Saturday, 24 January 2009

Canberra A-League head to Jakarta

Watching the Australia Indonesia game on Wednesday night 11.30pm our time? Watch out for the above banner in the Australian end. A Canberran studying in Indonesia had the banner made by locals, and she will take it to the game on Wednesday.

Absolutely awesome....more details as I find out more:)


Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Socceroos tickets on sale.

Tickets for the Socceroos game are on sale at

Thursday for the Football Family members
Friday 9am for General Public.

Support the game, support Australia and send a message from Canberra to the rest of Australia....for our "litmus test," from the FFA. Will be interesting to see how we go.


Monday, 19 January 2009

Socceroos to play in CANBERRA!

Release from the FFA below:

The Qantas Socceroos will face Kuwait in their first home match of the AFC Asian Cup 2011 qualification stage, presented by FOXTEL, at Canberra Stadium on Thursday 5 March 2009 (kick-off 8pm AEDT).

"This is a great opportunity for the people of Canberra to support the Qantas Socceroos in an important Asian Cup qualifier, and also to demonstrate the strength of their football support," said FFA Chief Commercial Officer, John O'Sullivan.

The Qantas Socceroos have been drawn in Group B of the AFC Asian Cup 2011 qualification stage along with Indonesia, Kuwait and Oman. The top two teams from each group of the qualification stage will progress to the AFC Asian Cup 2011 which will be held in Qatar.

ACT Chief Minister, Jon Stanhope, welcomed the decision to have the Qantas Socceroos play this important match in the nation's capital.

“This match will be a highlight of the 2009 Sporting calendar in Canberra,” Mr Stanhope said.

“The Qantas Socceroos have captured the imagination of the Australian public and it’s now our turn to show our support. I’d encourage everyone to attend what will be a high quality game of international football and demonstrate to the FFA the strong following that football has in Canberra and the region”.

Australia’s match schedule for qualification stage of the AFC Asian Cup 2011 involves:

§ 28 January 2009, Indonesia v Australia, Gelong Bung Karno Stadium, Jakarta, Indonesia
§ 5 March 2009, Australia v Kuwait, Canberra Stadium, Canberra, Australia
§ 14 November 2009, Australia v Oman, Venue TBA, Australia
§ 18 November 2009, Oman v Australia, Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex, Muscat, Oman
§ 6 January 2010, Kuwait v Australia, International Jaber Al-Ahmad Stadium, Kuwait City, Kuwait
§ 3 March 2010, Australia v Indonesia, Venue TBA, Australia

Australia needs to finish in the top two places of Group B to qualify for the AFC Asian Cup 2011 at the end of this round.

The last time the Socceroos played an international in Canberra was an Oceania Cup match on 1 November 1996 where Australia defeated Tahiti 5-0 in front of crowd of 9,421. The match was also the 84th and final international appearance for the long standing captain and striker Paul Wade. Current Canberra United Westfield W-League coach Robbie Hooker scored the opening goal of the match in the 11th minute.

Tickets for the match will go on sale to the Football Family from 9am (AEDT) Thursday 22 January and to the general public from 9am (AEDT) Friday 23 January from all Ticketek agencies, online and by phone.

All home Qantas Socceroos matches in the qualification stage of the AFC Asian Cup 2011 are proudly presented by FOXTEL.

All Qantas Socceroos matches are broadcast live and exclusive on FOX Sports.


Match Details

AFC Asian Cup 2011 – Qualification Stage – Group B
Australia vs Kuwait
Thursday 5 March, 2009
Kick-Off 8:00pm AEDT (7:30pm ACDT, 7:00pm AEST, 6:00pm AWDT)
Canberra Stadium, Canberra
Ticket Prices -
Category A - $60 – all tickets
Category B - $40 Adult, $20 Concession, $100 Family
Category C - $25 Adult, $15 Concession, $65 Family

Concession (Pensioner, Student, Child)
Pensioner - Aged,TPI (valid ID cards) including seniors cards
Student - Full time tertiary and secondary school students (valid ID required)
Child - 4–16 years inclusive (children 3 years and under are free unless they are occupying a seat)
Family - 2 Adults and 2 Children

On Sale Dates –
9am Thursday January 22, 2009 – Football Family priority offer (one day only)
9am Friday January 23, 2009 - General Public

Phone: 132 894
all Ticketek agencies.


Canberra A-League: It's do or die in February?

