Saturday, October 14, 2006

 

The Kendall Chorus

Writing about the football in last night’s Central Coast v. Sydney game will only depress me, so I’d like to turn my attention to another facet of the occasion.

The Central Coast Leagues Club has a small, rather dimly-lit room near the back called the Kendall Bar. This has been the pre-game meeting point for the Marinators, the Gosford team’s boisterous fan group, since well before the A-League proper began.

Last season, before the Central Coast v. Sydney game that was won 5-1 by the visitors (sorry folks, had to remind myself of that), the Kendall played host to an exuberant singing contest between the two groups of supporters.

In one memorable exchange, the Cove’s attempts to underline their “Bling” tag by chanting “We’re so rich it’s unbelievable!” met a witty retort from the Marinators: “Buy us a beer, buy us a beer, buy us a beer…”.

Last night, battle was rejoined, in similarly good-natured fashion. The Marinators were reinforced by some energetic conga-drumming, and although the Cove numbers were inevitably depleted, they gave as good as they got. It was a wonderful sight (and sound).

What made it particularly pleasing was that, outside of the singing conclaves, the two groups were mingling warmly. Less vocally gifted Covites and Marinators were chatting about the game to come, about Australia’s performance on Wednesday night, about the regime change up the road in Newcastle.

Let’s just step back for a moment, and contemplate what was happening.

This was a putative derby game, in which the two sets of supporters – and the most passionate on each side were there, believe me – were in the same bar, many half-pissed already, chanting their hearts out. And yet I doubt whether there was a single genuinely cross word exchanged between the two groups.

How often would you see that in world football?

Passion without vitriol, or violence. It’s something about certain A-League fan relationships to foster, and cherish.

Comments:
Wasn't at Kendalls or in The Cove but my experience of the game was similarly warm. I love going to games there. Unfortunately I read about some name calling from Mariner's supporters on their own forum - those on-line frowned upon the behaviour thankfully. Stuff like "GO home wog" to Sydney fans. I hope that was just the odd idiot. I saw none of that to be fair.
http://ccmfc.proboards25.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=1160747086
 
Brilliant news. May that sort of behaviour spread around the football world.

Now about that game Mike...
 
...Wasn't at Kendalls or in The Cove but my experience of the game was similarly warm. I love going to games there. Unfortunately I read about some name calling from Mariner's supporters on their own forum - those on-line frowned upon the behaviour thankfully. Stuff like "GO home wog" to Sydney fans. I hope that was just the odd idiot. I saw none of that to be fair.
http://ccmfc.proboards25.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=1160747086...

Thanks for the heads up, TT.

I don't have the full info yet (and FWIW, I was way over the other side of the ground, in Bay 51), but it seems like it was exactly what happened last time, i.e. a few interlopers, not from the core of the Marinators, decided to pick fights with the Sydney guys just for something to do.

The core Marinators group, inter quos marinermick, Subby (rubbernose on the Mariners forum), kevrenor, LouMacari etc., are top blokes and genuinely have the game's best interests at heart. It's a real shame when some teenage dickheads partly spoil it for them.
 
...Now about that game Mike...

Game? There was a game last night? ;-)
 
Not so friendly on the pitch - Carbone taken out with a head to the leg, Alex Brosque dragged down...
 
Last night's game was the first taste of local A-League rivalry for me and I liked what I saw off the pitch. Good fun all-round and while playing teams three times in the league isn't ideal, it would be difficult to get tired of last night. Maybe this is more reason for a Wollongong team we were discussing before the match! Of course it helps when both teams have sizable and respectable supporter groups, as last night would not have happened in Newcastle for instance.
 
Thats not a rivalry mikey...thats CCM and Bling fans are having a local love-in.

I remember standing out Telstra Dome waiting for some friends as about 80-100 Sydney fans walked past chanting about how they'd like to petrol-bomb Melbourne. Mostly they were getting bemused looks from the locals, and I turned to my friends whoe were already there, and almost simultaneously the group of us held up one of our hands with five fingers spread out. I fancy it silenced the chanters for a second (not really, but it felt good).
 
http://sfcu.com.au/index.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=10645
 
I wonder how friendly the Marinators would have been if Sydney actually did end up nicking Lawrie McKinna from them..
 
...http://sfcu.com.au/index.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=10645...

Big deal. Young newbie idiot CCM fans causing trouble, not representative of the Marinators proper.
 
You won't see the Sydney-CCM love-in relationship replicated elsewhere in Australia based on what I've heard from most fans.

Shame too about the lack of derbies for the time being. At least you New South Welshmen have a few (and technically Queensland too.)
 
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
 
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