as coach of Greek team Panachaiki. Again he may have felt he wasn't judged fairly.

On his return to Australia, Ange would have been keep to return to the top of Australian coaching and an A-League contract. Melbourne Heart was the opportunity. However, there was a feeling that Heart was to be distanced from South Melbourne (and old Soccer). It is understood that the appointed coach, Johannes van't Schip, was offered Ange as his assistant. Schip hesitated. Schip wanted to link up with a former team mate (they played together in the early 1980s) from Ajax - Jesper Olsen. Olsen was already living in Victoria and had some involvement in the local soccer community. Offered an additional Australian assistant (to do their part training the next generation of coaches?), Schip now chose legendary Australian player Ante Milicic who had recently become coach of Sydney United in the NSW Premier league.

Ange had to wait. And the Roar provided, albeit with a move away from family to a region where his feats where not known. And to replace a local hero.

So, Brisbane's domination of Heart must have provided special satisfaction for Ange. But he didn't say so. He wouldn't. And didn't need to.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Brisbane 4 v Heart 0 - C'est Bon C'est Bon

There were two key things about this game; 1. the way Brisbane played and 2. what is, or isn't happening at the Heart.

Brisbane added long balls to their game. In the first 30 minutes, lots of them, lots and lots. It wasn't quite what I had in mind but it did the job. Especially when they mixed it in with a fast short passing game.

So what is happening at the Heart? They seemed OK for the first 10 minutes then seemed to fall apart or give up. Colosimo came off injured (51 mins) in the second half. But in the first it was Matt Thompson that looked injured - at least could not or would not run. The Roar made mince meat of Heart's defence - a fairer indication of the difference between the teams would have been 8-0. Next week Heart play Victory and the AFL reply will be the last of their worries.

Clearly the Heart have problems on the pitch. Hopefully they are not reflecting something else off the pitch.

The other note is on Skoko. This guy was lucky to only get one yellow card. He could have picked up 2 in the first half. And Alex Terra is a diver but after missing one in the first half Chris Boyle saw what he was up to in the second.

And c'est bon, Sibon - hardly in the game. Was Rutger Worm even playing?

The Roar's only bleak spot was Reinaldo's performance. I am a big fan and I want him to do well. But his form this year has been below expectations. And tonight it was just plain poor. Poor touches, poor shots. And yet now and again he found space, or put colleagues into space. But he should be an out and out goal scorer and he just has not been. His striking form was underlined by a straight forward one-on-one with the keeper that he kicked straight too him. Contrast Reinaldo to Mitch Nichols who was everywhere playing a real number 10 role and scoring a brilliantly composed goal.

Ange responded to calls to mix up the single focus short passing, well done for that.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Adelaide 2 v Perth 0

Van Dijk scores a great header and a penalty.

Wellington 2 v NQ Fury 1

Beaten by the wind. Ooopps.

So much for the World Cup influence on Wellington. Only 3 New Zealand players are in the Wellington starting 11, Tim Brown, Leo Bertos and Ben Sigmund. And Mark Paston is the only Kiwi on the bench. Little wonder that young up-and-comers like Kosta Barbarouses have to leave. Still it is expected that Kosta will be playing in Holland after the end of the season.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Gold Coast 1 v Newcastle 0 - Dijte no Duke

For 88 minutes Gold Coast can showed how dull short passing possession football can be. Especially when so many runs end in a poor pass or shot from way too far out. Then right back John Curtis worked some individual magic on his own for a cracking goal to save the game.

Newcastle found it too easy to sit back and defend for all but around 15 minutes in the middle of the second half.

Poor Bruce Dijte, he isn't a replacement for Smeltz, and too easily hustled out of the game.

The crowd of 2092 was a few people bigger than the weekend but hardly great for a school holiday crowd. Surely there are coast kids on leave and tourists from all over Australia? They aren't at the beach at night.

Gold Coast need a Charlie Miller to back up Jason Culina - who once again had to do just about everything. Miron was very aware that without the goal, he'd be under real pressure - not as coach but leader of the club.

