Monday, October 26, 2009


Ange v. the Lads - update

No Moore. No Malcolm. No Tiatto. No Miller. It was always going to be a stringent test of Brisbane's resources.

And yet they acquitted themselves not too badly, on the whole. Although they were plainly outclassed in midfield for much of the game, and had every reason to let their heads drop after the injury to Reinaldo, they made a real fight of the game in the final twenty minutes, and perhaps deserved to equalise. They may well have done so, in fact, had Matt McKay not donned a cloak of invisibility in the second half, after a moderately influential first.

But there were others who stepped up for the Roar in the second period, not least Tommy Oar, and their last-ditch surge perhaps suggested that "the lads" are not wholly indispensable.

As for Sydney FC, it was far from their best performance, but teams that can play badly and still win command respect. Full marks to Vitezslav Lavicka for sticking resolutely with the system and the players that accounted for Melbourne, despite the setback in Adelaide. Although the Brosque-Corica-Bridge combination didn't quite function as it should in the first half, Sydney's first goal underlined just how effective the trio can be in concert, when the cogs are turning properly.

And the fact that Sydney bounced back from a dispiriting loss with a win makes this damning-with-faint-praise from Mike Cockerill particularly distasteful. Cockerill has done his best to subtly run down the affable, diligent Lavicka in the interests of promoting local aspirants (a favourite theme of his), but linking yesterday's pitiful attendance to a nascent "blandness" at the club is disingenuous. The A-League crowds are down across the board, and a wet Sunday afternoon game against a club lacking many of its recognisable faces is hardly going to produce a bumper turnout in 2009/10.

On the matter of Sydney's "injury breaks" in the final minutes, he has more of a point. That was indeed cynical, and the sort of thing that the A-League could do without.

I must say that Cockerill's constant bleating about foreign vs local coaches is starting to wear very thin. I'd much rather read Hassett these days than Cockerill - he seems to be much more of a professional and has hidden his Melbourne background quite well.
One can't even attempt to lump together Sydney's consistently poor attendances into one basket - un-entertaining football is but one of a number of factors contributing to empty spaces at the SFS (and it was no different under loud-mouth "local" John Kosmina).

The ironic thing is that most of the fans Sydney are trying to attract wouldn't be able to discern the subtle differences in style between a conservative Czech import and a local manager.

As you rightly said, low crowds are an issue that plague the ENTIRE league and they probably have less to do with the aesthetics of the football on offer than the promotion of the game and engagement with the wider community - just look at the Gold Coast ;)

PS. Consider yourself linked, Mike :D
The low crowds in Brisbane are partly due to the total lack of interaction between the Roar and most of the local clubs.
Lip service in this area wont wash anymore
Am I the only person in this city that enjoys a careful buildup with incisive one touch football aiming to retain possession instead of turning the ball over for no good reason?
yes hilly,

you are the only person.


Hi Mike

Hav e a good look at the goal the Roar conceded against Newcastle - defenders against one striker - and the defender who did not jump, who turned his back to the ball and had it go just over his head - Craig Moore. Sorry this year he just has not looked as good as other A-League central defenders, let along taking to the marque spot. And yet he is the one Ange wants to keep.
'I must say that Cockerill's constant bleating about foreign vs local coaches is starting to wear very thin.'

I agree most Roar fans want Frank back. And if not Frank a foreign coach.
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