Sunday, 31 August 2008

Magnificent Mariners...Mile and McAllister

Central Coast Mariners smashed Queensland 4-2 and Sydney FC put five (5-2) past Perth.

The Mariners lost Ahmed Elrich for the season due to injury and Adrian Caceres before the match.

But they needn't have worried.

Mile Jedinak was back and wiped out any threat from Charlie Miller or indeed any Roar player. How the Mariners had missed him.

Keeper Mark Bosnich returned significantly overweight but it was Liam Reddy who stole the show...with a number of embarassing errors giving Matt Simon and Dylan MacAllister easy opportunities. They both scored.

The Mariners looked well-organised this week. Jedinak ran the show and scored a wonderful free-kick. Their confidence grew throughout.

They may have lost their wingers but with Dylan MacAllister adding a serious goal threat, two on debut he should have had three, the Mariners will take some stopping.

Even if they have no width.

The Roar have a lot of work to do. Matt MacKay and Massimo Murdocho huff and puff but they'll rarely blow much down, not regularly anyway. One has to go and Frank Farina needs to reshape his team.

Danny Tiatto is way too slow at full-back these days and Robbie Kruse needs to start.

He, not Michael Zullo, was dynamic last season and it's time to give him an extended run.

Farina has plenty of talent but the team is lacking variety and invention. They may do better away from home. With Reddy gifting goals a poor performance tonight was punished further.

In Sydney Perth somehow contrived to give away a shocking first goal to Alex Brosque. Eugene Dadi showed they are a team to reckon with, if they get their collective minds on the job.

Dino Djubic was sent-off for abusing or maybe even spitting at the ref and Sydney converted the penalty and scored at will for a 4-1 half-time score.

Were Sydney any good? Hard to tell. But their fourth goal showed three Sydney players in the box waiting for a cross. Shannon Cole scored and that might be the difference.

Players actually getting into the box. Sydney missed that last year. Corica, Cole Bridge, Brosque all scored and John Aloisi came on to look for more goals. Sydney were shocking in the second half against ten men. Perth were poor throughout. But it's Sydney's goal threat that will give them hope this season.

They are already top...with Melbourne.

Interestingly Canberra's Nikola Topor-Stanley looks jaded, like his mind or body hasn't quite returned from Beijing. Seems like he needs a break after three months training leading into the Olympics. But there's no time for that is there?


I'm furious never mind Ricky Herbert

Apparently Ricky Herbert is furious with his sides display last night!

I'm more furious. I had to turn it off at half-time. Yes I lasted that long.

The difference between me and Uber Coach Ricky was I knew what was coming.

Some of the Fox Sports guys have talked the Phoenix up since they started in the league.

But they've been dire to watch. Even when they've scraped a win or come from behind to scrape a loss.

Tedium. Poor football with hardly a player of interest to admire.

Last night they just built on what they'd achieved in their amazingly insipid home performances in Round 1 and 2.

Bottom, by miles.

A midfielder or two wouldn't hurt. And I don't care if Richard Johnson has played for Watford scored against Manchester United he is not good enough to lead an A-League side.

Compare him to Carlos Hernandez, Diego, even Charlie Miller. And if Michael Ferrante is your other Central Midfielder then you are going to get exactly what you are getting.

Dire dire football.

Maybe Jon McKain could improve the Central Midfield, maybe Johnno could go Centre Back.

Maybe I'll just turn the telly off earlier next time.

I hate watching Wellington Phoenix, Auckland Kings in fact any New Zealand team in the NSL, or the A-League they have all been RUBBISH!

Someone do something.


Canberra A-League: More than the Mariners

The Central Coast Mariners started with 600 members in Season 1. Two years before the first game is played by the Canberra side, we've hit 602 Foundation Members.

We need more, we want more, but let's just take a moment to recognise what we've achieved in just 8 weeks or maybe less.

$4-5 million dollars locked in. A major Government (secure) investment, key investors from the Business community. Support from Ned Zelic, Carl Valeri, Caitlin Munoz and many more. Support from EVERY the Club in Canberra and the Region.

A W-League side Canberra United to lead the way. A Five year Business Plan completed.

We have someway to go still, but who would bet against us now?

With your belief in Canberra football and the Region we can romp it in.


Saturday, 30 August 2008

FFA: Archie leads assists... a mistake surely?

A-League Assists

If you look at the FFA Hyundai A-League player assist table it shows after Melbourne Victory's 5-0 demolish of Newcastle Jets that Archie Thompson leads the assist table with 3.

A mistake....

Surely Jade North should be on 3, and after last weeks showing Tarek Elrich should be on at least 2.

Interestingly it's not a lack of new players that is causing the Champions to ship goals, it's the fellas who won the title.

Ante Covic and Jade North must already,mentally, be on the Socceroos plane. Tarek Elrich will clearly never be on that plane if he continues like this.

Melbourne. Were they that good? Hard to tell, although Billy Celeski thought so as he started to showboat. Joel Griffiths wasn't happy. Me I loved it. We need more of it:)

But the Jets were woeful and the best Coach in the league's side Gary Van Egmund's side has shipped 8 goals in 2 games.

And Victory certainly have the depth to challenge any team that can't commit for the ninety.

It started like all Victory home games tend to do. Dull with a Victory side struggling to make any impact never mind play decent football.

For once, Ernie Merrick took a risk. Michael Thwaite got injured and Archie Thompson was sent on in the first half. Well done Ernie three attackers.

And the League's best player combined with, well everybody, Danny Allsopp, Carlos Hernandez and Ney Fabiano. It was vintage Archie from a more central and slightly deeper, at times, position.

And even Grant Brebner scored. Last week his first touch went thirty yards and more. This week he would have done the same but the net stopped it:)

Good signs for the League to see Victory starting to match the standards of season 2. Maybe Ernie can play attacking football without Fred.

With Carlos Hernandez fit and firing, and Archie ready to toy it should be great to see the Victory take on Adelaide next. A win there and well they really will be setting the pace.

Newcastle Jets 9 goals in 3 with Sydney FC next up. Lacking a Stuey Musialik and a Mark Bridge. I'd like to see Adam Griffith in centre midfield, Matt Thompson at left-back.

Jade North and Tarek Elrich need to improve. The imports need to improve. And Van Egmund needs to seal up the defence and soon.

One thing about Van Egmund is he'll be looking at ways, creative ways to improve his side. But with such a short season it needs to happen sooner rather than later.

A home game against Sydney could be just what they need..then again maybe not.


Friday, 29 August 2008

Young Matildas 3 Japan 3.

Kyah Simon and Emily Van Egmond score for Australia....

"It was a much better performance today. The score was 3-3 which isn't much different to the other day (Young Matildas lost 4-3 on Wednesday) but the quality of play was much better today. Kyah Simon (2) and Emily Van Egmond scored the goals, but we dominated for maybe 70% of play today. From that point of view the scoreline might have been disappointing," said Young Matildas Coach Alen Stajic speaking from the AIS training grounds in Canberra.

"Young Ashley Sykes, the Dubbo girl, had a one on one with a minute to go but the keeper put on a good save, so maybe we could have nicked it, but overall it was a much better performance today.

"We had five or six girls who are a real threat going forward. Kyah Simon (NSW) is fantastic, Emily Van Egmond (NSW), Young Sam Kerr (WA), Theresa Polias (NSW)and Ange Formida (SA) so we've got five or six who are really dangerous, who can strike from anywhere," reflected Stajic.

The Young Matildas have two games against China Under 20's at the AIS next month before heading for their Pre-World Cup Qualifiers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 15-25 October against Iran, India, Krzygstan, Thailand and Chinese Taipai.

The top two will qualify for the Asian Cup which also act as World Cup Qualifiers.

"This is only our third camp together so we're going well.

"The China games will be against a team a couple of years older than our girls, it will be a real physical hit-out for our girls against a side about to go to the Youth World Cup so that will be a real test." added Stajic.

The pre-World Cup qualifier competition is currently expected to end on October 25th putting some doubt on Young Matildas availability for the first W-League round.

The W-League is expected to start on October 26th. Date still to be confirmed.


Canberra A-League update: FFA pursue Canberra.

FFA chief commercial officer John O'Sullivan spoke to Ivan Slavich yesterday.
The FFA are pursuing Canberra as a possibility for the 2010-11 season.

Here's the most up-to-date news on the bid...more money rolls in.

FFA chief commercial officer John O'Sullivan spoke to Ivan Slavich yesterday.

The FFA are pursuing Canberra as a possibility for the 2010-11 season.

"Canberra is definitely being considered for an A-League team," Slavich declared.

Slavich also stated, "I've had further investment interest. This time from Melbourne.

"Further Foundation Memberships would significantly help the Canberra bid. We need to get people to sign-up for this once in a lifetime opportunity.

"Once the 5,000 Foundation Memberships are taken. That's it. There will be no extensions," said Slavich.

"We have completed our five year Business Plan and will present to the FFA in the coming weeks."

Originally Canberra had been expected to present next week, but such was the strength of Slavich's initial proposal the FFA have pushed the date, as yet unknown, back.

With Townsville and the Gold Coast getting the nod, as expected, for 2009/10, Canberra and Melbourne lead the pack for 2011, with Wollongong an outside bet at this stage.


Canberra W-League Coach

The first historic Coach of a National Women or Men's Canberra team in the new football era is......Assistant Matildas and current ACTAS Coach Robbie Hooker.

Now just the small job of getting a team:) Good luck Robbie. And you can hear Robbie on Nearpost Radio from 7pm next Tuesday. Robbie will be talking players, plans, promotion and more.

And seems like the first Canberra home game could be televised. Watch this space.