The FFA will meet Ivan Slavich and Millissa Fischer at the end of Feb.

We need 20,000 signatures by then, we have 6,500 already. This is our HUGE chance to get an A-League team...and before Western Sydney get their act together..we could well be in.

Can you help in Canberra or across Southern New South Wales?

Email: Ben Sakker Kelly he's the A-League bid volunteers co-ordinator but we need further volunteers urgently.

There are three ways you can on....

Three different ways you can help out at the moment.

1. Volunteer to collect signatures at the Canberra Centre, Bundah Street entrance from 11AM-1PM or as long as you can do, either Saturday or Sunday next weekend. Email me if you’re keen to come

2. Volunteer to collect signatures at a junior club registration day (email me and I'll send you club rego dates). This is a huge opportunity to get more signatures so send me an email if you can do a particular day.

3. Forward the chain email I’ve written (below) to your networks. Even if you’re unable to come out and assist in person, this would be a huge help as its just as easy for people to sign up online and the quicker the email gets circulating, the better.

Thanks to everyone who has helped out so far – you’ve ensured that the numbers keep ticking over for the signatures and we’re already over 6,000!



Copy and paste this into an email and assist the Bid now!!

All you have to do is go to and put down your name. You can sign up for your kids and family too.

Forward this to at least five of your friends and by the time the Football Federation meets our bid committee in late February 2009, we’ll hopefully be well on the way to 20,000 signatures!

You can also download paper forms to take to work at

Many thanks,



Canberra United fan's player of the year! Vote now..

All fans have the chance for the 2XX Nearpost/Farpost Canberra United player of the year.

It's so simple to vote, but only once please coz we know what you are like:) Entries are only accepted by email. Blog replies will not be accepted...why? Just because..okay.

Email or

My player of the year:
First (Best)

Russ Gibbs will co-ordinate the results coz I can't count. Trophy will be presented on behalf of the supporters (hopefully) at the inaugural Canberra United presentation night.

And watch out for Nearpost Commentator Russ Gibbs Canberra United yearbook coming out in next fortnight
Focus on all the players, packed with facts and figures.

Foreword by Matildas Coach Tom Sermanni
Columns by:
The Journalist:Merryn Sherwood, Canberra Times
The fan: Mark Parton, 2CC Radio
The CEO: Heather Reid, Canberra United CEO
The Captain: Ellie Brush, Captain Canberra United
Teh Coach: Robbie Hooker, Coach Canberra United

Yer man Gibbs has done an awesome job I reckon...even if he is a United fan...Man Utd apparently!


Saturday, 17 January 2009

Queensland Roar early in first final.

Queenland powered to a 2-0 and wrapped up the inaugural Grand Final early.

Goals from Lana Harch and Tameka Butt gave the classy Roar the edge and there was no way back for Canberra.

Alicia Ferguson was injured for the Roar and this allowed the pacy Ellen Beaumont a start and she sped past Rhian Davies in the sixth minute. Her cross bounced back off the bar and in the confusion Harch slotted it home.

Thea Slatyer was clearly fouled but sometimes you just have the luck. And today proved to be just that sort of day for Canberra.

If that goal was perhaps questionable the second from Tameka Butt was pure class. A delicious strike from the edge of the box and 2-0.

Canberra were stunned.

Amy Chapman was not at her best, an injury taking it's toll? Caitlin Munoz a little out of touch. But Queensland didn't care. They hassled and chased and when they got the ball they worked it well, releasing their pacy forwards at every opportunity.

United were penned back and the midfield was too far away from the forwards to make an impact. Similar to last week only this time United were behind.

Should Ashleigh Sykes have started? Did they need Grace Gill in centre-midfield? Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Queensland passed the ball better, Lauren Colthorpe, Ellen Kellond-Knight and Tameka Butt controlled the midfield and upfront the Canberra defence was continually tested.

How many of them will be in the Matildas squad?

Sasha McDonnell worked hard but was isolated too often to make any real impact.

Coach Robbie Hooker changed things at half-time and he had to. It was a Grand Final after all.

And if 2-0 is the most dangerous lead in football you always thought if Canberra got one then maybe just maybe. Remember Iran!

But the Roar stood firm. Canberra lifted the intensity, pushed more and more players forward. Kate McShea and Claire Polkingthorne were invincible...all game, maybe all season.

Courtney Beutal would have impressed Matildas Coach Tom Sermanni. Casey Dumont also.

