Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Nearpost Poddie: Quiz Questions: How many Roar players in the Socceroos Squad Rebecca Wilson?

Nick Cumpston, Nick Amies and Paddy Bordier talk Soccer whoo hoo Roos.

And why we despise the silly Rebecca Wilson and of course Aussie Football, Harry, Socceroos, Harry's impact, Harry's position, Harry's groin, Harry's wife, Harry's house, Harry's kid, Harry's greatest goal, Harry's worst game, yes it's Harrytime plus Brett - did we forget Brett!

And answer to the quiz question: How many Roar players or former Roar players in the Socceroos squad - it's right in the poddie just three minutes in so go for it!

We've got Aussie football covered. All the news. Socceroos and A-League, yes we have a league and all the footy news and talk. How many football poddies only cover Aussie football?

We are clearly Australia's number one football poddie, apart from all the others, We discuss all the news from Australian football. What more could you wish for from the Australian media?

or play right from your computer....


Thursday, 25 August 2011

A-League stars to boost TV Deal?

With the A-League teetering along last year football was heading back to the future.

Despite the move into Asia, a successful Asia Cup campaign, the rise of the Matildas and the increasing number of Young Guns pushing into the Socceroos and starring in the A-League moving to Europe and Asia, football still lacked any sense of security or money for our A-League clubs to survive, never mind to move ahead.

The easiest way to get a heap of dough is through the next TV Deal.

And that's why Brett Emerton's signing on the back of Harry Kewell's is really interesting. The two Socceroos will increase crowds, media interest and TV audiences. No doubt about that

What TV figures would Melbourne Victory v Sydney FC bring in now?

What TV figures would a Melbourne Victory v Sydney FC Grand Final bring in?

Could they match an Origin game or AFL Grand Final - (obviously we're not on FTA) - or the Socceroos v Japan game on Fox in 2006? They might go close - even close means $$$$ and big increased $$$$.

And suddenly we can see the TV dollars start to rise and that is so crucial to a game which has 9 international teams to fund, grassroots club with shockingly poor infrastructure and funds, not to mention over a 1 million players in need of cheap football, great coaching and a few decent grounds to play on.

We've a lot to do!

The TV deal would help, massively. A-League clubs would then have increased revenue and perhaps stability.

I say perhaps because even in the UK where football earns many millions more from TV than the A-League ever will clubs are always in debt!

Still with TV money, possibly, increasing, it shouldn't be too long a bow to see Tim Cahill, Marco Bresciano and a small number of Dwight Yorke's added into the mix in the next two or three years to maintain that star power.

Because despite the standard of football last year being the best we've ever seen in a domestic Aussie league, the star player power has people talking more than any game of A-League ever did.

Maybe that's because we're not on FTA, maybe that's because people didn't even know the game had improved as they weren't watching or listening - either way now the fans return, occasionally, they may actually like and be surprised by what they see.

Then again most Aussies like EPL football - up and at em at the best of times - so why would they like the increasingly more intelligent Aussie football?

And I wonder how many Aussies would like to tune into Harry's first game?

Of course they aren't on Fox - so another opportunity missed?

Long-term, the World Game taketh our stars away and now, maybe, the World giveth back!


Where were you when Brett Emerton signed - England?

Got this email overnight from England - loved it, so blogged it!


Without doubt the greatest week in the short history of the A-League.

Not the greatest day: that was when the A-League kicked off but certainly the greatest marquee since Dwight Yorke.

I am currently living in the UK (missing Australia like you wouldn’t believe) and I was driving in my car listening to the radio coverage of Arsenal/ Udinese when they cut to Blackburn Rovers who had just scored in the Carling Cup “Brett Emerton...playing his last game before returning to Australia to play for Sydney FC”. I nearly ran off the road.

I am a Mariners fan but I know this as simply fabulous news. Kewell returning is a massive lift for the A-League; Emerton is the icing on an already tasty cake. Ben Buckley should buy a lottery ticket.

The massive pull these two greats of the game have given to his negotiating position regarding media rights after the current Foxtel deal expires is incalculable.

Even before these two signings I expected the A-League to be significantly boosted because of the, finally, sensible home and away scheduling, because of the standard Brisbane set, and because of the increased marketing budget but this news is out of this world. Can you imagine when Melbourne plays Sydney, when Kewell faces Emerton?