Caitlin Munoz to Captain the side. I've no idea but it would seem a logical me that is:)


Thursday, 28 August 2008

Melbourne to fire at home...what Salary Cap?

Can't wait to see Melbourne and Sydney playing at home this weekend. Both of the big city clubs have shown they have enough talent and money to keep me awake this year...

Melbourne might have the luxury of leaving Archie Thompson on the bench. Wow!

And Sydney still have John Aloisi to come in.

Melbourne take on Newcastle but could stuggle at home in front of the passionate and demanding Victorian support. And Joel (Griffiths) is guaranteed to cause a stir and maybe a goal or two at the Dome. Should be great to see what Ernie, oops nearly said Arnie, comes up with.

Grant Brebner, Archie Thompson, Leigh Broxham, Nicky Ward and Seb Ryall all fighting to get on the bench for Melbourne?

Sydney miss the swearing, Ref-abusing Stuart Musialik but they too have Mitch Prentice, Adam Casey, Adam Biddle and John Aloisi all pushing for a start. The Sydney-side showing more depth in the forward line than previous years. Pity about the defence.

Perth will relish the challenge and with Nikita Rukavystya coming off the bench there is the suggestion of an increased quality in the Western Australian side. Jimmy Downey and Jamie Harnwell haven't started yet, so again more depth?

Adelaide take on Wellington. And can you really see Wellington getting more points than last year. Lei Lei Gao and Adam Kwasnik give some hope. But Gao has been injured and Kwasnik needs a midfield to help him.

The Phoenix have not one midfielder, maybe Daniel on a sunny day, that I would like to see in my team. Will the crowds plummet in NZ? Let's hope not.

And Mark Bosnich makes his professional return against the only man fatter than him in the league the goal-scoring sensation former Glasgow Rangers star Charlie Miller.

And how come Craig Foster Miller, the goal-scoring sensation, can play football if he's Scottish!

Should be a good game. The Roar have Robbie Kruse still to play, Michael Zullo a nice sub, Reinaldo maybe on from the start. Again a team from a big city with more depth?

Tell me again how the Salary Cap spreads the talent?

Kevin Muscat, Archie Thompson, Carlos Hernandez, Socceroo Michael Thwaite, Nicky Ward, Ney Fabiano, Juan Luis Lopez, Danny Allsopp, Grant do they fit them in under the Salary Cap compared to say...the Mariners or the Jets.

or are other clubs just not able to fill the Marquee, the Under 23 Marquee, the Service Agreement and indeed spend the Salary Cap?

Enjoy the goals:)


Townsville and Gold Coast: Who's next?

And then there were 10.

Canberra, Wollongong and Two bids, one team, from Melbourne. So two from three. With the strength of the Canberra bid already, I'd be backing the Capital to win the race for the next spot.

Have you seen Win Stadium:)

In further great news the FFA are talking about 14 teams which of course leaves space for the second Sydney and Melbourne team. Just not yet.

The bid from Canberra never looked so good. And let's face it when did you hear of Wollongong Council supporting a bid.

Can you imagine with all the shonky donky stuff going on down there, Buckley's would say Ben surely!

And when we win the race the more important challenge is to produce a team that is worthy of the people of the city, competes at the highest level year in year out, is profitable, and producces exciting football and young Canberran footballers who can take our football and city name across the Asian region.


W-League:Recruitment drive on.

With a number of Coaches announced or about to be announced the race is on to sign the players.

It's a national league and with TV exposure Sydney FC or Queensland Roar romping home with huge win margins would help no-one. So a cunning plan has been devised to spread the player quality across the League and the Country.

Matildas Coach Tom Sermanni has produced a list of 60 of the best female players in the country. Included on the list I would expect Matildas, former Matildas and current Young and former Young Matildas to make the bulk of it.

Clubs, there are 8, can choose as many players as they want from that list in Draft 1.

But it is my understanding that Sydney FC, who could have up to 25 NSW players on the list, maybe more, are restricted to just 10 players from the list. The rest of the teams can pick as many as they wish.

In Adelaide or Perth Glory there might be just three or four players on the list, or even less.

Perth could pick any number of other players on the list, almost guaranteeing them a start should they wish to cross the Country every other week to play!

Where if a player on the list is from Sydney given the huge number of Sydney/NSW talented players not all will get a game.

Like the men's league the talent spreads across the country depending on pay. Unlike the men's league the W-League in Season 1 has no pay.

The FFA have agreed to pay airfares for three players to fly from, for example Sydney to play for Perth Glory each week. Thus potentially strengthening all teams.

Of course training/coaching is restricted if key players come in for just the games.

But the idea is to ensure the best players in the country are playing each week.

Which after all is what we want and need for player development. And indeed to make the televised game as entertaining as possible.

The first window allows for 18 players to be signed, with a further signing window before the Season starts.

Will players sign and travel to play for Perth or Adelaide if not selected for Sydney FC? They would in the A-League but the circumstances are slightly different.

If you want to play in the W-League and you can't get a start in Queensland or Sydney maybe they will travel.

More details to come on team selection and how the process works.

An interesting strategy. Will it work? I guess it could.

What say you?


Canberrans start for Young Matildas

Christine Walters and Bronywyn Studman both started in the Young Matildas 4-3 loss to Japan yesterday in Canberra. Walters played at right-back and had a particularly strong game according to Coach Alen Stajic. "But," he noted, "both went very well."

The Japanese squad arrived on Saturday and have a large squad. Their younger players defeated Australia Under 17's on Monday and the older players beat the Young Matildas 4-3 on Wednesday.

There is another game for the Young Matildas on Friday at 11am at the AIS.

With the Canberra winter disappearing this week it's a great time to be outdoors playing and wathcing football:)

Coach Alen Stajic is hoping to be appointed Sydney FC W-League Coach. Interviews were held last Monday but the decision has still to be announced.


Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Canberra United: Coach announced Friday.

Young Matildas lost 4-3 today to Japan Under 19's, but in other local news the Coach of Canberra United will be announced on Friday morning.


Canberra United W-League developments

The new Canberra United Coach is expected to be announced on Friday at MacKellar Stadium, a call for Assistant Coach and Team Manager will go out ASAP.

And players will be recruited ASAP after that.

And I'm expecting the TV deal to be announced this week as well. September is going to be a busy month for our new National side. First home game expected to be the first weekend in November. Watch this space!


More Youth football planned

Zambia and Bulgaria Under 20's will join the AIS to take part in a 3-way tournament to be played at Deakin Stadium from Sat 6th-Wed 10th. And the ACT Rockets and Canberra FC will also play friendlies against each of the overseas teams. Details to be confirmed.


Canberra Youth to shine on a National Stage.

Great news this morning in the Nation's Capital. ACT Rockets (Youth) are expected to play a number of games between October and Febuary against A-League Youth sides. Nothing is confirmed but progess is looking good, very good.

Negotiations are at an early stage but signs are very promising.

Adelaide United, Melbourne Victory, Central Coast Mariners are just some of the clubs expected to play a Canberra Youth side.

And there is also a game lined up against Illarwarra Youth in the coming months.

The competition for places is expected to be fierce. With ACTAS, ACT Rockets Youth and other players all looking for a start.

It is proposed that players will have to commit to three trainings per week. An increase from what all Premier League Clubs currently undertake.

But what an opportunity for the Youth of Canberra.

Playing week in week out in front of A-League Youth Coaches with a place at an A-League Club up for grabs.

There's more to come no doubt but probably the most exciting development in Men's football in Canberra for a long time.

So guys the (short) ACT season maybe be over for some, but it's time to get training and get your boots back on:)

Who knows you could play against Kaz Patafta, Shaun Ontong, Jason Naidovski, Michael Zullo, Nick Tsatalios, Even Berger, even an over-age Grant Brebner, Stuart Musialik or Dez Giraldi.

Games are hoped to take place before the W-League games but again this will depend on a number of factors not least the FFA.


Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Young Socceroos complete tour of Japan

Sam Munro and Dane Milovanovic featured in the Young Socceroos squad in the SBS tournament in Japan. Results below.

The Qantas Young Socceroos have been defeated by Argentina 0-2 in their final match of the Shizuoka Broadcasting System (SBS) Cup in Japan.

After a scoreless first half, Argentina scored midway through the second half with a well worked goal before sealing the result with a goal from the penalty spot just before full-time.

Earlier in the tournament, the Qantas Young Socceroos went down to Japan in a penalty shoot-out (4-5) on Saturday, but defeated Shizuoka Province 1-0 on Sunday courtesy of a goal from Newcastle Jets striker Jason Naidovski late in the second half.

Speaking after the match, Qantas Young Socceroos Head Coach Jan Verslaijen was pleased with the performance of his players in their first competitive tournament under his care.

"This was a very good tournament for us to participate in against some very good, high class opposition in particular Argentina.

"It was a good test and we found that we can compete with these teams to a certain level, especially in terms of defence and organisation, but we need to do more work on playing with the ball.

"This international experience will be of great benefit to us as we head towards the AFC Championships," concluded Verslaijen.
The Qantas Young Socceroos will now return to Australia to prepare for the AFC Under 19 Championships which will be held in Saudi Arabia in October.


Shizuoka Broadcasting System (SBS) Cup
Location: Shizuoka City, Japan
The SBS Cup is one of the oldest international youth football tournaments having been held since 1977 .
This year's tournament saw Under 19 representative teams from Japan, Argentina, Australia, and Shizuoka youth.