Con leaves Newcastle

A-League Crowds

Here are some thoughts I added to Mike's blog:

'The A-League was an outcome of the lead up and performance by the socceroos at the 2006 world cup. Crowds did growth for 3 seasons, then the rubber band started to snap back. Like the EPL, few clubs have broken-even including all revenues. Until stadiums stop being the major expense and until clubs break even, the contraction will continue. Unless, there is either cost reform - ie play somewhere cheaper or pay less for players, or there is another major event to catch the public's attention for 3 years...' growth will be limited.

Here are the average crowd number for the 5 and a bit years of the A-League (I have used Wikipedia for the raw data):

Average crowds peaked in season 3, 2007-8. I recall in season 3 a growing feeling that 3 games against each team was just too much. Plus in Brisbane, Frank Farina was the new hope for a title and Asia - which he very nearly made.

Last year Adelaide moved ahead of the A-League season average for the first time - despite its last position. There is a real lesson there about whether it is winning or entertaining or just having on the park the players that fans want to see (can you see that Roar?).

Brisbane's fan base collapsed after it lost its first game to the new Gold Coast team (whose management boycotted the game and told their fans to stay away - well done lads got everyone's sympathy there). Some Brisbane fans went to Gold Coast where they lost interest. Then Frank was fired and the fan base fell away further and has not recovered.

It is interesting that Wellington, despite their world cup interest, have not - so far - managed to maintain their average crowd and are well down on their entry in 2007-8.

Melbourne Victory still has the largest average crowd but it is down from 21,000 last year to just under 15,000 this year. And while they have moved many games to the smaller AAMI stadium, it is concerning how empty their stadium is looking. I feel that empty stadiums have a real impact on atmosphere and discourage people.

Perth is the success story so far this season. Robbie Fowler and winning at home has made a real difference. In Perth bigger crowds are creating more atmosphere in their small stadium. Plus there is a sense of a return to the NSL 'Glory' days.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The press perspective

Have a read of this on why the Roar crowd is down.

Perhaps the point had been missed here that the Brisbane crowd is down because Van Dijk left - another foreign player opportunistically pitching from one club to the next for better money and a show case opportunity for an Asian transfer. Roll on central control of player contracts - like the US MLS and stop this anti-fan nonsense.

And this from Mike Colman on the power of controversy in sport:

'When he loaded up his mouth and fired off his bombs newspaper sales would go through the roof, television cameras would follow him through hotel foyers, and the man in the street would be frothing at the mouth with moral indignation. ...

God love 'em all actually. I mean where would we be without them? If not for the Arthurs, Akers, Mundines and Campos of this world, we sportswriters would be forced to write about . . . well, sport. And let's face it, how boring would that be?'

The real question is do these comments get people to games, and for that matter do the articles?

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A week of draws

Interestingly Ben Buckley is saying that Newcastle needs to show it wants an A-League team, and yet its crowd was relatively respectful at 6,977.

Draws to:
Melbourne Victory 0 v Wellington 0 (11,513 - how long ago since Victory played to only 11,000?)

North Queensland 0 v Melbourne 0 (4,922 - Fury dominated but couldn't score)

Brisbane 1 v Adelaide 1 (7,080)

Gold Coast 0 v Central Coast 0 (2,037 check this out FFA are promoting this as a record! - lowest ever crowd for A-League)

Wins to:

Newcastle Jets 2 v Perth 0 (6,977 - Perth as we have said before need a new coach)

Heart 2 v Wellington 1 (5,698)

Brisbane 1 v Adelaide 1

Van Dijk saved the Roar missing a sitter from a meter out. However, Adelaide clearly have the best strike force in the A-League with Marcus Flores, Leckie and Van Dijk outclassing the Roar.

Adelaide played an attacking, short passing game, as if they were the home team.

German Broich got his first goal from a free kick that Galekovic stood and watched bounce in.

The crowd was 7,000.

Melbourne Heart 2 v Wellington 1

Heart are looking better every week.

Great job to hang on for this win. Goals from Aloisi (reaching poach catching a cross from the right) and Brazilian Terra (great driving thunder bolt from the right).

Friday, September 17, 2010

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Van Dijk didn't leve for the money..

Today's Courier Mail:

'Since his arrival in Adelaide, Dutchman Rini Coolen has replaced Aurelio Vidmar as coach, with van Dijk admitting he prefers Coolen's "easy-going" nature to Postecoglou's "police officer" attitude.' ....

