Thursday, 25 August 2011

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...

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