For more information please visit,

Saturday 23 August:
Australia 0 Japan 0 (Japan win 5-4 on penalties) @ Ashitaka Stadium
Argentina 4 Shizuoka Province 0 @ Ashitaka Stadium

Sunday 24 August:
Australia 1 (Jason Naidovski 70') Shizuoka Province 0 @ Nihonndaira Stadium
Argentina 3 Japan 2 @ Nihonndaira Stadium

Tuesday 26 August:
Australia 0 Argentina 2 @ Ecopa Stadium

Japan 3 Shizuoka Province 2 @ Ecopa Stadium

Qantas Young Socceroos Squad for SBS Cup
Andrew Redmayne (gk) (Central Coast Mariners), Sebastian Ryall (Melbourne Victory), Nathan Elasi (Melbourne Victory), Luke De Vere (Queensland Roar), Mitchell Nichols (Queensland Roar), Tahj Minniecon (Queensland Roar), Jason Hoffman (Newcastle Jets), Jason Naidovski (Newcastle Jets), Daniel Mullen (Adelaide United), Milos Lujic (Oakleigh -VIC Premier League), Stefan Vrbesic (Las Palmas, SPAIN), Sam Munro (AIS), Matthew Jurman (Sydney Olympic - NSW Premier League), Thomas Oar (Queensland Roar), Mark Birighitti (gk) (Adelaide United), Nik Tsattalios (Sydney FC), Dane Milanovic (AIS), Daniel Thomas (AIS).
Head Coach: Jan Verslaijen


Podcast: Gary Phillips, Paul Hansford and all the A-League wrap

Nationally we have W-League Jets Coach and Under 17 Australian Women's Coach Gary Phillips, 442Editor Paul Hansford on why they want to talk to Graham Arnold.


Locally we go in-depth with Woden Valley and ACT Rockets star Marcin Zygmunt.


Radio: W-League Coaches, Under 17's lose

Gary Phillips Coach of the Newcastle Jets W-League side will be on the Nearpost show tonight along with 442 Editor Paul Hansford.

Gary Phillips is also Coach of the Under 17 National Women's team which lost to an older Japan side 4-3 in Canberra yesterday.

Phillips was delighted with the result particularly pleased with stand-out performances from Nicola Bolger and Emily Van Egmond.

Although he was pleased with the whole squad he felt it unfair to pick any individual out. "This result against an older Japanese side will give us great confidence for the pre-Asia Cup qualifiers coming up later in the year."

The Japanese side were two years older than our the Aussie under 17's who are all currently 15 as the team build for the next Under 17 World Cup.

The Japanese side will play Australia Under 20's on Wednesday and Friday this week.

Phillips is excited by his dual role and looking forward to the commencement of the W-League.

"Cheryl Salisbury will lead the team and we've got five Matildas from the area. We're looking to bring in players from elsewhere including overseas. We want this league to be as entertaining as possible if it's going to be on TV."

With Nicola Williams the first female announced, she'll take care of Western Australia and the Canberra Coach expected (according to me) to be Robbie Hooker, announced in the next few days. Teams and squads will be put together in a rush in the next fortnight.

All speculation but Alen Stajic is expected to take charge of Sydney FC. Robbie Hooker expected to get the nod in Canberra.

*There are no Canberra players currently in the Under 17 side.


Monday, 25 August 2008

Canberra boys: Do we underachieve?

Ned Zelic, Carl Valeri, Joe Simunic, Peter Buljan, Lindsay Wilson and others, and our A-League Five, Kaz Patafta, Shaun Ontong, Nikolai Topor-Stanley, Adam Casey, and Matty Kemp.. all are professional footballers from Canberra but do we produce enough?

We've got thousands playing at junior level and there is no reason to think this will change.

Football has it's highest ever profile in this country and there is no reason to think this will change in the next twenty years.

And yet the FIVE Canberrans playing professionally in Australia are all products of the AIS.

This begs the question is this the only way a boy can hope to get a professional contract and if so what hope is there for all the boys in Capital Football Academies or indeed in ACTAS who miss out.

From every two year groups with Capital Football only one might earn a contract. Not promising is it?

For each one or two who get through to the AIS, fantastic and hopefully they continue to train and go on to better things.

But does this mean that a 16 or 17 year old Canberran who doesn't make the AIS is doomed to a non-professional career?

And the answer is yes. Exceptions may exist, provide them if you know of any in the last 15 years, but the norm and more says you've got buckleys and none in Canberra if you don't make the AIS.

Boys who get a two year AIS apprenticeship will improve both technically and physically at a superior rate to any player who trains in any other program in Canberra. ACTAS generally provide players for the AIS. Premiership clubs, where most ACTAS boys go after missing the cut at the AIS go nowhere near maintaining never mind improving our young players.

So what's to be done?

Do we accept that 2 or maybe 3 boys will get into the AIS each year and hope to god they are good enough and healthy enough to become professionals. Or can we be doing something more to produce a bigger pool of professional players.

When will we have a Primary School to match Singkok who came for the Kanga Cup from Korean? And impressed everyone with their football prowess. Can't we match their skills.

Of course we can I see Canberrans every week with wonderful skills but not enough time to practice and improve.

When will we have North and South Academies or even Club Academies of the same standard across the city. When will these Academies be attached to our schools with outstanding facilities.

ACTAS should be attached to a school and a partnership be built between ACT Education, Northside and Southside to provide excellence in player facilities and player development.

Why should development be better for just 15 or 16 boys from our player pool when we know that players develop physically and emotionally at different rates. Even these players have to travel so far so often to me it seems we could do it better.

Kofi Danning wasn't in a Capital Football Academy and is now at the AIS. I have no idea whether Kofi's way is the best, only that it shows that we need to provide more opportunities for our boys other than the limited number of Academy places.

Why aren't we thinking about our own High School, our own AIS in some form. We could have 20 players, each year, to match the AIS and maybe aim to get 15 every year into Professional contracts.

There has never been so many contracts either Youth or Professional available in Australia. With more clubs we expect more contracts. But our strategy hasn't changed, not yet.

Canberra FC are the current National Youth League title holders. That should tell you something about the quality of player we can produce and the number.

Our current professional list in good, but we should be aiming to double if not triple the numbers playing professional football from this city.

Afterall our player base has probably tripled since Ned Zelic's days on the local ovals.

Currently players are being locked out from an early age.

If you don't make the AIS, you've pretty much had it in Canberra boys football. Can we change that?

And more importantly how? Incrementally and quick.

Who is working on the plan? Anyone?


Sunday, 24 August 2008

A-League: Goals, Cole, Goals

Shannon Cole scored a superb late free-kick to give Sydney FC an away win in Gosford, and Jade North found the net even later for the Jets in Perth.

Goals everywhere in the opening games.

Shannon Cole scored the winner, he almost did the same the week before against Melbourne. Last week his free kick bounced off the post, this week it went in to seal the win against the Mariners.

Not bad for a 24 year old just starting out in the A-League.

Central Coast Mariners up against ten men must have thought there was only one winner as the clock went down, but it wan't to be.

Stuart Musialik, sent-off, for a crude foul and then verbal abuse of the referee. Seems like Stuey has a few problems, still, to contend with. And it was his debut for Sydney and now he's out. Well done Stuey, top effort. All I can say is you are following in the proud tradition of Sydney FC players getting sent-off because of their lack of professionalism. Alex Brosque, Steve Corica and Ruben Zadkovich just three who come to mind.

The Mariners are missing Mile Jedinak. There is a huge hole in their midfield. The strength the enforcer brings is lacking and the points are falling away.

His replacement Brad Porter gave away two points last week against the Jets. Would Sydney have romped around for their first two if Mile was their? I think not.

Sydney for their part showed what a difference a forward makes. Last season Steve Corica had Alex Brosque in front of him and that was it. Now they have Mark Bridge and the passing between the three will allow more options...for one of the league's best..Corica. Should be interesting to watch as the three develop.

Sydney with a forward line...could be interesting:)

The Mariners worked like Mariners, Ahmed Elrich still no-where near his flamboyant best, and I guess with a pre-season under his belt he never will be.

Adrian Caceres is what eveyone knows, a wonderfully gifted player, but limited to influence games only occasionally. I think Lawrie McKinna bought a dud here. Especially in terms of Championship winning medals. Has Caceres ever had one, or even Ahmad?

The Mariners could struggle for points, for fans this year. They've never been outside the top four and for all their success the crowds could drift if the team aren't performing.

Travelling fans from Sydney and Newcastle inflate the Mariners crowds but last night the game drew only 11,000. How much for a game against Perth if the team are struggling?

And in Perth a raucous crowd saw the Glory win their seventh ever A-League game. Well that is if you don't count the 93rd minute plus 45 seconds. Jade North scored a dire goal to send both teams home with the points. A dire goal from Perth's point of view.

Is it possible to lose such a goal in the last ten seconds in professional football when the ball is in the other keeper's hands? Clearly it is.

I like Amaral Perth's newest and oldest Brazilian. Nice on the ball, a great passer, should be fun to watch.

Eugene Dadi scored and that's more than Brian Deane ever did and he looked able, well able to bring others into the game. Nikita Rukavystya slotted a beauty. A great finish, pity he couldn't do it against Argentina. And local lad Scott Bulloch is going to have a prescene this year. Good to see.

The Jets had James Holland impressing in midfield. Eduardo Zura needs more time and Kaz Patafta came on late.

But like in Melbourne Kaz must be jinxed. The other team always score, or so it seems, as soon as Kaz appears. It wasn't his fault, Tarek Elrich..well let's just say it was his! Anyway a goal always seems to come for the opposition as soon as Kaz enters the fray.

Both games were open affairs, poor tactically I guess and Ernie Merrick would have died for a 0-0. But let's have more, let the flair players do their stuff and the league to encourage 3-3 over 0-0 anyday.

It won't last, Mile Jedinak will return, and Gary Van Egmond may shift Adam Griffiths into centre midfield and bring young Ben Kantorovski in. Stuey Musialik has already gone from the Jets, Gary Van Egmond is missing him or any real defensive midfielder badly in the holding role and The Jets are struggling to win games as a result.