"Rini first lets us try to work things out. Then if they are still wrong he'll say something afterwards, but he won't try to be a police officer."

I'd say he was hoping to be picked up in Asia - as he had already indicated. But had a poor Asian Cup.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Playing out from the back - I see the point but not the attraction (stupid stupid-faction)

Ange Postecoglou said in the Courier Mail today:

'The first goal we conceded, while it came from Luke's pass, I'll defend that till the day I die. That was a mistake out of player trying to play out from the back which is what we want to. I've got no issue with Luke playing that kind of pass.'

This is U15 stuff. In fact since the FFA edict on 4-3-3, just about every team from U11 up. But few A-League teams play that way. Why? Because their first job is to make sure they have a fan base. Not some slavish following of the 'experts' view on how the game should be played.

But what does 'playing out from the back' achieve? Well if your team has more skills than your opposition - a lot. Possession turns into goals. But if you are on a par or below the standard of your opposition, expect to loose. After 2 or 3 years you may be good enough at this approach to win a league. After 6 years without success are there any Brisbane fans prepared to wait?

A quality team may use playing out of the back together with a range of tactics including the occasional long ball. They want to mix things up and keep the opposition guessing what could happen next.

Rather than signal their punches with repetitive passing moves.

Mid way through the first half of the Melbourne v Brisbane game Carlos Hernandes could be seen gesturing to his team mates to push up with him and hem Brisbane in. Once they did so, and pressed Brisbane across the pitch, Brisbane began to wilt. The blunt truth is that Brisbane's team does not have the skills to ensure that every pass finds its mark - particularly when the pressure is on. And the more pressure Melbourne applied, the more of the critical passes were spilled.

Up front the Brisbane picture was worse. They dominated possession outside Melbourne's box. Yet none shot from distance.

Brisbane's game, and its key passes spilled, looked about the quality of the U14, U15 and U16 games we see around Brisbane.

Slavishly following 'play out from the back' and then defending it, underlines how unsophisticated Brisbane's game was.

Expect every team to copy Melbourne's approach and press Brisbane in their defensive 3rd. How will Brisbane respond? The next two home games could determine Brisbane fans' decision about whether to come back to the team. It is a bad time of year to be found out.

Lordy Lordy - I agree

Geoff Lord knows how to make money from sport. And he has had enough of an FFA that has been looking the other way.

Have a read of this article in The Age:

''We would like a shorter season to make the competition stronger and more viable,'' he said. ''We would like to play a mid-year cup knockout competition, we could have State League clubs in it to make it more interesting and give them something to aim at.

''The clubs have basically had enough. The main thing is that we want a commission which would meet regularly, with representation from all clubs, to help run and strengthen the league. We want to have our own budgets, so money is not just lost in some central pool.

''The FFA don't have too many ideas, don't come up with any innovations or plans.''

Craig Foster interviews Brendan Schwab, chief executive of Professional Footballers Australia

It is here in the Victorian 'The Age'.

For me the A-League's trouble's have been brewing for some years. Schwab is correct in pointing back to the Crawford report. However, it should also be noted that Crawford recommended the commitment to quality playing surfaces - which has proved costly.

I agree Western Sydney should have been a priority. And I don't understand why Sydney Rovers were not to be based at Parramatta or Penrith. How did they win the bid? Other reports indicate that they will not make the funding deadlines.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Melbourne 3 v Brisbane 0

A soft and weak Roar have been smashed by tough enough Melbourne.

Very embarrassing mistakes at the back were punished by a clinical Melbourne.

Brisbane had 2 shots all game. They are looking like one trick ponies as time after time their right flank was exposed every time they tried to play out from the back.

Very poor game from the Roar.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Newcastle 0 v Brisbane 0

Newcastle have survived. And 7,066 watched.

The game was mared by 72 km per hour winds.

But Brisbane were not as good as we have seen them.

Still they were unlucky as Topor-Stanley could clearly be seen holding Solorzano's shirt and earlier Reinaldo was pulled away from goal as his header hit the cross bar.