I am salivating at the crowd that will be at Bluetongue when the Cove turn-up. This is truly awesome; genuinely world class players lifting the profile of the local game beyond all imagination.

And what a contrast between the protracted agonising machinations of Kewell and the quiet professionalism of Emerton. Kewell, the Aussie pin-up, wanting to ‘give back to the game’ but like a politician wanting his pound of flesh and Emerton, the kid who stayed in Australia to fulfil his Olympic obligations and now genuinely giving everything back.

What a great man, what a true self-effacing, genuine Australian. The A-League is about to enter the most impressive phase of its history because neither of these two super-stars will be able to guarantee either of their sides success because the standard next year will be so good.

Finally, long suffering Australian football fans are going to get redemption, are going to see a code that is of genuine quality, a code that will easily match it with the other quality football codes in Australia.

I thoroughly love League, Union and AFL; I love State of Origin, and the Bledisloe and the AFL Grand Final but it is Football that gets the bubbles rising through my bloodstream, it is football that could cost me my marriage, it is football that is better than sex and beer; it is in my blood and my soul and I have never been so excited in life at the news of Kewell and Emerton returning.

This news finally heralds the arrival of the A-League in the consciousness of all genuine sports fans in Australia. And Lucas Neil and Marc Bresciano will be here next season...


Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Nearpost Poddie: When did Harry first play in Thailand? Click for answer

Nick Cumpston, Nick Amies and Paddy Bordier talk Aussie Football, Harry, Socceroos, Harry's impact, Harry's position, Harry's groin, Harry's wife, Harry's house, Harry's kid, Harry's greatest goal, Harry's worst game, yes it's Harrytime.

And answer to the quiz question: When did Harry first play in Thailand - no not in 2007 with Arnie's Socceroos, or with Leeds but as an U13 with Marconi on his way to Europe for a Marconi tour!

We've got Aussie football covered. All the news. Socceroos and A-League, yes we have a league and all the footy news and talk. How many football poddies only cover Aussie football?

We are clearly Australia's number one football poddie, apart from all the others, We discuss all the news from Australian football. What more could you wish for from the Australian media?

or play right from your computer....


How will AFL swat the latest football blowy?

Cashed up and paranoid AFL have another wee problem to solve.

Delighted when they assisted to sabotage the World Cup bid, ecstatic when the recent growth of professional football was halted; if A-League crowds and failing teams/owners is anything to go by; the all powerful AFL must have thought they'd thwarted football expansion.

Cashed up they switched to focus on Western Sydney - although they may yet need to assist, or get rid of a few other teams as their competition flounders under the weight of an increased number of teams, hence meaningless games and of course in some cases falling crowds.

Now there is Harry Kewell, and he's in Melbourne. in bloody Melbourne. Even the Herald Sun will feel they have to cover Harry and his groins! Suddenly Ben Cousins, Gary Ablett and co don't seem such big stars do they?

Now I know and you know that one ageing footballer doesn't solve many problems, if any, and when you are up against a huge juggernaut like the AFL Harry hardly matters...does it?

But the AFL swat everything that enters their sights, and where football is concerned the biggest fly has just landed in the middle of Andrew Demetriou's meat pie.

So how will they respond to this biggest of blow flies?

It's a tricky one. It's not a one-off game, Harry's here for three years. And he's still a Socceroo and has cross-code, cross-gender appeal.

Can't wait to see the response.

They must have thought they'd done enough when the World Cup Bid was lost and the A-League ran off to October. Almost ticked football off the list of problems to be "solved."

But of course our entry into Asia has meant that despite the A-League woes, the Socceroos are never too far from playing a meaningful game - and of course the nature of our game, the World Game, means however fleeting our financialsuccesses, we can always bring in a Kewell or even a David Beckham to give us a boost and much needed airspace.

We have deep and severe problems but if we can keep our clubs playing, increase crowds marginally and see TV viewing figures rise on the back of Kewell we could enter a period of slower and more sustainable growth - hopefully an increased TV deal.

This has to be the aim - once we have a sustainable product - bringing in the odd superstar to peak interest becomes more possible. What impact could that have on a growing fanbase?

Something no other code in Australia can do.