Interestingly Jobe Wheelhouse was dragged in Friday. Is that the end of him?

Perth will be very hard to beat at home, Sydney have shown they are perhaps along with Melbourne the team to beat.

Early days, The Roar and Adelaide have yet to play.

Goals galore and hats off to Shannon Cole. Brilliant stuff.


Friday, 22 August 2008

I Fink he's talking Turkey. Did you gobble it up?

Jesse not finking this week

The thing about blogging is you can write some good stuff, some true stuff, some stuff you make up, and some stuff no-one will believe or think is any good because it probably isn't.

But when you write for a Professional Football site in Australia like our Jesse, "I want Nicky Carle, and Arnie must go", Fink.....every week you are clearly under pressure to write something, anything, that is different from the other columnists and hopefully it stirs the pot. Jesse Fink, of SBS, TheRoar and FoxSports, this week has done just that and it's ordinary innit!

Jesse says:

Hakan Sukur, the Turkish international and Galatasaray gun who nearly single-handedly got his nation to the final of the 2002 World Cup, had been knocked back by both Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory.

Others, like me, argue it was his amazing misses that ensured Turkey never got to the World Cup Final. Has a man ever missed so many sitters in such a crucial game?

That said Sukur was an excellent striker who had clearly passed his best in 2002 just six years ago. He was 30 then, now he's 36, and yes Jesse wants Sukur a striker here at 36!

Like Patrick Kluivert, Romario, and Jardel, and maybe Eugene Dadi, another striker wanting an easy final payday in Australia. Thank God no-one wants Kluivert either.

Sukur is 36! And Jesse I wonder where did he play last year? Serie A, EPL or even Bundesliga?

And no I don't want to see another non-running striker in Australia. Kluivert was finished 8 years ago or so and he's only 32. Suker, Romario, Jardel, Brian Deane, we've had them all and they are all too slow. Even Paul Agostino is giving me concern, but because he's Aussie I'm giving him more time.

Dwight Yorke, only Dwight, who came straight from the Premiership bench, and went back to the midfield via the World Cup and yes he too had lost his pace but he could adapt, he had skill, a football brain and he worked hard to make the thing happen.

No Jesse, Fink again and again. Not one of your finer blogs.

36 might seem young to you Jesse but unless they are some ball mastering midfielder who can control the tempo, has sublime skill, you can stick your overaged has-beens up your typepad. And give dear old Sydney a chance to get some credibility.

For God Sake Sydney already got one injured ageing star in John Aloisi make that two with Tony Popovich how many more do they need?

And for Sukur nearly single-handedly taking Turkey to the World Cup Final, Jesse mate you're talking Turkey.

Now how about writing a blog on the Canberra A-League team and why it would be good for Australia.

Come on that should fire a few more critics:)


ACT Boys head to Japan, Sydney sign Canberra Youth

Dane Milovanovic, Sam Munro from the ACT are in the Young Socceroos squad currently in Japan with new AIS Dutch Coach Jens Verslaijen. See squad/games below.

And Merryn Sherwood from Canberra Times has all the news on the first Canberra boys to sign A-League Youth contracts.

And the Under 17 Aussie Women match/squad details are below

SBS Cup (Shizuoka Broadcasting System)
Location: Shizuoka City, Japan
* Saturday 23 August, Australia v Japan
* Sunday 24 August, Australia v Shizuoka Province
* Tuesday 26 August, Australia v Argentina

Qantas Young Socceroos Squad. 1. Andrew Redmayne (GK) - Central Coast; 2. Sebastian Ryall - Melbourne Victory; 3. Nathan Elasi - Melbourne Victory; 4. Luke De Vere - QLD Roar; 5. Mitchell Nichols - QLD Roar; 6. Tahj Minniecon - QLD Roar; 7. Jason Hoffman - Newcastle Jets; 8. Jason Naidovski - Newcastle Jets; 9. Daniel Mullen - Adelaide United; 10. Milos Lujic - Oakleigh (VIC Premier League); 11. Stefan Vrbesic - Las Palmas, SPAIN; 12. Sam Munro – AIS; 13. Matthew Jurman - Sydney Olympic, NSW Premier League; 14. Thomas Oar - QLD Roar; 15. Mark Birighitti (GK) - Adelaide United; 16. Niko Tsattalios - Sydney FC; 17. Dane Milanovic - AIS; 18. Daniel Thomas (AIS).

Coach: Jan Verslaijen

Women’s Training Camp
Location: Australian Institute of Sport, Canberra.

* Monday 25 August, 11.00am - Australia U17 Women v Japan U19 Women

U17 Women’s Squad. Alice Wellingham (QLD), Alix Roberts (Country NSW), Amy Higgins (QLD) Ashley Brown (VIC), Brittany Whitfield (QLD), Caitlin Foord (NSW), Courtney Miller (NNSW), Elizabeth Grey (NSW), Emily Van Egmond (NNSW), Erika Elze (QLD), Hannah Brewer (NSW), Heidi Makrillos (NSW), Jesse Wharepouri (NSW), Mikaela Hatzirodos (QLD), Nicola Bolger (NSW), Nicole Calder (SA), Rebecca Bennett (WA), Rebekah Stott (QLD), Sadie Lawrence (WA), Sally Thurston (QLD), Sam Kerr (WA), Tara Andrews (NNSW), Teigen Allen (NSW), Stephanie Catley (VIC).

Coach: Gary Phillips

And from the Canberra Times, Merry Sherwoord reports:

A little under 12 months ago Kofi Danning was running around in Capital Football's premier league for the O'Connor Knights.

But at the end of next month the 17-year-old striker will complete a remarkable rise when he lines up for Sydney FC's youth team in the new national youth league.

A-League team Sydney FC has signed two Canberra players, Danning and Sam Munro, 18, for its inaugural season in the national youth league. Both Danning and Munro have been with the AIS team for the past year, but Danning only started a full scholarship this year.

After playing for Canberra FC and then the O'Connor Knights in the ACT premier league, Danning was invited to train with the AIS squad last year and impressed then coach Steve O'Connor and now current coach Ray Junna enough to claim a full scholarship.

Now Sydney FC youth coach, O'Connor was quick to snap up the Ghana-born Danning for the youth league team making the transition from ACT premier league to Sydney FC in around a year.

''He's certainly got potential,'' O'Connor said.

''He's very athletic, he's very quick and can play with both feet. He still has work to do in the fine technical points of the game and can better his technique in areas but they are all things you can keep working on.

''If he is serious about his game he can make an impact.''

Munro who was born in Sydney but has been in Canberra as part of the Capital Football Academy and ACTAS programs for the past few years - is currently overseas with the Young Socceroos team in Japan. Fellow Canberran AIS scholarship-holder Dane Milovanovic is also in the squad.

''They are both good players and they both have potential,'' O'Connor said. ''I obviously had them for some time when I was down there, and I wanted to give them the opportunity to play in the youth league.''

O'Connor said he expected both Munro and Danning to play important roles in Sydney FC's youth team. Danning will fly in for each game and remain with the AIS for another year while Munro is likely to move to Sydney.

The national youth league will start on the last weekend of September


W-League: It is coming...honest!

W-League is coming even if things have gone a tad quiet. I'm expecting the TV Deal with the ABC to be announced next Thursday...and..

in Canberra I'm expecting the Coach to be announced next week.

There have been a number of applicants, interviews were held last week, so an announcement any day soon.

Sydney FC are starting their trials the first week of September so Canberra is hardly behind, and I've only heard of one Coach, Adelaide United's Mike Barnett been appointed so far.

Wonder if we'll see any women in the roles. I doubt if given the criteria required to be able to coach.

Interestingly the difference in Selection Criteria between Canberra United and Sydney FC was astonishing. The level of detail in the Canberra application perhaps reflecting the bureaucratic town we live in:)

And I would expect Canberra United to need to attract a few out of town players to make us competitive with Sydney and Queensland Roar FC.

That said if the local players are good enough, and many will be, it would be great to have a complete team from the Capital and the Region.

But this team is not a Federation team so positions are open to all, from anywhere.


Ivan Slavich: Update on A-League bid.

Ivan has sent a message to Foundation Message. I'm one so I got the email. But the update is in full below.

Dear Foundation Member

Wow! What an amazing few weeks we have had in regards to the A-League4Canberra bid. Firstly I must say thank you for signing up to become a Foundation Member, we are certainly on our way to achieving the goal of bringing an A-League team to Canberra.

I would like to present to you a few dot points on what has been achieved so far and what is still required:

Website up and running

Meeting with Football Federation Australia (FFA) to discuss Canberra’s bid

Ambassador program instigated by Eamonn Flanagan (ambassadors to sign up 10 members and each of those 10 sign up another 1 member)

ACT Government support with a $2.5m commitment (plus ongoing support)

Discussions with very keen investors ongoing and progressing well
Foundation members signed up to date is 548 and still climbing daily

Still in progress/required:

Foundation membership - we need your help to acquire the 5000 foundation members - to show FFA that Canberra is serious about having an A-League team of our own! Help us spread the word
TV Advertisement

Also just a reminder for the great benefits of becoming a foundation member is:

Numbered certificate recognising foundation membership
Discounted season tickets
Free entry to ACT Premier League games for 5 years
Free entry to ACT W - League competition for next 5 years
A say in the club at Board level

Kind regards,
Ivan Slavich


Thursday, 21 August 2008

Chief Minister a Foundation Member

Jon Stanhope, Leader of the ACT Government has become an official Foundation Member. Here's what he'll get.

recognition on the official A-League4Canberra site (if you choose)
reduced season tickets
free entry into all ACT Premier league games for the next 5 years
free entry to the newly established women's W-League Canberra team, Canberra
United for the next FIVE years.
membership certificate identifying you as a foundation member
a say in the club at Board level

Oh and he gets a I reckon that's not bad for $200.