At the other end Petrovski begged for his simulation to be counted as a penalty, Michael Bridges won a free kick with his dive against Murdocca and Solorzano was book for over doing an unfair challenge. Still, in Solorzano's case at least he can see how the game is played here.

Ruben Z was sent off for a 2nd yellow dive in challenge. I saw him get a straight red for a similar challenge when he played for Sydney. And perhaps Wehrman was lucky not to get 2 yellows.

Broadly, I agree with Ange...

Controversial issues need to be debated. That is what gets fans in. From the Sunday Mail.

Maybe it is too late, but maybe FFA is learning that you create interest by coaches, players, commentators (Fox Sports were asked a few seasons ago to stop critising refs) and fans all speaking out about things they think need changing:

'I have always believed that for the A-League to succeed in this country it needs to be strong enough to encourage discussion and sometimes accept criticism so that the average supporter believes they have a say in the sport.'

Newcastle on the brink....

From the Sunday Mail:

'... the threat of a strike looms large. The strain has spilled over to the training field, with former Brisbane Strikers star Kasey Wehrman and defender Adam D'Apuzzo almost coming to blows and having to be separated by teammates on Thursday. Skipper Michael Bridges and fellow attacker Sean Rooney were also involved in a heated exchange... '

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Match Preview Newcastle Jets v Brisbane Roar

Central Coast reminded us what can happen to a club that feels hard done by. However, Newcastle has had six years of issues with financing, winning the title, dud foreign players, sacking coaches, open disagreements between the owner and fans.

While I think Branco Culina could be the best coach in Australia, it may be that he will struggle with the current odds. The Roar beat Newcastle once before 0-5 (pity it wasn't at home). The same could be on again tomorrow. However, such a result could be pretty ominous for the future of the A-League. Can the FFA afford to own another team?

Does FFA have the strategy and resources to address the chronic problems with the ownership of clubs - FFA to own all? or centralised marketing/ticket sales and or fan based ownership, plus strategies to lower club costs - new fields and changes to the salary cap arrangements?

A lot hangs on the FIFA world cup decision in December.

Crowds so far this round

Central Coast - 6,829
Sydney - 7,558
Melbourne Heart - 4,200

The Newcastle crowd tomorrow will be a real challenge.

It was not a great idea to maintain the approach of playing each team 3 times. One home and one away would have been plenty and created some form of scarcity.

Perth may come to the rescue tomorrow. But the damage seems to have been done. Heart crowd in prime time and the Sydney crowd (although there was rain) is not setting the scene well for Sydney Rovers (are Rovers still go for next year?). Sydney Rovers should be based in Paramatta or even Penrith and call Western or Nepean Rovers.

Adelaide smash Sydney - Van Dijk starts his scoring with 2

Sydney 1 v Adelaide 3

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sydney 1 v Central Coast 1

Liam Reddy sent off. What will the match review panel do? Reverse the suspension. Clear dive.

Gold Coast 0 v Victory 1

Without Smeltz, Gold Coast just don't have it. I don't think Bruce Djite is the answer.

Why not put the crowd in front of the camera?

I think moral issues are starting to bite.

NQ Fury 2 v Adelaide 3

Keep going Fury.

Heart 2 v Glory 2 - ex Roar Baird dives back into the A-League

Baird's dive, together with Central Coast Mariners version last night to steal a draw against Sydney, will test the match review panel. Will they get 2 weeks? They should. Pity the results can't be changed.

Simon Colosimo was spitting chips after the game.

In Baird's case, he was on his own in the box. The debut ref was completely fooled.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Brisbane 1 v Wellington 0

Brisbane have proved that their new possession based approach is real.

Wellington, on the other hand, had very little. I was surprised to read some reviews today suggesting they were slightly the better team. In reality they had few answers. Coach Herbert had to resort to his old tactic of complaining to the 4th official. But it was his team that showed poor discipline and nasty tackling in place of skill. No wonder Herbert was so cheesed off at questions about Kosta. Surely he would wish for Kosta over the hapless McAlister.

With the Fevola experiment failing for the AFL at the Lions and the Broncos tanking, the Roar now have a real chance to draw back fans to the game.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Victory v Fury was the A-League's most entertaining game

... yet only 13,000 were there. Interesting to watch what happens to the Victory crowd. Have they been split by Heart?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Melbourne V 2 v NQ Fury 2 - Justice.