The AFL has won many battles in recent year, almost the war - but of course the love of the game, the numbers who play, and the global nature of the thing, despite all our problems, if we can just hang in there, sow a few pockets of growth, who knows how we might be able to fight back in years to come.

If the AFL are Gaddafiesque we are the Guerilllas - hitting and running - and eventually we can make some real noise and pain.

At least this latest blow fly will take a while to kill - and that will be fun to watch!


Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Nearpost poddie tonight: Harry and what it means for Australia

The lads are talking football tonight streamed live on 6pm AEST

They'll disect Harry, Brett, the media response, the fans response, and when it all gets too much they'll talk football.

Don't miss it, should be a belter - poddie available tomorrow.


Monday, 22 August 2011

Harry is back - rejoice!

Harry Kewell is back to play in Australia, in the A-League and I like most other football fans are delighted.

Sure on Twitter, The Australian's Ray Gatt and surprisingly The Age's Mick Lynch, have been defending the so-called "opinion piece" from Sydney Morning Herald writer and Fox Sports Commentator Mike Cockerill on Harry's return - oh how Mike despises Harry. Didn't he miss the mood of football in Australia today?

The defence of "he's entitled to his opinion" has been tweeted by fellow journos. Hard to believe they would resort to that line for an SMH/Fox Sports journo!

For me Craig Foster speaks for football, for football fans, about this special moment for the game. Read his article on the World Game today.

We all know Harry's injuries, but we also all know he took the game to Uruguay, scored against Croatia and nearly won the Asian Cup for us in January.

Mike seems to think he has some real insight into Kewell that we miss. He doesn't.

We're a tad better educated about football than he thinks - unarguably better than Mike. Who else thought that Richard Porta should have lead us to the last World Cup etc etc?

Cadell Evans gave the nation great excitement in the Tour De France recently. And for many followers of the round ball Harry's goal at Arsenal, his mesmerising displays for Leeds were of similar merit, achievements, on a World Stage.

What footballer would want to walk off in a Champions League Final after the injuries he'd had - the disappointments - that Kewell has worked to remain in the game and return is to his credit. Pity Mike Cockerill can't see beyond his own narrow view of Kewell. Maybe Mike is too close.

Harry could have played more for the Socceroos -

He played for the Socceroos when he felt like it
scorns Cockerill.

What the five World Cup campaigns and two Asia Cups weren't enough?

Mike in reality the friendlies and OFC games he may have missed might have disappointed you but name any game he really missed of any importance?

And the game in the UK is a tad more complex for young players than your simple assertions might suggest.

Injuries, club pressures, the state of Aussie football, demand of the Premier League and pressure for places may all have contributed. Why not judge the guy on the games he did play?

But of course that doesn't sit with your continued line of attack does it. The World Cup is over Mike - was the handball his fault - get over it !

And if Harry gets injured this time around, makes a bad pass, will we have to read your "I told you so" moments.

How different yours will be to Johnny Warrens!

Really this is a good news story for football - one we've been waiting for, for a long time.

And you'd think Mike C - the so-called most experienced football writer in the country, disputed by Ray Gatt - would have a different focus for his article today.

Mike so missed the mood of football in Australia on this one - and he forgot to get stuck into Socceroo Captain Lucas Neill and Mark Bresciano who have both headed to the Middle East rather than the A-League in recent days.

But that it seems is hardly worthy of any comment!

Harry Kewell is back - football is the winnner - and Mike no doubt will get much more air and media opportunities as a result of Harry's return.

Now that's a negative! And that's my opinion and I'm "entitled to it."


Saturday, 20 August 2011

Help: Any Junior Club pay their Coaches?

Great article from Ned Zelic on the World Game today.

Question to is - does any Club pay their Coaches at 7,8,9 10 age group.

If they did the club can set a standard of commitment of direction for all coaches - and this could make huge changes to all player development at your local club.

Solve this problem - maybe thru clever local sponsorship - and you're club has a legacy for their players and coaches for life.

Is their any club in Australia who has acheive this?

How do they fund it?


11 v 11 still rife for U7 in Australia! What is going on?

Seeing my club change some years ago to SSG and slowly seeing kids working with a ball you can see the impact the changes are and can have on Aussie football.

My club is no Barcelona - not in culture of skills, but we do play SSG's. I'd like to see 5 v 5 taken to at least U11s but that's clearly just me.

But when you read this link you'll see what is going on in Australia:

In the central coast and victoria.