Under 17 Matildas in Camp

List below: But no Canberra girls in this one. The team play Japan on Monday. And the Young Matildas are in camp next week with a Bronwyn Studman, Chrissy Walters, Rebecca Kiting expected to be joined by one possible two others from the ACT.

The Young Matildas will take on Japan on Wednesday and Friday next week.

P Teigan Allen
P Tara Andrews
P Rebecca Bennette
P Nicola Bolger
P Hannah Brewer
P Ashley Brown
P Nicole Calder
P Brianna Davey
P Erika Elze
P Caitlan Foord
P Elizabeth Grey
P Michaela Hatzirodos
P Amy Higgins
P Samantha Kerr
P Sadie Lawrence
P Heidi Makrillos
P Courtney Miller
P Alix Roberts
P Rebekah Stott
P Sally Thurston
P Emily van Egmond
P Alice Wellingham
P Jesse Wharepouri
P Brittany Whitfield

* TBC - Ruth Wallace Adelaide


Mario Jardel is back

but this time he's Scottish and he's playing for Queensland Roar.

Charlie Miller is doing his best to impersonate Mario Jardel. He's got the whole belly thing off pat.

Even wears the shirt the same.

He looks like he's come from a Scottish pub just before the game, but he did play in the 3 degree Summer A-League kick-off game for the Roar in Wellington.

At one point he motioned to the bench about being too cold, or maybe thirsty or maybe too hot. After all he'd done 30 minutes or so by then.

He strolled nicely into forward areas, but unlike Jardel he scored. Admittedly it was just after half time when he'd had a long long rest.

Nice touches undoubtedly but will he last the distance. 30 degrees in Brisbane, I'm not sure he liked 3 degrees in Wellington.

He's got M and M's for pitch comfort. Massimo Murdocha and Matty McKay are going to just love running all day for Charlie.

Dwight Yorke never played a pre-season game, Juninho took ages to get fit, Jardel remained fat, Romario never moved, even Stan Lazaridis, Ljubo Milicevic, Carlos Hernandez all took a while to get going. John Aloisi injured, Paul Agostino has hardly played.

Anyone ever get the impression we're been taking for a ride.

Charlie Miller? He's got to be a huge gamble at best. And of course he's a mate of Craig Moore's. Good luck Charlie you've proved me wrong so far but if you wobble off injured, can't sustain the pace, or just fall in a heap expect no sympathy from me.

It's a professional game and it's about time players coming here arrived in shape.


Canberra A-League: $4.5 million plus 500 members already

We need $6 million we've already got $4.5 million and over 530 Foundation Members. All in a few weeks. A fantastic effort from Ivan Slavich and the whole community. Have we ever been so close?

Just one more investor and further Foundation Memberships can get us to the inital goal of $6 million. Not bad for a bid just starting to roll.

And remember the Mariners started Season 1 with 600 members, and we've got two years to go!

Ivan Slavich said this week on Nearpost Radio there were 4 bids from Melbourne, 2 from Sydney, 1 from Tasmania and 1 from Wollongong for the two remaining spots..assuming Townsville join the Gold Coast next year.

I say assume nothing. With Melbourne divided, Sydney FC wanting an extension on a moratorium, Tassie unlikely to get the finances and the Gong talking Youth teams first, with the Government support in the ACT we are sending a strong message to other investors. Get in now, says Ivan, or you may miss out!!


Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Mark Bosnich is back: It's official

Bosnich earns seven round stay with Mariners

Bosnich earns seven round stay with Mariners

The Central Coast Mariners today confirmed that Qantas Socceroo icon Mark Bosnich will be welcomed to the Mariners’ playing roster for seven rounds of the Hyundai A-League 2008/09 season as the Mariners’ first ever guest player.

Bosnich has been on trial with the reigning Hyundai A-League Premiers for the past month and having satisfied the club of his ability to contribute positively to the Mariners’ season four charge, has been invited to make an impression on Australia’s top flight football competition for the first time since December 1991.

Surely the greatest name to have ever been introduced to the Hyundai A-League since the competitions inception, Bosnich is one of Australia’s most identifiable sportspeople by virtue of his amazing international and domestic career that blazed a trial for Australia’s aspirant football professionals.

One of a very exclusive club of Australians to have won an English Premier League Championship medal and once widely acknowledged as the best goalkeeper in world football, Bosnich’s CV reads as well as any player to have ever worn the green and gold of Australia.

Bosnich is eligible for selection for the Mariners’ opening home match of the Hyundai A-League 2008/09 season against Sydney FC this coming Saturday and will then be considered for the Mariners’ subsequent Hyundai A-League fixtures from Round 3 through to Round 8.

During this time, Bosnich will potentially make as many as four appearances at Bluetongue Stadium and a further three more across Australia and New Zealand.

"We are delighted to today announce that one of the greats of Australian football is a Central Coast Mariner," said Mariners Executive Chairman Lyall Gorman.

"Since joining us as a triallist, Mark has proven to be an exceptional role model for not only the younger members of our playing group, but also our senior players and I have every confidence that by Mark continuing his stay with us in the capacity of a guest player, we have significantly boosted our aspirations on and off the pitch for the current season.

"We as a club have been simply amazed by the work ethic Mark has showcased since joining our playing group and cannot speak highly enough of the overwhelmingly positive effect his presence has had on our squad and our club.

"It has been a feature of our recruitment history to repatriate Australia’s finest football exports and with Mark on board, we have continued this tradition and very happily and willingly provided a well deserved opportunity for one of the greats of the Australian game to contribute to this most exciting time for football in this country."

Bosnich’s rare talents were first truly discovered and recognised by Australian audiences in the early to mid-nineties, when in his early twenties, Bosnich inspired English Premier League challengers Aston Villa to the their two greatest domestic triumphs of the past decade – the 1994 and 1996 English League Cup trophies.

At the semi final stage of the 1994 edition, Bosnich was the hero for the Birmingham side when saving three penalties to help Aston Villa to a 5-4 penalty shootout triumph over Tranmere Rovers, which secured the club a shot at Manchester United, who they then defeated 3-1 in the final.

This performance, coupled with many standout showings in the English Premier League, made Bosnich an instant fans favourite at Villa Park and an overnight celebrity throughout the United Kingdom as an Australian excelling in England’s top flight, which at this time was somewhat of a novelty.

Bosnich replicated his form with Aston Villa at international level, where he was a standout for Australia in their quest for qualification for the 1994 and 1998 FIFA World Cups in the United States and France respectively – even netting a rare goalkeepers goal for the Qantas Socceroos from the penalty spot against the Solomon Islands in 1997.

Following Australia’s near miss of qualification for France, Bosnich secured a high profile move to world football giants Manchester United, who installed Bosnich as the successor to club legend and fellow goalkeeping luminary Peter Schmeichel.

While at Old Trafford, Bosnich claimed some more exclusive silverware – the 1999/00 English Premier League Championship and the 1999 Intercontinental Cup, where Bosnich was a standout for the Red Devils in their 1-0 defeat of Brazilian side Pameiras.

Most recently, Bosnich turned in an exceptional performance for the Mariners in their 3-0 Pre-Season Cup triumph over Sydney FC at Bluetongue Stadium, before extending his clean sheet to a half-hour cameo appearance off the bench against the Queensland Roar at Brisbane’s Perry Park in the same competition.

40. Mark Bosnich

Date of Birth 13 January 1972
Position Goalkeeper

Domestic History
2002/03 – Chelsea (England, Premier League); 0 appearances
2001/02 – Chelsea (England, Premier League); 5 appearances
2000/01 – Chelsea (England, Premier League); 0 appearances
2000/01 – Manchester United (England, Premier League); 0 appearances
1999/00 – Manchester United (England, Premier League); 23 appearances
1998/99 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 15 appearances
1997/98 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 30 appearances
1996/97 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 20 appearances
1995/96 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 38 appearances
1994/95 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 30 appearances
1993/94 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 28 appearances
1992/93 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 17 appearances
1991/92 – Aston Villa (England, Premier League); 1 appearance
1991/92 – Sydney United (Australia, National Soccer League); 5 appearances
1990/91 – Manchester United (England, Division 1); 2 appearances
1989/90 – Manchester United (England, Division 1); 1 appearance
1988/99 – Sydney United (Australia, National Soccer League); 0 appearances

International History (Qantas Socceroos)
2000 – Hungary
1997 – FYR Macedonia, Solomon Islands, Tahiti, New Zealand, New Zealand, Iran, Iran, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Uruguay, Brazil
1996 – Scotland, Chile
1993 – New Zealand, New Zealand, Argentina

International History (Qantas Under 23’s)
1992 – Kuwait, Mexico, Denmark, Sweden, Poland
1991 – Fiji

The Mariners’ Hyundai A-League 2008/09 campaign continues at their Bluetongue Stadium home this Saturday, 23 August, when they host southern rivals Sydney FC. Kick off is at 7pm.


Socceroos draw, Bosnich back today

Socceroos drew 2-2 with South Africa (read FFA report below) and I'm expecting Mark Bosnich to be announced as a Central Coast Mariners player today. Isn't that fantastic. A-League entertainment factor about to go through the roof. Welcome back Bozza!

The Qantas Socceroos have drawn with South Africa 2-all in an enthralling match at Loftus Road Stadium in London tonight.