Well what a great game.

The ref had no idea what he was doing.

Fury score.

Fury were down to 9.

This the ref lets Cernak get pulled down in the box.

Then Kruze dives in the box and wins Grossman a red card and a penalty. Why?

Mid second half Melbourne's new Welsh player is brought down outside the box. And penalty! Why?

Then there is some pushing a shoving in the Melbourne box. Yellow card penalty. Eric Akoto is unset about something. Tells the ref something has been taken from him. Pushes Muscat over - oh Muscat had been standing on it. The ref sends Akoto off. Why?

In all that both Kruse and Dugandzic are yellow card for diving in the box.

Fury played 45 minutes with only 10 and a further 15 with only 9.

Beelzebubs letters to Lavicka on the squad for last night

Liam Reddy - drop to bench - hire Danny V former CCM

Seb Ryall - nearly there

Stephan Keller - make Captain best player on team

Hayden Foxe - too old too slow to play at the back (can he play striker?)

Stuart Musialik - keep

Nick Carle - hmmm maybe this is why he didn't get many games in England? Returning players should reward their fans and return to their original clubs - Newcastle

Kofi Danning
- great prospect but he was very isolated, can see why they tried to buy Sergio Van Dijk (who is wasted at Adelaide) - why did you let Chris Payne go he was your best last year (Brosque is done)

Terry McFlynn - we have seen all he has to offer - should have tried harder to keep other players and free up a foreign spot

Scott Jamieson - one of Australia's best prospects, needs to keep his temper under control, perhaps should have gone for overseas experience rather than turning on fans

Sung Hwan Byun - good prospect, not there yet

Rhyan Grant
- missing at key times?

Shannon Cole - needs to be starting (last 9 minutes)
Brendan Gan - needs to start (last 20 minutes)
Hiro Moriyasu - sorry didn't notice his 13 minutes

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Brisbane 1 v Sydney 0

Brisbane played like the defending champions and Sydney like they came 2nd last. Brisbane should have had 4 and indeed did get an early goal that Reddy pretended didn't cross the line.

Paartalu and Broich look great. Barbarousus has potential. Mitch is back to his original best. Henrique did a good job. Great goal - heaps of lead up work - from McKay.

Roar play well.

Pity crowd was only 10,333. Is a low for the first home game and for games v Sydney. Grass roots work with clubs does not produce fans. Maybe winning at home will?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Adelaide 3 v Melbourne Heart 2

Hindmarsh was a skating rink.

But Heart where awkward. Better but still they seem to play to fancy for their skills. And their defence, which on paper sounds like one of the best in the league - Beauchamp, Colossimo - is brittle.

Van Dijk got injured in the warm up. But Leckie and Iain Ramsay (2 goals) could keep him out for good. It is almost as if Van Dijk is missing Brisbane. he started badly here and turned it around but I can't see that happening twice.

On the upside for Heart, this was their best game. Skoko is out for 6 weeks. But that may be a positive. Worm and Sibone started to look good.

Gee the A-League squads are thin now.

Both sides were not quite good enough to play the way they tried to.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Goal Weekly: Still $4

Wow. Last year we saw the printed media on the A-League dry up. Even 442 Australia kept their A-League content in print to a minimum and pushed to the web and fan based blogs. But this is an old fashioned, grass roots publication. It has some dollars in production, it is paper and tabloid but great. Weekly - Monday in most locations.

I haven't heard of the authors but that is OK. You aren't reading the same old story which many in the soccer journalism game have fallen into - from Ray Gatt down (what can you write once you have written the league off?).

Goal covers every A-League game just played. Predictions for the next weekend. Some history of the game in Australia. Then the focus is Victorian state leagues and junior scores.

Some great ads.

Goals is refreshing. 5 stars.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Up to your old tricks in chapters 4,5 and 6

Gold Coast reintroduce cap. Hard to see them surviving this. AFL moving into town.

Feel for Jason Culina - and a range of quality players that play for GC. SEQ Roar?