Unbelievable - full field - christ it's so depressing for the game, for our kids and the future of football.

Haven't these Federations and Clubs heard of SSG's.

Shows how much work is to be done jsut to get started on player development across Australia - and it's 2011!!!!!!!


Harry v Robbie v Mike - A match made in a Fox Sports Studio!

well certain parts of the Aussie football media has slated Harry over the years. Most recently Roy Master (who knows sod all about the game), and Mike Cockerill and Robbie Slater have also given it to him.

Completely unfairly in my view.

Be interesting to see how those guys cover there arses as the season goes on. Or will Mike C in particular run his anti-Kewell line over and over.

Post-game press conferences should be entertaining - and can't wait to see Harry alongside Robbie and Mike on Foxsports!


Harry to Melbourne - the perfect fit

If you have played at the top in front of the Kop when you return home you want to have some passion, some feeling from a large crowd.

And what better team to sign for than the one with the biggest fanbase.

The Victory are already popular on the road - but the Derbies, Adelaide and Sydney games have just gone up a notch.

Be interesting to see a Victory support re-energised and numbers swelling as you'd expect.

Melbourne v Sydney is the season opener for the Victory - Harry's debut - wow that should get a bit of interest!


Harry is coming - rejoice!

Harry Kewell the man who so nearly won the Asian Cup for Australia, in January 2011 is expected to sign for Melbourne Victory for THREE YEARS tomorrow.

This is great news for football fans, for the A-League and Australian football.

The process may have been long and arduous but Australia's greatest player will return to Australia at just 32.

When you see what Ryan Giggs and Dwight Yorke have achieved playing intelligent football beyond their 30's there is no reason to expect Harry won't be able to do the same. He might turn from striker to midfielder as the years go by.

And won't that be worth watching.

Welcome home Harry!


Friday, 19 August 2011

Dutch Curriculum giving Aussie kids a gift for life.

Jan Versleijan and Han Berger have been slated by many over the last few weeks for their team performances at the various World Cups.

Versleijan as manager of the teams, and Berger for laying down the 1-4-3-3 revolution, with a little help from Rob Baan the former Dutch Technical Director.

But by god we needed them in Australia.

Have a look Australia.

I've been here 20 years and only now do you start to see football been played, prepared at the grassroots level in significant numbers. It's slow, real slow, but it's spreading.

Though compared to 20 years ago we're coming like a speed train.

In U7 Boys and Girls, Div 4 in Masters or wherever you watch or play, slowly but surely as you cast your eye across grassroots lands more and more players are given a ball each - the games at the junior ends are increasingly starting with a roll to feet.

To feet!

To feet!

In Australia who would have thought we'd all start playing with our feet?

This simple change is bringing a cultural change in Australia. And it came from the Technical Revolution, or the Dutch revolution.

We have a long long way to go - but until we change the mindset of football players parents and coaches, in Futsal and outdoor from the young age, we really ain't ever going to produce enough skilful players to push some real world stars out the other end.

This might be a concern for those that want to see a great national side.

Me? I'd like to see that, but I'd like to see more and more 7 year olds boys and girls starting to learn to play with both feet, taking players on, control and confidence to die for.

This doesn't come from the big boot at outdoor or keeper chuck at Futsal.

And it's still taking time to change the attitudes of parents, players and of course Coaches.

We've needed a system, a curriculum, to hang our hat on and now the only guys looking like numpties are the guys who haven't taken the time to learn the style of play, how it shapes the play of our players, and indeed assists the teaching of the game to our kids and parents.

After all few players play with one coach their whole life, and this alone is reason enough that we need to be singing from the same songsheet.

In Australian football, on the sidelines in clubland, we've lacked any mass development or understanding of football for so long.

So thank God for the Dutch Revolution and the 1-4-3-3. We may need to change an individual coach occasionally, but Han Berger is not the problem.

And those who don't like the 1-4-3-3 model simply don't understand game development for all our players and coaches, beyond their own little group of players - without a model, or curriculum how can players transfer to other teams and broadly play the same system - or indeed how do players learn roles and bring their own initiative or learning to their new team?

If Coaches are doing their own thing in U12 their players are disadvantaged. Players simply cannot enter Rep teams or U17s advanced enough to allow Coaches to build on this knowledge if they are coming from teams coached by people who simply think they know better!