South Africa took the lead in the 21st minute when Siyabonga Nkosi finished well after being set-up by a Benni McCarthy back-heel at the edge of the box. The Qantas Socceroos equalised four minutes later when Vincenzo Grella lobbed a ball to Mile Sterjovski who volleyed over the advancing South African goal keeper Itumeleng Khune.

The Qantas Socceroos took the lead in the 38th minute when striker Josh Kennedy headed home a perfectly placed Mark Bresciano free kick.

At the half time break, Qantas Socceroos head coach made a number of changes with Lucas Neill, Scott Chipperfield and Scott McDonald making way for Mark Milligan, David Carney and Brett Holman respectively.

The second half began at the same frenetic pace as the first with both teams trading goal scoring opportunities.

South Africa equalised just before the hour mark when Teko Modise hit a stinging shot from inside the Australian penalty box past the near post of Qantas Socceroos goal keeper Mark Schwarzer.

Soon after, Verbeek made two more changes with Vincenzo Grella replaced by Carl Valeri and Mile Sterjovski replaced by Richard Garcia who was on debut and became the 519th Qantas Socceroo in the process.

Bruce Djite made an appearance for the Qantas Socceroos in the 73rd minute replacing Josh Kennedy and had a great opportunity to score close to the final whistle, but unfortunately was unable to find the back of the net.

After the match, Pim Verbeek was pleased with the overall performance of his players.

"When we had the ball I thought we played very well," Verbeek said.

"Defensively we gave some chances away. I was not so pleased with that but that's normal - we had one day 's preparation.

"Overall I was very pleased with the performance. The boys looked fresh and sharp,” concluded Verbeek.

The Qantas Socceroos will now prepare for the 2010 FIFA World Cup Asian Qualifiers v Round 4 with an international friendly against the Netherlands in Eindhoven on Saturday 6 September, before their qualification match against Uzbekistan in Tashkent on Wednesday 10 September.


Match Details
Qantas Socceroos 2 (Mile Sterjovski 25’, Josh Kennedy 38’)
South Africa 2 (Siyabonga Nkosi 21’, Teko Modise 58’)
Tuesday 19 August 2008
Loftus Road Stadium, London, England
Referee: Mr Howard Webb (England)
Assistant Referees: Mr Dave Richardson (England) & Mr Peter Kirkup (England)
Fourth Official: Mr Andre Marriner (England)

Qantas Socceroos: 1.Mark SCHWARZER (gk), 2.Lucas NEILL (c)( 4.Mark MILLIGAN 46’), 3.Scott CHIPPERFIELD (11.David CARNEY 46’), 5.Jason CULINA, 7.Scott McDONALD (10.Brett HOLMAN 46’), 8.Luke WILKSHIRE, 9.Joshua KENNEDY (12.Bruce DJITE 73’), 13.Vincenzo GRELLA (14.Carl VALERI 62’), 16.Chris COYNE, 21.Mile STERJOVSKI (20.Richard GARCIA 62’), 23.Mark BRESCIANO.

Substitutes Not Used: 6.Matthew SPIRANOVIC, 18.Michael PETKOVIC (gk), 19.Nick CARLE.

Yellow Cards: Chris Coyne 87’.

Red Cards: Nil

South Africa: 16.Itumeleng KHUNE (gk), 3.Bradley CARNELL, 4.Aaron MOKOENA, 5.Nassief MORRIS, 6.Macbeth SIBAYA, 8.Siphiwe TSHABALALA (9.Surprise MORIRI 66’), 10.Teko MODISE, 17.Benedict McCARTHY (11.Lefa TSUTSULUPA 73’), 18.Siyabonga NKOSI (15.Sibusiso ZUMA 65’), 20.Bryce MOON, 21.Kagisho DIKGACOI (7.Lance DAVIDS 78’).

Substitutes Not Used: 1.Moeneeb JOSEPHS (gk), 13.Bongani KHUMALO, 23.Nazeer ALLIE, 19.Bevan FRANSMAN, 22.Innocent MDLEDLE, 12.Thulasizwe MBUYANE, 14.Matthew PATTISON, 24.Dean FURMAN.

Yellow Cards: Aaron Mokoena 7’, Benedict McCarthy 30’.

Red Cards: Nil


Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Get your favourite Small Business on board

Corporate, Small and Large business can now show their support for Canberra's A-League bid. They get a Foundation Membership and their name and logo on the website. So why not encourage your favourite small business to sign up. They can keep the membership, donate it to charity or an employee whatever they like.


Monday, 18 August 2008

Matildas mobbed at Majura SC

Can you spot the Matildas in the photo and not just the Wannabee's

Wannabee's Matildas flocked to show their skills to World Cup hero Caitlin Munoz and Asian Cup star Amy Chapman on a cold Friday night at Dickson Oval.

The usual training session was taken by not one, but two, of Australia's star players.

Amy Chapman and Caitlin Munoz gave up their time to duck down to show the girls a few tricks before dashing off to their own training session. And the girls, parents and Coaches loved it

Shirts, balls, socks indeed everything was signed as the young Majura players took advantage of having a couple of Australia's finest in their presence.

Majura Under 12, Under 10 and Under 8 girls sides all showed their stuff.

With the W-League kicking off in October and Canberra United about to appoint their Coach a clear pathway for all our junior players is now clear.

And you can expect our junior talent to become even more familiar with our Matildas and National League Squad as it is selected over the coming weeks.

"My daughters' still bouncing around the house from last night. She was so excited to have a couple of Matildas at her training session," said a Majura Lightning Under 10 Parent on Saturday.

And did the training help. One team drew and one team got thumped 4-0 but it's not about winning is it, aske Arnie:) So yes the training helped!


Nearpost Radio this week

Australia's first W-League Coach, Mike Barnett, A-League bid leader Ivan Slavich..

Download National Show or right click and show will open and play in another screen......eventually.

We hear from the first W-League appointed Coach Adelaide United's Mike Barnett

Local Show Download: or right click and show will open and play in another screen......eventually.

Get the latest from Ivan Slavich on the Canberra A-League bid.

Australia's first W-League Coach Mike Barnett is Adelaide United's first W-League Coach. Mike talks Salary Cap, player selections, why United will be competitive and the challenge ahead.

Interestingly will there be any female coaches or female Assistants in the new W-league?

We hear from John Kosmina and Lawrie McKinna on the weekend games.

Locally Chris Gottaas has all the latest from Ivan Slavich on the Canberra A-League bid.

Russ Gibbs and Chris Gottaas talks football!


Canberra A-League : More money rolls in.

Canberra A-League bid update. Money, support and your help?

Last week the ACT Goverment put in $2.5 million and this week I'm expecting sponsor announcements. At least THREE possibly Four Gold Sponsors already lined up so expect news later in the week. One is rumoured to be for half a millon dollars!

Fox Sports Simon Hill.....
Andy Harper and SBS Craig Foster, Sun Herald's Matthew Hall have all been in contact and are very enthusiastic to hear a team from the Capital is being planned, and so far advanced in such a short time......and Canberrans are taking up the challenge as well.

Andrew Barr, ACT Government has joined up and of course tipped in $2.5 million as of last Friday.

Kate Lundy, Zed Seselja are onboard showing it's clearly a bid for the City. Bill Stefaniak has ideas to attract more members.

Offers of support flood in from across the Canberra Community. From Cam Tully, from the Tulley band and from one of Canberra's oldest families, Mark Parton Canberra Radio legend and Ben Sakker Kelly.

Claudio Cecchini, Nicole Somi, and Ned Zelic have all offered support.

Leaflet letter drops, we need volunteers, Gala dinners, poster runs, stalls at Clubs, and "Face of the Bid" have all been muted. Great stuff.

Let's keep the momentum going and let me know if you can take on a small or large venture on behalf of the bid. Every bit helps.


God help the Kiwi's

Now I love my Yellow Fever fans but the second year in and someone has to help them out....Ricky Herbert is the

New Zealand equivalent to Graham Arnold. It's tedious, deadly to watch and I hold little hope for the season for our loud yellow fans.

Of course they'll be bottom.

Did you see how they played at home, against a Scottish midfielder Charlie Miller who looked like he'd just rocked out of a Scottish pub. He's living at Craig Moore's house apparently, should that read The Moore and Miller local?

Anyhoo, The Yellow Army, god bless em, loud and vocal in the rain willing their team despite another dire season ahead.

And they drew their first game! How did this happen? With the ball missing the midfield on many occasions and little in the way of forward link players. The crosses were dire and I had to turn it off, I couldn't take it.

In Leo Bertos, Adam Kwasnik, Daniel and the free scoring Shane Smeltz they've got some bits of talent sometime, but no-one all the time.

And it's painful to see one Dodd on the park but two, I had to turn it off. The A-League should make a rule against it.

And Ricky Herbert if anyone in any of the football fraternity, football media EVER tell me what a great coach he baloney.

Where is the evidence? I can produce a team of plodders and make them plod. He even makes the Brazilians look like plodders.

He's recruited well in Andrew Durante and Jon Mckain and Glen Moss will earn his money more than most keepers, but where is the football going to come from.

It is going to be painful.

The Phoenix reckon yesterdays game was "Dour" isn't it always from any New Zealand team.

When did an NZ side ever play with any flair, indeed not since Winton Rufus or some of the great All Blacks sides has a Kiwi team kept me watching.

Even the All Blacks are woeful these days:)

So Ricky good luck to yer, but you may as well come last playing football than last with the sort of stuff we saw yesterday.

It can only get better, of course, but I'm expecting you to get flogged on away trips as you hoof it up the field and hang on with what seems to be a much-improved defence.

The Yellow Fever fans are going to need to keep singing as at the moment they are more entertaining than the home side will ever be!


Sunday, 17 August 2008

Canberran lights up A-League

Great to see former Belconnen junior Adam Casey playing for Sydney FC last night...