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Gold Coast 0 v Brisbane 0 Miron: "It was like a dream"

Brisbane played fast and well. Gold Coast played like their stars have lost interest in playing.Very doubtful that they will win anything this year. Smeltz needs to climb on a plane to somewhere else. Even Jason Culina doesn't seem that enthused.

Unfortunately, Brisbane were without a centre forward and it looked like it. Eric Paartalu was the best player on the field. Thomas Broich looks very good but had got very tired by 70 minutes - so was and so did Henrique. Massimo came off with a thigh strain early and Mitch came on to play very well. A nice late cameo for Luke Brattan.

Shane Steffenuto was less convincing at left back, but we will see.

The crowd was very disappointing. And showed the wisdom in playing the opener at Suncorp last year. Only 6,000 and most were Brisbane fans. Oh dear. Brisbane needed a win here to ensure a crowd against Sydney in 2 weeks (bye next week). The Sydney game is being billed as an opener. Will be interesting to see if Brisbane has made up ground.

Team of the first round of version 6? North Queensland Fury!

Sydney 3 v Melbourne 3 - I must admit we had a laugh but that is all it was and nothing more

watch Mr Melbourne - Kevin Muscat - great laugh (tried some fancy footwork in the 6 yard box and gave the ball away for Sydney's first goal - made up for it later with what he does best - nutting players).

Mate Dugandzic is the A-League's new star with a goal and an assist.

Luck gives no change. Sydney did not ride their luck. Easy goals to Sydney - really skilful ones to Melbourne.

Most disappointing of the crowd, only 12,000 in a city of 5 million when the 2 dominant teams in the A-League play the opening game in prime time. Not good. Whatever offseason promotion there was has not paid off for Sydney. This is the best fans can expect from them.

Sorry, just reminds me of the business opportunity that Brisbane was. If only they had spent all that money on players... taken a calculated business risk... but 'baby that was years ago... '

Saturday, August 07, 2010

How many going tomorrow?

If you looked hard...

Courier mail buried their 'vote' today, 58% believe Brisbane will beat Gold Coast. Probably represents the readership. Pity ALL of the positive stories seem to be a about Gold Coast. Plus the big colour pictures.

How about at least equal column space for the home team?

Perth need Frank Farina

They have the talent, and the fans. Their system and long ball game is working against them. Frank could sought this out. He would take them to the title. Mitchell is, sadly, lacking.

Perth 3 v Fury 3 - Fury shine

In front of Perth's biggest ever A-League crowd - they had turned up to see Fowler (that is way you need a marquee) - Fury outplayed Perth.

Dave Mitchell lived up to his reputation as a nice guy but not much chop as a coach. Long balls every time. Yet North Queensland, Chris Payne (yep from Sydney FC), Dave Williams and Chris Grossman 90 + 2 (from left back) all got goals.

But the game changer has Fury's new centre back - who survived the bus shooting in the Africa Cup of Nations - Eric Akoto. You will hear more of this guy. He plays hard particularly up front for set pieces (including a deliberate kick that only got a yellow. He was great.

The refs this year are going to let more go - it is about please the fans. The Adelaide v Newcastle game showed that all ins are OK. Boring 0-0 in that game.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Heart v CCM - CCM take lead

17 mins gone.

A soft goal from a corner - alex wilkinson header.

reasonable crowd. Heart had possession till then - but not much in final 3rd.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Playing the teams twice would have been enough...

Three times is once too many.

Ange is tight lipped, but an upset is on

I think the Gold Coast's preparation is patching. And there is trouble in their camp. It appears owner Clive Palmer may sell, skipper Jason Culina is having second thoughts about the A-League and goal scorer Smeltz wants to go to Europe (before he is too old or has a bad season).

Brisbane coach Ange put in a good performance on ABC Offsiders on Sunday. But he has too. When asked if the Roar would be 'surprise' improvers or 'celler dwellers', he merely said he was happy with the pre-season. He will now stand or fall on the team's onfield performance. He has done his job.

I recon an upset is possible. I think Gold Coast's pre-season has been limited. I think they are hiding some cracks. A real upset Sunday.

This was the game I wanted to see. mainly for vengeance for Boxing day. But I am coaching.... Still I will get home to watch most of the first half on TV.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Slater Slater balmes FFA, unfortunately soccer fans don't have payTV

The Story is here.