But of course most such Coaches are concentrating on their own performance, their team results rather than individual player development.

Our players have the technical skills, the recent World Cup showed that, particularly at U20 level - so is it the Coach or individual player knowledge that is holding us back?

We need to keep the Dutch curriculum - the education of the masses has begun. It won't stop now.

And the more players that reach the age of 12 able to play football, the better the top top players will be.

For most of us at grassroots we'll never produce a Socceroo, but giving Aussie kids the gift of simply being able to take a ball, left and right, control and beat a player. That's a gift.

The national curriculum can take us to that goal and give every Aussie a gift for a life.


Bye Bye Becks?

I guess there is gold in them there hills - and flogging David Beckham one more time must make some match-fixer a happy man.

But aren't we over this?

With the Matildas, Olyroos, The World Cup campaign and the A-League about to kick-off do we really need a micky mouse show game again.

The novelty has surely gone or are we so interested in Beck-fever (does it exist anywhere other than Newcastle or Perth these days?) that we need him back for a game of football that means nothing.

Once was great, twice in a regional centre was interesting, but to go around again. Forget it!


Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Canberra United to get overseas coach - I kid you not!

Interesting positions:

Former Coach Ray Junna thinks we shouldn't import players for Canberra United.

CEO Heather Reid has just imported a Coach into the Club

Former Coach Ray Junna said:

''That link is still important with whoever is the coach there [at Canberra United] because primarily you want to have most of your local players going to the W-League [and] not Canberra having to import players yearly because we haven't got the depth here. I think Canberra football has improved vastly in the last few years.''

Capital Football chief executive Heather Reid wouldn't be drawn on who the new coach was, but did reveal it would be the first coach recruited from overseas by a W-League club.

''It'll be exciting for the league and it'll be another first,'' Reid said.

''Canberra United will be achieving another first.''

It's rumoured the new United coach will come from Norway, Sweden or the Czech Republic.

W-League side Canberra United are apparently going to get an overseas Coach.

So there isn't an Australian women or man worthy of this role.
Pathetic, even more so in the Women's game which is all of ten games last time I looked.

Does the ten game league really need overseas talent in 2011 - when we could surely be developing our female and/or male coaches in the national league.

Aren't we moving beyond this?

And on that open process which Canberra, with its Public Service mentality seems to value soooo highly, anyone see the Ads for the job over the last few weeks/months?

I was going to apply - dammit!


Fozzie on fire on the Twitter - FSNW Coaches under the pump!

Well everyone has an opinion and there is always a debate between those who've played professionally and those Coaches who haven't.

Do you need to play professionally to develop young players? I don't think so but then I didn't train professionally - I played in Canberra!!!!

But maybe our Coaches who are full-time, but haven't played professionally have lacked real guidance from the professional side of the game down the years.

Anyway enjoyed the Fozzie outbursts below on Twitter - he's well worth a follow unlike most of the rest of the world on there - have no idea if he's right or wrong.


You've had people in charge of elite talents in NSW who wouldn't know shape of ball. Now Spider, shared pitch with Kaka & Alex, 80+ caps

Craig Foster

How valuable for young keeper to come under guidance of spider with AC Milan experience. Priceless! Milan training principles, pro mentality

Craig Foster

The deadwood coaches who've been killing the game for years at FNSW are on way out, top quality former players being brought in. Bravo!!


Saturday, 13 August 2011

Lynchy gets one wrong - FFA are ahead of you on this one!

Michael Lynch - a man who's family is from the far end of the Curragh (Irish Racecourse) we're just a bit closer, but further away. Got it?

Lynchy is a much respected Aussie footy writer - but on his player development focus written in the Age I reckon he has a couple of points wrong or at least is unaware of what is coming.

Mick writes in The Age:

There is a strong argument that the Institute of Sport system should be scrapped.

I don't think there is much of an argument, and if there is let's hear it - especially now the players are coming in at 15 in preparation for the U17 Aussie team ie much younger than in Viduka's day.

Herding the elite youngsters onto a campus in Canberra may help with their nutrition and ensure they all attend tactical lectures, but it doesn't give them the tough grounding they need to succeed in this the most cutthroat of global sports.