And didn't he shine particularly in the first half. Adam is back from a long-term injury but has pace to burn.

It's a fantastic asset and he caused Melbourne Victory a heap of problems last night in Sydney's season opener.

Any player with that amount of pace is going to cause problems. Casey had an extended run last season under Branko Culina, scored a goal and was really starting to make an impact.

Well a severe injury halted his progress, and he's back and in the starting line-up under Coach John Kosmina.

Good to see, and will be interesting to see how Adam progresses under Kosmina.

Casey could be in line for a great season. I'll keep you posted. And isn't it great to see an Aussie with genuine pace?


Friday, 15 August 2008

Do you want a team in Canberra?

Canberran football fans hold the key. If we get the 5000 Foundation Members we're in.

Has it ever been more simple, it's up to us, our mates, and their mates.

Do we want a team in Canberra?


ACT Government $2.5 million for A-League side

The ACT Government has announced a multi-million dollar deal for the Canberra A-League side this morning. See Press Release details below.

$2.5 million. We need $6 million and a strong supporter base to get in. With a number of investors already on board we just need to prove to the FFA we have 5000 Foundation Members. Sign up now and get that team!

The Bid goes in the end of August.

Canberra’s A-League goal gets a kick along

The Stanhope Labor Government will provide $2.5 million to help establish an A-League football team in Canberra.

The funding will assist the bid to have a Canberra team competing in the Hyundai A-League commencing in the 2010-11 season.

Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation Andrew Barr joined Canberra A-League bid leader Ivan Slavich and Capital Football Chief Executive Heather Reid at Canberra Stadium to make the announcement.

“The Stanhope Labor Government is committed to building better cities and stronger communities,” Mr Barr said.

“A successful A-League team will add to the sporting life of Canberra, providing locals with more top-quality sporting entertainment and providing visitors with even more reasons to come to Canberra.

“I am pleased to announce the Stanhope Labor Government will provide $2.5 million to help a new ALeague club meet Football Federation of Australia (FFA) financial requirements if Canberra’s A-League bid is successful. This funding will be crucial to ensuring a successful bid actually delivers a Canberra A-League team.

“A Canberra A-League club will be a win for soccer fans and a win for the ACT economy. We know from experience that the Raiders, Brumbies and Capitals all raise the profile of Canberra through the media nationally and attract visitors to games in the Territory. We also know that having access to elite sporting matches locally inspires young Canberrans in particular to get into sport and live more active and healthy lives.”

Mr Barr said thousands of Canberrans have proven their support for the A-League through playing the game and attending matches.

“The fact we have more than 17,000 registered football players in the ACT and such large crowds at ALeague games like the recent clash between the Central Coast Mariners and the Newcastle Jets shows Canberrans are great supporters of the A-League and would love to have their own team."

For further details on the A-League Bid or to become a foundation member visit:


FFA: Canberra bid impresses but fans hold the key

The Ivan Slavich led Canberra A-League has impressed the FFA when the bid team and FFA met yesterday. FFA CEO Ben Buckley was impressed with the speed and quality of the Canberra bid's progress. We're clearly in with a chance.

The need to show a fanbase is clearly urgent. Getting 5000 Foundation Memberships is the challenge for everyone who has signed up, everyone who has ever wanted a team, everyone who loves the game, professional sport and the City and Region.

To get a team in Canberra/Region: The challenge has never been so clear or simple.

Can you help by signing up for a Foundation Membership ($200) and encouraging others to do the same?


Matildas Stars at Majura tonight

Matildas Star: Amy Chapman in action

Matildas Stars Caitlin Munoz and Amy Chapman will be taking a number of Majura girls teams through their paces at training tonight.

And it's great to see the stars giving their time to our future players. And unlike the men they don't have a full time salary from football, so it's an extra effort for these players.

And of course with all the build up to the W-League about to start I'm sure the young girls will have a heap of fun with Caitlin and Amy.

To get a photo or autograph jog along to Dickson Oval just before 4.30pm.


Thursday, 14 August 2008

A-League kicks off: Canberrans ready to go.

Kaz Patafta, Matty Kemp and Adam Casey are all in their clubs respective clubs squads for the opening round. Olyroo Nikolai Topor-Stanley may well turn out for Perth Glory on Sunday.

Shaun Ontong is out indefinitely with a dodgy ankle and Ben Wilson will be an Assistant Referee and Ben Williams will control the game in New Zealand and Craig Moore is suspended already:) along with Alex Brosque and a heap of others.

Good to have the football back.


The Olyroos: Where was the Magic?

Nearpost Host Russ Gibbs asks the question.....

The Olyroos: Where was the Magic?

By Russ Gibbs

So, that’s that then. After building it up for several months in advance the Australian Olympic team have bowed out of the Beijing Games with barely a whimper having picked up a solitary point from their three group matches.

In an admittedly testing group a 1-1 draw with Serbia, and back-to-back 0-1 defeats to both Argentina and the Ivory Coast was scant reward from a campaign that supposedly promised much. But, in reality, did it?

The selection of the squad was the bane of contention for many with the omission of Bruce Djite and Nathan Burns remarkable, even more so considering the abject display put in by the forwards actually sent to China. It reached ludicrous proportions when Archie Thompson was ruled out of the final group game through injury and an SOS had to be sent to Central Coast Lightening target man Matt Simon.

Okay, you can’t legislate for injuries, but surely selecting more than two recognised out-and-out forwards in the squad would have been a good start. However, the stark truth is that this Australian squad simply did not have the talent in the final third to worry most teams.

The Olyroos showed ample grit and determination and flooded the defence whenever the opposition had possession, harrying and closing down and generally making a nuisance of themselves in the fine Australian tradition. The Socceroos showed similar qualities in the World Cup and the Asian Championships with moderate success. The question is though what did they do when they had the ball? Not a lot is the answer.

Too often hopeful long balls from the back were comfortably dealt with and returned with a vengeance. Indeed, if it hadn’t been for the heroics of goalkeeper Adam Federici all three matches could have ended in heavy defeats.

Where was the spark of creativity in midfield? Where was the moment of magic in the attacking third? Sadly absent and with no clue as to when and how it can be found. Thinking back on the three matches you can barely remember Australia having a shot on goal, let alone testing the opposition goalkeeper.

In the first game Serbia dominated and the Olyroos got lucky through a scrappy Ruben Zadkovich strike. Against Argentina the South Americans shot-stopper was a mere spectator and, in the crunch tie with the Ivory Coast, there was hardly a meaningful effort on goal.

How can this be rectified? There appears to be a real lack of natural finishers throughout the A-League with teams happy for their main strikers to drop deep and help create rather than ply their trade around the penalty box, as Damien Mori did to deadly effect for many years. And further back the midfield maestro we all crave to carve open locked defences is also a rare breed.

The onus thus is on the coaches to create two-footed players who are comfortable in possession and composed when presented with a chance in front of goal. A player of the calibre of Nick Carle would have been a massive boost to Australian chances of medalling at the Games. As it is we are left with few positive memories of a tournament that could have provided a rare glimpse of international success.

One final note: it was refreshing to sit through ninety minutes of Olympic football with no breaks as SBS showed LIVE the Australia v Ivory Coast clash. David Basheer did a good job with the commentary and the coverage was a credit to the station. Compare that to the hodge-podge job that Prime (Channel Seven) are dishing up.

For everyone’s sake Channel Seven here’s some tips:
1. Pick a Sport (anyone will do for starter).
2. Show it to its conclusion (not half an event here and we’ll come back to that later after more swimming).
3. Employ commentators who know the sport and can talk meaningfully about it.
4. Don’t go for an advert when an event is running – try natural breaks they do exist!
5. Remember that you are not covering rugby union.
Hopefully, that will help……..


Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Aussies out of Under 23 World Cup

Australia went out of the Olympics tonight. They lost 1-0 in Tianjin to the Ivory Coast.

And whilst they gave perhaps their best performance of the tournament they never really looked convincing in the the final third, not tonight, or indeed in the whole tournament.

They told us they were a great group of players, battle hardened having qualified through Asia.

And qualifying through Asia was indeed a great achievement it was how they qualified that lead many of us to believe they would struggle to get out of the group, the group of death. Funny how we're always in the group of death!

Free-kicks and headed or even handled goals got the team over the line in the qualifiers. No-one was complaining but when the source of headed goals from free-kicks and corners dried up we had little else.

We lost our three warm-up games, scored only one goal in this tournament and in the end the results don't lie.

Ned Zelic, Mark Viduka, their clones weren't present in Chinaor were they?

But Adam Federici and Matthew Spiranovic were superb. Of Zelic, Viduka standard? Albeit in different positions. Jade North showed his quality again

But Coach Graham Arnold playing two central defenders in front of the back four was never convinced this team could play. Not in a forward sense.

The team created enough chances in all games but couldn't convert.

Defensively we did okay but ultimately that feeling that our forward play and movement, our next attacking generation of players are just not there.

In truth it was depressing. Watching teams without a cutting thrust is hard work. When it's your national team it verges on despairing.

Bruce Djite and Nathan Burns would add something but they are hardly Lionel Messi just yet.

Billy Celeski showed promise, but again lacked real confidence in the final third.

Stuart Musialik took a step forward. But it's in the final third, the Nicky Carle position, and the striker role, where all Australian teams are limited at present.

I enjoyed the first sixty minutes then we seemed to run out of steam and you realised we would never score no matter how many chances we had.

Arnie will be lynched. He doesn't need to be. He got this group of players to the Olympics. Maybe they and he overachieved.

But we're left with a neat footballing defensive unit but with hardly a player able to take anyone one in the final third. No pace, Nikita apart, and not a goalscorer at this level in the squad.