Finals can pass you by quickly and this seemed to pass United. A half chance here, an Ashleigh Sykes goal ruled offside, a Munoz shot blasted wide but only the green-eyed could see a goal coming. I could but It didn't:)

Over 5,000 fans. Chanting and colour from the crowd. A large away support. And sponsors thanked after the game. The new football.

FFA CEO Ben Buckley presented Lana Harch the player of the match award in full suit but no tie!

Football in on Australia on the rise again, today it was the Women's turn and Canberra played on the National stage in a National final.

A great season, a great journey and we'll all be back for more next year.

Well done to Queensland; and Canberra of course.

United fans watch out for Russ Gibbs Canberra United yearbook out soon. Interviews, quotes, stats and more.

And vote for your Nearpost/Farpost fan Canberra United player of the year. Email and I'll forward the results to Russ. Russ will announce the winner at the Canberra United Presentation night Feb 14th..check with Capital Football.

1. Best


Grand Final Day: How good is that?

Canberra United in the Grand Final! Today!

The Caps did it a few years back, the Brumbies, the Raiders and now Canberra United and it's live on the telly.

Grand Final Day:
Get up.
Read the paper.
Read it again.
Take the pledge boards down to the Canberra Centre.
Get a few more signed up.
Back for pre-match rest.

Settle in front of TV early.
Bite nails.

Pride swells when Canberra line-up. We'll have the National Anthem won't we? Tear when camera goes past Caitlin and Chappy and go.

Sweat like crazy during game, kick every ball, every ball.

Hit the roof and act like a prized prat when Caitlin scores. Watch daughter staring.

Cheshire cat grin when we lift the cup.
Return to adult like behaviour.
What's your routine?


Friday, 16 January 2009

Get used to this Kofi!

His goal attracted attention, then his smile, now his abs...and I'm not talking about the Sydney Coach John Kosmina.

Canberra not only produces wonderful footballers it clearly produces wonderful bodies:)

Don't all Canberrans you know look like that!

Kofi could probably make more money from modelling than hthe short-term.
Either way I wish him well, with the sort of scrutiny and comments he's been getting this week he'll need all the luck in the world.


Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Name your Socceroo squad for Australia Day

Awesome. Boxing Day Test, Melbourne Cup, Anzac AFL game and now the Australian Day blockbuster.

v Indonesia with 90,000 in attendance in Jakarta. It's expected to be an A-League team for the Asia Cup Qualifier. Here's my team.

Eugene Galegovic

Brad Porter
Craig Moore
Nikolai Topor-Stanley
Scott Jamieson

Travis Dodd
Paul Reid
Mark Milligan
Michael Zullo/Taj Minniecon

Archie Thompson
Danny Allsopp/Matt Simon


Matildas Squad v Italy

20 players required.

Pick your team or squad and post it here.

Should Cheryl Salisbury be dropped? Should Elyse Perry be included. Courtney Beutel in? Jo Burgess to remain a Matilda? Is Melissa Barbieri under threat from other keepers?

Ashleigh Sykes, Kyah Simon, Courtney Beutel, Lana Harch ahead of a returning Sarah Walsh?

Ellie Brush, Linda O'Neill, Emily Van Egmond Tamara Butt could they squeeze into the squad.

So much talent, so many it's been on the telly. So do your best and help Tom Sermanni out:) Russ Gibbs will announce his squad on the Nearpost radio on Tuesday next.


Who's in your team?

Canberra United: it's the final but who should start?

Pick your team and post it here.


Socceroos to Canberra? D-day today

Will the Socceroos play in Canberra in March?

Apparently it's Canberra or Perth for the Kuwait game and today is D-day. Pim Verbeek and Ben Buckley will discuss the options today...expect an announcement before the week is out....though don't be surprised if the Gold Coast make a late run.

Logic tells me the Gold Coast to boost football before the A-League team comes in, but if Canberra get......what could that mean?


Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Nearpost radio poddie

National Show

Local Football.Download


Saturday, 10 January 2009

Canberra United into historic final.

Canberra United defeated Newcastle Jets 1-0 in the W-League Semi-Final in Newcastle this afternoon to take their place in the first historic W-League final next weekend.

If Sydney defeat Queensland tomorrow Canberra will host the final.

For now isn't it great to see the team from the Capital in the final.

And it wasn't easy.

The Jets started well but came up against an inspired Lydia Williams in the Canberra goal.