Again - it worked for Mark Viduka, Kevin Muscat, Craig Moore, Brett Emerton, Vinny Grella, Marco Bresciano, Carl Valeri, Brett Holman and a whole heap more

Scrap the National Youth League and get all the A-League teams to field youth teams in their elite state competitions. For 18-year-olds playing week in and week out against seasoned semi professionals - men earning up to $1000 a week and more - in the Victorian Premier League would be far more beneficial than playing against their own age group.

Again there are no 18 year olds at the AIS - they are now taken in at 15/16 so not sure where Mick is heading with this one - it's a different intake to Viduka's day.

Think the proposal is that AIS play in ACT Premier League AND A-League Youth league and all A-League Youth sides play in their local State Premier League - Viduka could do it at 17 - he was an exception the current mob are 15/16 and could meet Kevin Muscat!

History teaches us that the most successful Socceroos are the ones who are good enough to play first-team football early in life. Mark Viduka was an NSL star at 17. Harry Kewell was playing in the premiership at 18. Brett Emerton was a big-name NSL star as a teenager … the list of those who, even as boys, were better than the men they played against, goes on.

Yes but Mick - Matt Mckay and Tim Cahill are also very successful and in Cahill's case close to the two above. So history tells us a lot but not everything.

FFA increasing the games for the A-League Youth teams and AIS is the priority for player development for these age groups - I reckon the FFA are doing it.


What A-League youth team policy would mean for Canberra?

Canberra Club members may have an opportunity to assist Australian player development. If history in the local clubland is anything to go by, there is no guarantee they'll do it -at least not without a fight!

Along time ago I was good enough to take on Mark Viduka and Craig Moore in football. No not in the Old Firm derby or even for Ireland v Australia.

Canberra Olympic v AIS.

The lads were 17 playing for the AIS in the Canberra Premier League - I was a slightly built ageing forward playing with Canberra Olympic.

Of course Viduka - who was a physically imposing man even then and the wily Craig Moore learnt their trade playing against me. In fact without the three games in which we clashed I doubt Moore particularly would never have gone on to higher things. Viduka - as forwards we may have been on the same pitch but there was only one guy playing football, even if he was a mere babe. He ws magnificent.

So with the FFA aiming to put all A-League teams into their State Leagues to ensure player development starts to reach a reasonable level, I presume and have heard the idea that the AIS would play in the Canberra Premer League.

A good move for the AIS - perhaps although the intake is mmuch younger than in Viduka's day - would they be up to playing the men of Canberra this time around?

Lot's of permutations and things to be discussed but I'd imagine the local clubs would be concerned about this possibility - they always seem to be when Rep teams of any level enter any league in Canberra.

For me, as a player - I got to play against Mark Viduka and Craig Moore - there were probably others. We even beat them at least once. The AIS won the league - I didn't care - they deserved it. But some clubs won't feel the same way.

For the good of the game our elite young players simply need more football so the next time a local club member sits down to watch the Socceroos and bemoans the technical development, or lack thereof of our players we should ask ourselves - are we assisting player development?

And, of course a local lad, a young lad can compare himself to the best players running around in Australia, or close to it. And this will tell the kid exactly how far behind he is - or alternatively the AIS Coach may see a young guy on the other team so good he invites him in for a trial.

Most unlikely - but would be a nice measurement tool for all in the local youth game wouldn't it?


Thursday, 11 August 2011

Quiz: Which A-League football club owner said yesterday, "We don't lose any money really"

"I started the club, I don't want to see it closed. Plus, I can afford it. I've got plenty of money to run the football team. We don't lose any money, really. I'm staying at the club for as long as I can."

We don't lose any money, really.

Who said that. Man United owners, Barcelona, or an A-League owner?

Yes it was Clive Palmer - here's the rest of the article.

Bet the other owners wish they could say the same!

Is Clive running the club to cost - the way our clubs should be run - shunt the high fee players, close the stadium on three sides and build your revenues and THEN spend the lot.


Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Nearpost Poddie talks Socceroos, Young Socceroo, Gold Coast United, Harry, Matty and more

Nick Cumpston, Nick Amies and Eamonn Flanagan talk Aussie Football.

We've got Aussie football covered. All the news. Socceroos and Young Socceroos and all the footy news and talk. How many football poddies only cover Aussie football?

We are clearly Australia's number one football poddie, apart from all the others, We discuss all the news from Australian football. What more could you wish for from the Australian media?

or play right from your computer....