It's not all least we don't have to watch the lads anymore.

And it could have been worse, it could have been on Channel 7.

Australian football has a long way to go. To produce exciting players. We need to find another way.

Great defensive midfielders. Pah, I want a winger, a striker who can score, a Number 10 who gets me out of my seat with a simple but delightful through or linking ball.

How long will I have to wait?


TV Ad: Canberra A-League

Signed up yet? Do you want a team in Canberra? If the answer is yes, you know what to do:)


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Carl Valeri: Will he move to Serie A?

Carl Valeri on the move? Update from SBS here


Mariners tragic becomes Canberra Foundation Member

Graeme MacKinnon, Foundation Member 412, is a "mad Mariners supporter" but he's laid out his hard-earned cash to show his support for a team from Australia's Capital.

Thanks for your support Graeme hope the Mariners win the opener against the Jets.

Interesting the link between the Mariners and A-League in Canberra.

Two bus loads went from Gungahlin to watch the recent Mark Bosnich/Mariners pre-season game against Sydney in Gosford.That's over 100 people. How many would go for a Canberra team?

Keep encouraging your friends, work colleagues and football players to become Foundation Members. This is a great opportunity for football in Canberra and the region.


Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Ed Hollis Tottenham Physio goes Nearpost.

Nearpost National Show:

Ed Hollis talks about his Tottenham day job.
We preview the A-League, talk Olyroos and update on the Canberra A-League bid.


Woden Valley's Ed Hollis, Rachael Harrigan, Kadee Hollis and Amy McCloughlin talk Dane Cup, and their trip of a lifetime.

Ivan Slavich gives an update on the Canberra A-League bid as he heads off to meet the FFA.


Canberra A-League Coach?

Canberra A-League Ambassador Aaron Walker gives the lowdown "Who will be our Canberra A-League Coach." Great stuff, feel free to add your views.

With Canberra’s A-League bid rapidly gathering momentum, I thought I’d address the big question of who are the most likely candidates for the coaching position?

I have gone through and outlined the pros and cons of a few likely contenders.

Graham Arnold

Pros: Should Arnold leave the FFA coaching set up, no doubt he’ll be on the lookout for an A-League coaching opportunity, and his greatest asset could well be his football connections. This is actually a big selling point to potential suitors. Much the same as Farina has done, Graham will have the player connections and friendships to get early dibs on Socceroos returning from overseas.

Cons: His teams have a history of playing questionable football and achieving limited results. His penchant for a physical style of football could also make him an unpopular choice with fans.
Verdict: No thanks.

Branko Culina

Pros: The former Canberra Cosmos coach has a strong CV in Australian club football and likes to install an attractive movement-based style of play in his teams. The appointment would also put the club in the driving seat to recruit son Jason, who has publicly stated his desire to come back to Australia while he is still in the peak of his career.

Cons: A diminishing coaching reputation after a less than successful stint with Sydney could work against him.
Verdict: A strong contender. Branko is still openly seeking employment in coaching and would desperately love the opportunity. The club could do a lot worse.

Tom Sermanni

Pros: Working in Sermanni’s favour is his strong ties to the Canberra region. After finishing up with the struggling Canberra Cosmos after the club folded, Sermanni has gone on to a successful stint in the United States Professional Soccer League where he was named in the top three coaches. Sermanni is currently in charge of the Female AIS football program and Australian women’s national team, the Matildas, which included their 2007 World Cup campaign where the team made the knockout rounds for the first time in their history.

Cons: Unfortunately in Canberra, Sermanni will chiefly be remembered for being in charge of a woeful Cosmos team that struggled on and off the pitch. This stigma will not make him a popular choice in the local Canberra football community.
Verdict: A strong possibility.

Ned Zelic

Pros: When it comes to football reputations in Australia, few come bigger than Ned Zelic. In the twilight of his playing career, Zelic may well wish to turn his hand to coaching when he finally pulls the pin, and where better to start than where his football career all began – Canberra. This is one former Canberra boy who local fans would welcome home with open arms. To further boost Ned’s chances, he has already pledged his support to the bid by becoming a ‘Foundation Member’ of the Canberra A-League bid.

Cons: A lack of coaching experience could count against him.
Verdict: Don’t be surprised to see the return of Canberra’s prodigal football son.

Nick Theodorakopoulos

Pros: Like Culina, Theodorakopoulos is an old hand of Australian club coaching who is likely on the hunt for an A-League coaching position. Former glories with former NSL clubs like Parramatta Power, who finished runners up in the final year of the competition, suggest he may still have something to offer.

Cons: Also like Culina, Nick Theodorakopoulos had a disastrous and brief spell in charge of an A-League team when he took the reigns at the Newcastle jets for the start of the 2006 season. After seven rounds without recoding a single win, Theodorakopoulos was relieved of his duties. This will not bear well for his coaching employment prospects.
Verdict: Outside chance.

Damian Mori
Pros: The all-time Socceroos leading goal scorer and evergreen striker has long made his intentions known to enter the coaching arena. After a stellar career in Australian club football Mori has experienced some success with South Australian Champions Adelaide City. He also had a brief stint as Assistant Coach at Perth Glory in 2005.

Cons: Mori is yet to achieve in coaching what he has as a player. With experience limited mostly to state league coaching his name might not be on the top of any A-League clubs wish list.

Verdict: A strong contender looking to make his mark.

Robbie Hooker

Pros: While Matildas Head Coach Tom Sermanni may be reluctant to leave his post, his assistant Robbie Hooker may be another option. Since retiring from playing after a short period with the Canberra Cosmos, this former Socceroo has stayed in the region to develop his coaching career. As well as being assistant coach of the Australian Women’s team Hooker is also in charge of the ACT Academy of Sport where he oversees the development of local talent.

Cons: With no real head coach experience in club football, Hooker may be better suited to the role of assistant or youth team coach of the club.

Verdict: Very unlikely.


Monday, 11 August 2008

Matildas set for W-League

Tom Sermanni expects all Matildas to line-up for the W-League opener expected to be late October.

Lisa De Vanna and Kate Gill are the only doubts at this stage but he's hopeful they wil return from Sweden in time to play.

Speaking from China where Sermanni is scouting the Japanese men's group for Olyroo's Coach Graham Arnold the Matildas Coach was delighted with the new league and delighted there would be eight teams.

"At first I thought six would be good, but this will enable others to step up and they will. So it provides more opportunities for more players and that's a good thing.

"Everyone should be available for the opening round, although I'm still not sure when that will be.

"There's a Young Matildas camp in August followed by a Matildas camp in September. Then the Matildas play in the ASEAN Cup in October, we're not sure where that is yet."

The Matildas didn't finish high enough in the recent Asia Cup to guarantee a place in the next World Cup Qualifiers so have to play in the Asean Cup.

There are also Under 20 World Cup Qualifiers for the Young Matildas coming up in October and the location of that tournament is still unknown.

Sermanni will leave Tianjin, China and it's polluted sky as soon as the Olyroos are knocked out. Which could be Wednesday but let's hope he gets to stay in China a little longer, for our sake if not his!


Nearpost Radio:Woden Valley at the Dane Cup

Nationally we talk A-League kick-off, Olyroos and talk to former Tottenham Physio Ed Hollis

Locally we'll have all the A-League news and talk to Ed Hollis, Rachel Harrigan and Kadee Hollis all have just returned from the Dane Cup with Woden Valley. Should be a great show. Nationally from 6.30pm Tuesday 98.3fm. 2XX


Frank Lowy wants Canberra

FourFourTwo are reporting

FFA chairman Frank Lowy said at today's launch of season four of the A-League that he'd like 14 teams to eventually play in the league over time.
And that means Canberra for sure.

It's now a matter of when not if for Canberra.


400 Members: Local Legends signing up!

400 Football believers have got behind the Ivan Slavich lead Canberra A-League bid and become Foundation Members, and there are some local legends signing up.....

Here's just a few:
Former Canberra Times football journo Graham Cooke, Paul Murphy, Referee, Angelo Konstantinou, Futsalroo, Canberra A-League Ambassador Amelia Efkarpidis, Canberra FC's Bernie Lustica, Belconnen United's Steve Forshaw, ANU Lecturer and Glasgow Rangers fan Alastair Greig, Football writer Nik Guoth, Tony Bush (Goulburn) Cor Van Leeuwen (Cooma FC) Cass Hampton and Gail McNamara (ANU) and


Singkok Primary School...could we do it in Canberra?

Simon Kravis "The best game I've seen."

Singkok Captain Kim Jae Heon in action.

Simon Kravis, a signed-up Canberra A-League Foundation member, was so impressed by the Korean side Singkok at the recent Kanga Cup he sent through this reflection.

Simon wrote:
The best game I've seen

A junior football competition isn't the place you'd expect to find your most enjoyable game but this year the Kanga Cup Under 12 Boys turned up the most amazing football experience with the Singok Primary School team from Korea.

They redefined the levels of individual and team skills that might be expected from boys of this age in a series of stunning performances. Even people from teams they'd beaten earlier by double figure margins came to watch them play.

They were like a miniature professional team, floating exquisite crosses from tight marking, wrong-footing defenders and all with a huge level of enjoyment. Their coach hardly said a word during the games - they were so well trained that he didn't need to.

A former junior coach watching them commented that they were of at least Under 14 standard. Hats off to South Melbourne who only lost to them 2-0 in the semi-finals, in what their coach said was their hardest game in Australia. Look out for them next year!



And it begs the question will Canberra, with it's thousands of young kids playing, it's new female and hopefully male pathway, set up it's own football Primary School.

Can I be the Principal:)

We were unable to get the name of the other player in the photo, any help appreciated. Thanks Eamonn