Monday, September 17, 2007

About yesterday's opposition

Before kick-off I was standing at South End watching Vukovic warm up. A few weeks ago I was concerned about his goal kicks and distribution when it came to long balls. During his time away with the Olyroos, things didn’t seem to have improved, so I was getting quite concerned. But he was looking good during his warm up, with both kicks from the group and from his hands consistently getting to Redmayne. During the match there was one shocker, about midway through the second half, but a nice improvement on how he had been going lately.

While at South End, I think I convinced another (female) Melbourne fan of Vukovic’s swoon-worthiness… I’m trying to get opposition votes for him early should I decide to do the Best Looking Bloke Award again for the A-League! I do think that the Mariners have the best team, but that’s just my completely biased opinion, heavily weighted by one player.

Back to the football, McKinna’s done a great job for a team of players that may not have the individual technical brilliance that some individuals in other teams may have, but they’ve got a lot of heart. I don’t think there’s one player out there for the Mariners that McKinna would have to sub off because he wasn’t trying or didn’t feel like playing. The main reason why I think the Mariners have gotten off to such a great start, is that the team is largely unchanged from season 2, or even season 1! They’re quite a stable club, unlike current bottom team Sydney…

P.S. Looks like Central Coast have taken up the position that Queensland Roar had for me last year...


Neil said...

I think your swoon list is great. But, I think you should maybe give some thought to do an award or list for those that are not so swoon-worthy. I would nominate Danny Tiatto and Andre Gumprecht for starters.
It was good to hear a bit more noise from both the north and south ends yesterday. I was sitting in the Gold Members area and you could hear them quite clearly as opposed to the last game where there wasn't that much atmosphere.
The kicking of both the keepers was a concern and there was an audible cheer in my section everytime Theoklitos rolled or threw the ball out of his area instead of kicking it. Maybe a tape of 'El Pato' Abbondanzieri in action should be sent out to all goalkeeping coaches.

Hamish Alcorn said...

Reluctantly Cecilia I'll forgive you for abandoning the Roar as your second team. Forgiveness is made easier because you've chosen the same team as me - CCM - as your 2nd team this year. A Roar-CCM grand final would be fine with me. Melbourne Victory? Where's Melbourne?

Anonymous said...

I think the guys standing in the South End at TD are far more swoon-worthy than any player :)

Cecilia said...

I too sit in the Gold area (we could be neighbours!) and it was great to hear both ends in better voice! I think the 'new' North End needed that first match to more or less sort themselves out, so they were far better in their second match. BWB's move to face us more also helped, and I think sometimes they were louder than NT! South End also sounded stronger, and it made for a better atmosphere. I suspect that the more interesting match may have had something to do with it.

The problem with the keeper kicks is double-ended. Some keepers have no real target, or rather, their kicks end up at no real target. Secondly, many A-League players lack the basic skill of ball control. It was particularly awful in the Newcastle vs. Adelaide match, disrupted the game flow and made for coloured passing to the white, who passes to the coloured, and back to the white...

First touch is clearly lacking in many of our players, and it's something that needs to be addressed in our youth system. There needs to be more of an emphasis on playing the ball at the younger end of the development system, tactics can come at a later stage.

Having hung around a junior club for the first time in a long time, it's distressing to hear parents and coaches yell out for defenders to kick the ball out of play. There is such an emphasis on winning and scoring goals, that the finer aspects of play are completely lost, and players need these finer parts to become much better players later on. I fell in love with Francis Hodgson over summer, because at least I knew there was someone else out there who preferred to watch good play than goals.

Sorry, a little longer than I expected for a reply, but it's something that seems to be getting worse, at least in my head.

*looks left, looks right*
I'd be happy with that for a grand final, as long as Melbourne took out the premiership. It'd have to be hosted at Lang Park, and I'd probably make the trip up to see it too. Of course, the match would get decided on penalties, with Vukovic saving a number to give the Mariners the Champions trophy!

Who are ya? Who are ya? Who are ya?

Once I find out who you are, I'll introduce myself if I haven't met you already!

That being said, Queensland Roar are on next time - no Willis, no Dilevski and no Wedau means I'm on the hunt for a player to take up that space. I'd probably go Reddy, but it depends how he goes football-wise.

Neil said...

I don't think we could be neighbours in the Gold area - most of the people around me don't seem to know what they are talking about. Come down to Aisle 35, Row N - just look for the guy who vaguely looks like my photo but with a patafta shirt on and say hello. I'll have to venture out of the gold area soon to see what's happening in the other areas.