Sunday, 7 August 2011

Young Socceroos - we ain't so bad.

Now before we all line-up to shoot our Coach, Han Berger, Jan Boultbee, Andrew Dimitriou (didn't he nick all our players) maybe, just maybe we ain't so bad.

We went in as Asian Cup losers and lost Matthew Leckie before the tournament.

The World Game is tough - Spain are tougher still.

Like the U17s we struggled it's fair to say - like the U17s we had few if any competent defenders, but unlike the U17s we saw many signs of individual skill.

And this is what many of us have been hoping for, for many years.

Systems, 1-4-3-3, sure we all want a flowing, beautiful game but in reality if Tom King (Liverpool) Servet Uzular (Sydney FC) and Rhyan Grant(Sydney FC) are key defenders in your national teams - and there are many others in each team - you just ain't going to be producing flowing football, or defending players who have World craft and great pace; often both.

Jan Versleijan and Ante Milicic must have known this.

So we lost, sometimes it was ugly, especially this morning, early on.

But I saw:

Kerem Bulut - work his socks off when all was lost - often on his own. And his goal this morning was a great reward for his energy. How far can he go? Do we know how good he is after these three performances?

Terry Antonis - stamped his authority and skill in every game he played. He can go to the next World Cup - hopefully with two full A-League seasons under his belt. Interesting player.

Muastafa Amini - another with time in front of him, he can go to the next World Cup - and produced some, not many, moments of class.

Tommy Oar - showed his talents, his pace isn't quite fast enough often enough, his skill, not tricky enough, not yet. he's not Harry and he probably won't sustain a start in Eredivision but in the A-League, in Asia, he'll be an important player. Prove me wrong Tommy. His crosses were frequent and he doesn't have to beat his man to cross. A shot to die for. He can only get better.....with games, but will he play at Utrecht?

Kofi Danning - unlike the stars above, Kofi has been shunted, not to Europe but to Brisbane. He showed, in patches, that he could still make a huge impact on the A-League. If Ange Postecoglou can't improve Kofi..who can? He has sufficient pace and improving skill to make a mark this season I think. Kofi done good this time out.

Bernie Ibini-Isi will unsettle A-League defences - can he make it to Europe. I think not, but again a professional career should be his.

D.Petratos - Sydney FC. Surely another Leckie. Watch him make a huge impact in the A-League this season. Can he keep injury free - play in a decent team. Legs for a Mark Bridge lazy pass - but legs and a shot to die for. Played for the team in midfield - up front he could be lethal.

Ben Kantarovski - a great player - everyone says it. I think his progress has stalled considerably at the Jets under Branko and co. Can he regain his top notch reputation in the A-League? Is he good enough for an overseas gig?

Not yet.

All these guys can make a career in professional football - previously U20 squads have seen many many players fall by the way side, not least in recent years, U20 Captain Shaun Ontong and U17 World 11 player Kaz Patafta.

Most of the above have pace, some have skill. And more skill than we are used to seeing in a Young Socceroos team.

Kerem Bulut and Terry Antonis have the most potential based on the last 3 performances, but Musti has the contract, and Oar is already in Europe.

The last U20s, U17 and Olympics teams were - shall we say apart from Nikita Rukavystya - slow and disappointing.

Of course we always have great keepers - Adam Federici, Paul Izzo and now Mark Birighetti - maybe because they get so much practice.

Alot to like in these players - sod all to like in the team!

See ya Jan!


Friday, 5 August 2011

Why we need Fozzie!

Each of these competitions has its own vested interest and with a limited talent pool, the same girls or boys are training and playing in the same elite competitions across all of these areas, with no co-ordination whatsoever.

Full article here

Raise an issue on a blog and you'll be criticised for simply having a thought - but someone needs to be raising these issues and in Craig Foster we have someone prepared to discuss, argue, and when necessary advocate for change.

Anyone following junior football in Australia knows we have "some issues" with player development - same kids for Rep Football, in Futsal, Outdoor for Federation and Schools.

School Representation Football has long been considered a waste of time for player development - of course not if you get selected - but those with a broader view of the game know school sport is crap.

And yet the competition for our players to train in the same squads goes on and on and on.