She saved a rasping drive early, used her height to punch to great advantage on many occasions and even had to face a late Cheryl Salisbuy onslaught. But for a keeper brave enough to play in China in a World Cup with a broken arm, make that two World Cups this was a walk in the park....or a bruise in the ribs.

The Jets had the wind and the advantage in the first half. Joey Peters and Kate Gill were a theat all afternoon.

But Thea Slatyer lead the defence superbly, once again, closing down the early Gill breaks.

Canberra settled and Ashleigh Sykes showed her pace out wide. Caitlin Munoz was always positive on the ball and Amy Chapman was at her industrious best in the first half.

In fact it was Chapman who released Sykes down the right roared on by the Canberra fans who had make the six hour journey.

And Sykes used her pace and skill to get past Jenna Simon and played a delightful ball behind the retreating defence.

The incoming Kara Mowbray slotted the ball to make the score 1-0.

It was that way at half-time with both sides trying desperately to create clear openings.

The Jets came out on fire. Emily Van Egmond went close on a number of occasions. The Swedish import Frostevalle showed excellent pace to get into good shooting positions and Kate Gill had a couple of opportunities to do better.

The Canberra side was under the pump and tiring on a warm windy Newcastle afternoon. But Robbie Hookers team are well organised, particularly in defence.

Ellie Brush would have caused watching Matildas Coach Tom Sermanni further thoughts with another tidy display. Sasha McDonnell worked hard all afternoon and was frustrated to be substituted in the second half.

Bec Kiting was tested throughout, but the defensive unit held firm.

And then Canberra who were always looking to steal possession and release the pacy Sykes did just that with 15 to play. One on one the young Dubbo star watched her shot come back off the keeper. She could have sealed it.

The Jets immediately threw on the most capped Australian football Cheryl Salisbury and immediately she found space in the box and drove hard for goal. A superb save and catch by Williams was the Canberra keepers answer.

And then the Australian Captain charged for a high ball. One of the most fearsome sights in Women's football but she was ably match by Williams who picked up a few bruises for the cause. Salisbury was booked for her challenge.

It wasn't always pretty but Canberra United are in the first ever W-League final.

A great team performance with the defence holding firm throughout. Ashleigh Sykes created the goal, the only goal of the game. That one run from Sykes was perhaps the difference between the two sides.

The Jets had most of the play but couldn't get enough time or space in front of goal. And that's the difference.

Player of the Match: Lydia Williams. Confident throughout. She's a keeper who allows the team to perform in front of her. And should the opposition ever get through the defensive eight then you can be almost certain Williams will stop whatever comes her way.

Who would bet against Canberra United now?


Friday, 9 January 2009

ANU defeat Newcastle Jets Youth

As the A-League bid for Canberra ramps up it's interesting to note preparations for our young players continue apace at various clubs, inparticular at ANU FC under John Mitchell's Coaching.

ANU downed Newcastle Jets last weekend and head to Sydney FC today for another game but the program been undertaken is perhaps more interesting and is outlined below.

Report starts here:
ANU Football Project Produces Early Result Early on Sunday morning 16 young footballers returned to Canberra without

fanfare or public comment, but with a deserved sense of pride and an infectious
sense of fun and hope.

This group of footballers had just defeated
the Newcastle Jets National Youth League in Newcastle.

This was the first outing for the new ANU FC squad who boast an average age of just 17.
The National Youth League is an Under 20 competition and the Newcastle Jets
players were all 19 and 20 and vying for a place among Australia’s footballing
cream ‐ a stern test for the burgeoning ANU squad which included 15 year old
Dom Falla and 16 year olds, Tom Rogic, Alex Meibusch, Danai Gapare and Declan

An ANU FC spokesperson said the Club were thrilled at their new venture to
support the development of elite youth footballers. “What an extraordinary first
result for us. The new squad has been training together since mid‐November
and the result speaks volumes about the success of the program thusfar."

New Head Coach, John Mitchell, has brought a professional program to the Club and
the players can’t get enough of it … there were over 30 players at training the
night before the Newcastle game.”

The ANU FC program includes an intensive gym program designed by former
English Premier League strength & conditioning coach, Andrew Young. The
players are in the gym three times per week in the close season in a fully
sponsored program.

The on‐field program is based on the former AIS model originally developed by Socceroo Technical Adviser, Ron Smith and indeed Smith took charge of the ANU squad for a few weeks in December.