The World Cup hasn't led to interest this time round. That needs free to air games.

Also Slater seems to be writing off Brisbane:

'No excuses for coach Ange Postecoglou after his big cleanout. Still it's going to be a big test, both on and off the field, for the club. Tommy Oar and striker Sergio van Dijk are significant losses for the Roar.'
Actually, Oar helped with the fans but Zullo had many more fans and the club used both van Dijk and Craig Moore in its promotion (to little impact). The big problem on the field last year was Craig Moore's poor form. Sorry he wasn't very good. And he was exposed by signing the dud Bob Malcolm.

Brisbane is Australia's untapped summer market. Unfortunately there are vested interested in the established codes. And when those codes don't perform for the fans...

Why is Brendan Fevola still in the press? The AFL know that while that have made sure Gold Coast is a success, the fans live in Brisbane. I recon Fevola has been featured in the Brisbane press more prominently that any other human being. More than Prime Ministers and even successful sports people. Why?

Saturday, July 31, 2010

This Wellington free kick should be stopped

Either Wellington is a New Zealand team and it can have 5 foreigners, a maximum of 5 Australians and no one else from another country. Or, it should be 'deemed' an Australian team and have its New Zealanders included as foreigners. Or, better yet allow all A-League teams to have as many New Zealanders as they want.

Allowing Wellington to sign Socceroo Jade North as a regular 'local' player when Australian based teams are struggling to get their squads to 20 is wrong. North Queensland still only has 19 players.

If New Zealand players are the same as Australian players for Wellington, it should be the same for every A-League club.

For Brisbane, this would mean another foreign spot is opened as Kosta would be re-classified from foreign to local.

But seriously how many young New Zealanders are missing out for more experienced Australians? Didn't some of the World Cup squad include New Zealand local leaguers?

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Brisbane Squad Review - 2010-11

The Roar have had their best pre-season despite a loss to Wellington in NZ and Everton at home. Do thye have what it takes or will Ange have to walk by year's end?

No. 1 Keeper Michael Theoklitos (5 star?)
Coaches must bring players with them. Michael is Ange's coup. A-League teams are built on defence and defences are built on goalkeepers. Michael has already been a great A-League keeper, but went overseas and lost a lot. After letting in 7 in his only game for Norwich, he now has a lot to prove. And if he does, he could take the Roar to the finals, if not the ACL. At the critical time, Reddy was a dud. Michael could have what it takes.

No. 2 Keeper Andrew Redmayne (2 star?)
If the Roar have to find out if Andrew is any good - or they start playing silly billies and giving no 1 and 2 turns, Brisbane are probably in trouble, particularly Ange.

The Roar have never looked so good in defence - except with Moore at his best - 2008-9.

Luke DeVere (4 star?)
Won great praise against Everton. Has learnt from Moore. A lot expected this year.

Ivan Franjic (3.5 star?)
Has looked fantastic as an overlapping right back. If the Roar click, Ivan could be setting up goals this year.

Matt Mundy (2 star?)
Start his career with great promise 2 years ago but faded last year. Needs to prove himself this year.

Matthew Smith (3 star?)
Looked OK playing for NQ Fury for 2 months. Lots of lower league English experience in the middle of defence.At 28 could be still young enough to learn and excel in the A-League. Brisbane need him to be still learning and improving. A real test for Ange's opportunistic buying from Fury.

Shane Stefanutto (4 star? or injury prone?)
Left back, 30 year Shane was born in Cairns and last year was in the top 10 highest paid in the A-League. No doubt his pay will have come down with a thud. However, it was long term injury that really hurt him and Fury last season. Lots of experience in Norway. Could be the difference for Brisbane in defence. Not worked too hard in the pre-season as he was eased back into it.

Milan Susak (3.5 star?)
Another central defender, Milan has great experience for a 26 year old at this level - 5 years in Serbia, 10 games with Adelaide United and 2 years in Germany. Not sure about him. I suspect the thinking is that if he can standout he will get a great sales margin at the end of the season.

Perhaps, on paper the midfield looks a little weaker than last year. But this year they will be more trainable and disciplined. And..

