Friday, August 31, 2007


Mix 'n' Match - brief update

Graham Arnold has put a brave face on the compromise squad he's been forced to pick for next month's friendly against Argentina in Melbourne. The Argentina squad is an imposing one, featuring many of the players who provided such a fine display of football at the recent Copa America; full credit to them for sending their crack troops, but in truth the match has very little relevance beyond ensuring the FFA some much-needed gate revenue.

With the Olyroo qualifiers happening at the same time, and thus depriving the senior side of such 2010 hopefuls as Mark Milligan, Nathan Burns, Danny Vukovic and Stuart Musialik, Arnold's use of the term "squad of the future" to describe the collection of players due to face Argentina is faintly ridiculous. Once again, though, it's hard to see what else he could have done.

The original June 6 date for the friendly would have been both opportune (given the proximity of the Asian Cup) and free of availability issues. As things stand now, the match is taking place in a strange no-man's-land, in the midst of the Euro season, with no tournament on the horizon, and without the Under 23s.

That's what happens when you allow yourselves to be bullied over scheduling, as I remain convinced the FFA were with regards to the original date.

It's an unbalanced squad as well, with no less than eight central midfielders and no natural right-sided players (unless you count the tactical salamander Luke Wilkshire). But that is what we've come to expect in recent times.

I think the biggest mystery is how (with all due respect to the man) Graham Arnold maintains his position after all this time. No other footballing nation in the world would keep an underperforming caoch for so long...
I know i know i have heard about Advocaat but i we've had no confiramtion on it from the FFA... so what teh hell is going on here?
As I've said elsewhere, its about time we looked at Richard Garcia. He has got to have earned his chance, especially given our lack in wide areas.

Colosimo and Bolton's inclusions are a joke.
Why is Carle missing given he is a regualr at the moment.
Heffo couldn't make it in Europe yet he is good enough for international football?

Am I missing something.

Agree on tactical selections but Arnie has limitations as Dirty Harry said
....Why is Carle missing given he is a regular at the moment....

Have another look at the squad. ;-)
...As I've said elsewhere, its about time we looked at Richard Garcia. He has got to have earned his chance, especially given our lack in wide areas....

It's the usual story. Those of the Euro second tier who aren't part of the favoured crew are just ignored, regardless of form.
I for one have no sympathy for Arnold. The manager is there to pick the best side available to him and Arnold at the Asian Championships showed that he simply can't figure out who his best players are. Nick Carle represents precisely the qualities Australia sorely lacked throughout the tournament,i.e. confidence, composure, a sure first touch and above all, talent, so I'm at a lost as to why he didnt get proper game time. Tactical formation issues don't cut it with me. You mould your formation according to the players you have and not the other way around. with all due respect to those apparent 'superstars' playing Europe, only Viduka and Kewell can match Carle when it comes to the above mentioned qualities.
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