In addition to the Canberra based program, Mitchell has arranged for many of
the players to train with Sydney FC. This week a further four players are trialling
at Sydney – Luke Pilkington, Tal and Cyffin Evans and Ben Mitchell.

Next week the ANU are on the road again, this time to play the Sydney FC youth
team who currently top the NYL table.


Thursday, 8 January 2009

A-League bid assists Socceroos to Canberra?

The Canberra Times understands a decision on the location for the first game could be made in the next two weeks.

Barr said the opportunity came about because of discussions with the FFA about Canberra's bid for an A-League team.

The ACT Government is in discussions with the Football Federation of Australia about hosting a Socceroos game at Canberra Stadium this year.

Initial talks were held late last year about the possibility of a Socceroos Asian Cup qualifying game being held in Canberra.

Sports Minister Andrew Barr said yesterday, ''We are in discussions with the FFA about hosting a Socceroos game and with a great stadium like Canberra Stadium, if the FFA are looking to take the game outside the major metropolitan centres, then we think Canberra would be a fantastic place to do that.''

There are two Asian Cup qualifiers already in the calendar this year, one on March5 against Kuwait and the other November14 against Oman.

Neither has a venue assigned.

Canberra Stadium is one of several venues across Australia vying for a fixture.

The Canberra Times understands a decision on the location for the first game could be made in the next two weeks.

Barr said the opportunity came about because of discussions with the FFA about Canberra's bid for an A-League team.

Canberra Stadium is already hosting one international football game this year, with the Wallabies playing a Test against Italy on June13.

Meanwhile, Canberra may host an international involving the Matildas as soon as the end of the month.

Matildas coach Tom Sermanni is trying to set up some friendly games against a European opponent at the end of January and start of February and Canberra is in line to host one of a possible two matches.

Canberra United chief executive Heather Reid was confident the ACT's success in the W-League would help the capital's claim to host an elite women's soccer game.


Monday, 5 January 2009

Kofi Danning enters the fray

You might have missed it but former Majura junior and AIS Graduate Kofi Danning came on for his A-League debut for Sydney FC on Saturday night.

He didn't change the game, nor make much of an impact. But he played in front of 23,000 fans in Adelaide and he's just 17.

Good luck to our latest Canberra football rising star.


Friday, 2 January 2009

Mrs Wensing: Canberra A-League fan.

It's very interesting seeing the numbers and range of people who are supporting the Canberra A-League bid.

Recent stalls at the Canberra Centre have shown that anyone and everyone is likely to sign-up.

My favourite?

Mrs Wensing.

When approached by a volunteer to sign up for football, she dismissed the volunteer with a brush of the hand and some annoyance at been asked. I watched the exchange with some amusement....

But then as Mrs Wensing walked away the penny dropped.

Do you mean football as in Soccer? she asked and she was back in a flash.

Well suddenly we found a new best mate.

Mrs Wensing played football in Holland as a young girl on the streets of Eindhoven. She always shouts for Holland and of course Australia when we make the World Cup.

I love football, and I'd love to see a team in Canberra, said Mrs Wensing.

Thankyou Mrs Wensing.

The support for the bid is proving to be across the board, young and old, male and female. Very interesting.


Socceroo lends support to Canberra bid.

Socceroo Carl Valeri takes time out from his short break from Italy's Serie B to show support for the Canberra A-League bid.

Fitsum Habtemariam, myself, and Jono MaClaren are just some of the volunteers who took time out for a photo with Carl.


Thursday, 1 January 2009

It's 2009: Volunteers pushing Canberra bid

We have over 5,000 pledges of support. This is down to our growing band of volunteers.

As the feel for the bid appears to be growing across the city and the region the numbers of people able to assist even on a limited basis is increasing and giving further support to those who have already done a fair bit.

We have been given access to a wonderful spot in the Canberra Centre for the next couple of months, so if you can give a couple of hours of your time once a week, once a month or just once please let
"Ben Sakker Kelly" , our volunteers co-ordinator know.

We generally get 4 or 5 people out at the same time so you'll have plenty of support.

Or if there are other ways you can assist at your work, club registration day, school or local shops please don't die wondering.

Any other ideas we'd love to hear although if you can take the idea on we may be able to get some people to assist.

Happy New Year. 2009? Will we get an A-League team?


Carl Valeri to Atalanta?

Would be a good move for Carl. Many rumours at this time of the year this is just another one.

Time for Canberra's Socceroo to move's hoping it's to a higher league.