After some mid week European action, the Premier League was back in action and as usual there’s plenty to talk about.
Surely it’s time for some good news for the A-League. Jason Culina’s imminent arrival has been soured somewhat by a number of the country’s best domestic-based players departing in their droves for the riches of continental Asia. In these times of peril, perhaps it is fitting that we have turned to God.
Not the God of bible fame, of course. His schedule must be tied up with much more pressing issues than the health of Australian football.
The God whose intervention is required made his name in Liverpool rather than Jerusalem.
That man, of course, is Robbie Fowler.
Fowler flew into Townsville on January 16 for a meeting with Ian Ferguson, coach of new franchise North Queensland Fury.
Topic of discussion was the Fury’s marquee spot, and whether Fowler would consider filling it.
At 33, Fowler’s best football is undoubtedly behind him. Dogged by injuries in the past few years, he has bounced between short stints with Liverpool, Cardiff and Blackburn.
But should he remain injury free, few could doubt his ability cut it in the A-League.
Besides, the Fury’s decision to chase Fowler is not just purely a football one. Dwight Yorke showed what the right marquee signing could do when he electrified Sydney in his one season with the Sky Blues.
Crucially in the first season for the Fury, Fowler’s signing would spark enormous interest in the Townsville community.
Not that North Queensland is the only suitor for Fowler. Soon after he left Townsville, it emerged that teams in China were prepared to throw big bucks at the 26-time capped Englishman.
But while Fowler could potentially earn far more at other clubs, money may not necessarily be the major factor in his decision.
Having earned more than sizable wages for at least a decade, Fowler has invested wisely in property and horseracing.
A move to Townsville would be a lifestyle change after years of kicking the frost off training grounds during the harsh British winters.
Ferguson appears quietly confident of landing his man, though he has identified alternative targets should Fowler spurn his advances.
But he would have been heartened last week after learning that Fowler had requested further information on Townsville schools in which he could potentially enrol his three children.
Should Fowler decide to nail his pennant to the Fury’s post, it would prove a terrific bit of news for the new franchise – which so far has played second fiddle to Gold Coast United – and the local game as a whole.
Given the recent exodus of quality from the A-League, it would make a fresh change.