Matt McKay (4 stars? or 5?)
.. has turned down China and got the captaincy he was promised before Craig Moore turned up. he and Massimo will provide the fans names they recognise and respect. if this is Matt's year, it will be Ange's and Brisbane's.

Thomas Broich (5 stars?)
Could Broich be Brisbane's well behaved playmaker - at long last? Big shoes from Miller - but the rap from the pre-season including assessments from other teams is very good. Good to see that he seems to be able to play 90 minutes. Looking forward to seeing him. Against Gold Coast we could know.

Luke Brattan (2 to 3 stars)
If Luke had emerged last year as hoped things could have been different. Classic middle of the park passer. Interesting to see how much game time he gets. My guess is only a lot if things do not go well.

Massimo Murdocca (3 stars)
Fans love him or hate him. Gets lots of credit for holding up the midfield, pace and stamina. Can he keep going?

James Meyer (2 stars?)
Seems to have had a lot of promise early but hasn't been able to convert it - returned from overseas to play lessor leagues here. Huge incentive to show he has career ahead of him. Not sure.

Erik Paartalu (2 Stars)
Again had enough to get overseas early but didn't kick on (see a theme here? good sign in some ways for Australians overseas that they will get a second chance to get attention, get game time and learn). 2nd division Scotland isn't what it used to be. very gald to be surprised here.

Mitch Nichols (I would like to think a 4 Star?)
last year was a nightmare for Mitch. So many one-on-one's with keepers didn't go his way (or they did). This is his chance. Mitch must now show he is a trainable.

Brisbane's forward line has new faces. With van Dijk gone, someone has to stand up or Ange is in trouble.

Reinaldo (2 Star)
The goal again Sydney in 2007-8 won him over for many fans. Then he went to Korea and was broken by the training schedule. We got him back for free. But he hasn't been the same. Now he has done his hamstring and will not play till game 3 or 4. Oh dear.

Jean Carlo Solorzano (needs to be 5 Star for Brisbane to make the ACL)
There is a lot riding on Costa Rican Solorzano. On paper he seems to have potential and his loan deal seems to indicate he is here to get exposure for a European sale. Ange needs him to be a star. But with no pre-season (he arrived today to play 8 August) - he may take half the season to get going.

Henrique (3 stars)
Injury robbed Roar fans of Henrique last year. he needs to back to his best.

Kosta Barbarouses (4 Stars?)
Could keep some other forwards out. Has surprised in the pre-season. What were Wellington doing not playing this guy. Probably to be sold at the end of the year. But could be a real answer for Brisbane. May add to the midfield pace with some gas upfront. Watch this space.

Rocky Viconte (2 to 3.5 stars)
Already out with injury. I wish him well. Apparently looked good in what pre-season he had. game time?

Unfortunely Brisbane would be better off playing Gold Coast later in the season. As it is they need to do well to convince fans to stay with them. The Gold Coast are unlikely to have any fans anyway.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sounds like Newcastle 0 v Brisbane 1

Review made it sound like Roar snatched it at the end - almost against the play - penalty to Franjic after Broich brought down from behind in the box. But it sounds like there was a bit of local bias.

What's the use of getting sober, if you're gonna get drunk again? A-League use of twitter

Here are Brisbane Roar twitter accounts:

But clubs need to use this channel to its strength. Perhaps it is a deal with snail mail media, but how many clubs post up-to-date scores via Twitter? Isn't that the ideal use?

It can actually create some excitement and get people to think - "I wish I was there, I'll go next time".

And yet, by enlarge, it is being used as a way to promote future events days in advance.

For example, yesterday Newcastle played Brisbane Roar in the pre-season. Yet here we are and what happened? Neither club has up-dated its sites. Same for the Wellington v Brisbane game - we found out days later.

I realise it is the pre-season. But this is why FFA insisted on a pre-season, so that there is at least some sought of build up for potential fans. Rather than Gold Coast v Brisbane 1st game, and bam the season highlight is over. (I am cheezed off because the game of the team I coach finishes just soon enough for me not to get to Skilled park for the end of the game).

Roar v Newcastle last year turned out to be a real test for the teams and predictor of future fortunes. This year Newcastle have new foreign players and had their first game called off.