Good on yer Fozzie - give the players a break and raise the quality of the individual player development and focus. Would be nice rather than having players running off or in-demand for this team, this rep team, outdoor, futsal school, state and club.

No wonder players get injured or turned off!


Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Nearpost Poddie talk Young Socceroos and more.

Nick Cumpston, Nick Amies and Paddy Bordier talk Aussie Football.

We've got Aussie football covered. All the news. Socceroos and Young Socceroos and all the footy news and talk. How many football poddies only cover Aussie football?

We are clearly Australia's number one football poddie, apart from all the others, We discuss all the news from Australian football. What more could you wish for from the Australian media?

or play right from your computer....


Tuesday, 2 August 2011

A-League break is too long - bloggers getting twitchy - could write about AFL I suppose

Spencer Prior tweeted on the weekend that there is no football, only League and AFL on the telly in Australia.

Me mate even had to watch Rangers v St Johnstone to get a football fiz - geeez poor bugger!

And all my mates are wondering if the A-League will ever start again.

Get on with it - this break is killing us.

Killing player development, killing media interest, killing the fans, and killing the professional game in Australia, and killing us bloggers.

How much longer can I write about Aussie football when the league doesn't seem to even exist - or is it just me!


Lavicka: "We will entertain" Well that'll be a first won't it!

Sydney FC's build up to the pre-season has been Lavicka-esque.

Dull and duller.

Apart from the Harry talk - even that is subdued compared to Melbourne - what is there to reignite the place.

The club needs excitement off the field, all year. And what have we got? Jamie Coyne!

Perth Glory play Celtic and are off to South Africa and sign a heap of names.
Melbourne Victory play Celtic and have a few players to interest in the mix - plus they are Melbourne, membership, fanbase etc.
Heart are on the move. David Williams could excite alone.

Adelaide United, Central Coast Boatshed and Newcastle Jets - all are setting a cracking pace with months to go.

Celtic even came to Sydney and played.....the Mariners - sort of like going to Glasgow and playing Motherwell, or Manchester and playing Wigan I guess

Vistalav Lavicka never excited in the year Sydney won the title - NEVER and last year they proved what sort of team and coach they had. Dull at best.

Tactical, methodical but had not a creative idea over the halfway line or strategy in his head.

Terry Antonis and Demi Petratos may excite a little upon their return. Could be fun. Jamie Coyne, excuse me, does not.

Only Harry can save Sydney FC.

With the present squad, expect nothing - no excitement, no hype and no fans.

What is it with Sydney FC and our Czech Coach?

Maybe they like a November start!


Socceroos squad: Neil Kilkenny still with the Roos?

Socceroos squad v Wales has been announced and somewhat dishearteningly to me - given his recent performances, Bristol City's Neil Kilkenny has grabbed a place in an 18 man squad.

In a 32 World Cup possible squad maybe - but the final 18!

Kilkenny hasn't done nearly enough in my view to keep a Socceroos place after some rather shaky performances in the Asian Cup and recent friendlies. He doesn't give me much hope for the future either.

We've seen many Asia teams now and lack of touch in the midfield is not a quality we need. Come on Holger!

Hurry up Jason Culina - back into the fold and for that matter grow up fast Terry Antonis.

The centre midfield positions are critical in international football. Kilkenny performed well for five minutes in Asia when he had TWO other centre-midfielders alongside. Can we afford to play three?

Good to see Rhys Williams in the mix - Michael Zullo is raw at best but he'll have to perform if it seems if we are to progress easily in the coming World Cup groups - with David Carney seemingly often injured, and clubless, we'll probably need the flying Zullo.

And he's fast.

Good to see Luke De Vere getting a call-up, surely he'll be a very competent centre-back in years to come.

But where is the Ogmonster?

And no Josh Kennedy - perhaps being saved for the World Cup. With Scott McDonald, it's not much of a forward line, no Harry Kewell; and James Troisi has a fair bit to do to convince me that Matthew Leckie isn't really the next best emerging forward.
At least he's fast!

Is Robbie Kruse going to take us to the World Cup? He'll need a bit of help if he is - he's good, let's hope the Div 2 German player becomes something a little more in the coming months!

Harry needs a team, Rukavystya needs to score in the Bundesliga and Culina needs to get fit - quick.

Not sure the value of this Welsh game - and interestingly - once again can we only afford to take 18 players!