Holger Osieck’s performance review: a pass, at best

Mark Gojszyk Roar Rookie

By Mark Gojszyk, Mark Gojszyk is a Roar Rookie

 , , , , ,

22 Have your say

    Dear Holger, just popping by to give you some feedback on your progress as manager of the Socceroos.

    It is no secret that we are going through a very rocky relationship. There have been some ups, more downs, but right now we are probably somewhere in the middle.

    When you led Australia to the final of the Asian Cup, things were looking cautiously optimistic, though the warning bells were ringing.

    You were encouraged to stop relying on the stars of yesterday and try blood more youngsters in the national team setup.

    This did not eventuate and it all nearly unravelled on you during these qualifiers.

    Your ageing team looked tired and slow.

    Yet after the 2-2 draw with Oman you still had the audacity to blame the youth.

    “I must admit I had expected a lot more from some of the younger guys that I tried to promote and showed some good faith in… but, well, you can see. It’s different,” you said.

    For the record, the only players under 25 that started that game were Holland (23) and Kruse (24).

    For a while it looked possible that we would flop dramatically and fail to qualify.

    Mind you, it’s still possible, but at least our destiny is in our hands.

    Your conservative tactics had many frustrated. The players were resorting to hoofball, they seemed to ignore your instructions and there was little structure.

    There were calls to replace you with a homegrown coach.

    But then something clicked.

    The point in Japan sparked some life into the team. The Jordan game ignited cautious optimism once again.

    The signs are now starting to look a bit better.

    It looks as though you have a settled line-up that is clicking.

    You have looked to groom Oar for that left midfield role.

    Kruse is beginning to flourish and Rogic has the potential to be our future creative outlet.

    Regardless of injury or not, perhaps you have finally realised that Brosque is a liability.

    Team morale is okay and the players still seem willing to play for you.

    Yes, there are still things that need ironing out.

    You haven’t really sorted out that left back spot (Lowry, perhaps?) and still lean heavily towards the oldies, but with recent games the mix of youth and experience has been promising.

    Get through the Iraq game unscathed and you will have bought yourself some more time to sort the team out before Brazil.

    Fail and your head is on the chopping block.

    God knows how you will approach Brazil if we make it.

    However, at this point I’m giving you a tentative pass. Do not get complacent.

    And for God’s sake stop embarrassing yourself in the media by telling women to shut up in public.


    Concerned fan

    Do you find yourself logged out of The Roar?
    We have just switched over to a secure site (https). This means you will need to log-in afresh. If you need help with recovering your password, please get in contact.

    This video is trending right now! Submit your videos for the chance to win a share of $10,000!

    Have Your Say

    If not logged in, please enter your name and email before submitting your comment. Please review our comments policy before posting on the Roar.

    Oldest | Newest | Most Recent

    The Crowd Says (22)

    • June 13th 2013 @ 2:20am
      Jacques said | June 13th 2013 @ 2:20am | ! Report

      Good article

    • June 13th 2013 @ 11:18am
      Mahler said | June 13th 2013 @ 11:18am | ! Report

      Obviously if we get through to Brazil the first man Holger will appoint as his No 1 adviser is Mark G.

    • Roar Guru

      June 13th 2013 @ 1:11pm
      NUFCMVFC said | June 13th 2013 @ 1:11pm | ! Report

      What is fascinating for me to observe about myself, is that I am largely happy about the upturn in form not only because it means we are going to the 2014 World Cup, but because it makes Holgers job safe, it means the FFA will keep their grubby paws away from Ange Postecoglu

      Would much rather see Ange at MVFC then I ever would around the national team which says something about where my priorities are beginning to lie

      I was very hostile to the idea of Holger being replaced by Ange which was an idea being floated

      The other option of course would have been to do a Ricky Herbert and do both but that would take away from his focus on MVFC

      All in all, at the end of the say I think back to our win over Germany etc, it is a very different thing putting a European style team together to take on other European style/world teams, to navigating the Socceroos through the Asian qualifying process which is something I don’t think people have quite grasped yet

      People have slagged Verbeek off, but he did his job briliantly, which was to take a team that flopped at the 2007 Asian Cup because it didn’t understand the region, to one where his experience in the region was necassary to to navigate us through the pitfalls of the extended qualification process region rather than the pitfalls of a playoff game.

      He did this so well there was no drama, in fact he could have possibly done it too well to the point where there has been arrogant complacency from the public

      Back to Holger though, he may have struggled with an extended qualification campaign but if we think back to 2011 Asian Cup, he did very well at tournament level so he might be able to get us to do quite well at the World Cup then

      • June 14th 2013 @ 10:05am
        jmac said | June 14th 2013 @ 10:05am | ! Report

        In fact, within Asia and considering all these difficulties, perhaps there is a correlation emerging between preparation time available and the performance of the team/squad

    • June 13th 2013 @ 2:02pm
      realfootball said | June 13th 2013 @ 2:02pm | ! Report

      I don’t believe that qualifying makes Osieck safe at all. My money is on him being replaced by a more high profile coach on a lucrative short term contract, ending after the WC.

      To have come to this last game scenario is a damning condemnation of Osieck’s many inadequacies. He simply isn’t of the required coaching calibre for a national team job. Certainly not for a team heading to the WC finals.

      • June 13th 2013 @ 3:21pm
        Franko said | June 13th 2013 @ 3:21pm | ! Report

        There may be a few options out there to get a short term coach from a cashed up Asian league, such as Big Phil Scolari or Lippi, but can you seriously see Han Berger or Gallop signing off on this? These boys are far too wise to play the short game.

      • June 13th 2013 @ 6:37pm
        Ballymore said | June 13th 2013 @ 6:37pm | ! Report

        “My money is on him being replaced by a more high profile coach on a lucrative short term contract, ending after the WC.”

        I think you are right on the money, I’d also expect it to be incentive-based, which Hiddink’s contract was in 2005-2006.

      • June 13th 2013 @ 9:10pm
        Berash said | June 13th 2013 @ 9:10pm | ! Report

        I like it.

    • June 13th 2013 @ 5:46pm
      Chopper said | June 13th 2013 @ 5:46pm | ! Report

      Sure Holger has made mistakes and probably his biggest flaw is not owning up to them but we have to be realistic and understand what an awful job it is to do.
      Firstly you have very few quality players getting game time anywhere. Secondly they play in leagues in different time zones and at differing times of the year. Then there those with a choice of which national side to embrace. We also have players wary of choosing the national side over their ambition at club level. Then we have injuries, lack of form and melding the right balance and attitudes together.
      On top of that we have the pundits and journo’s who think they know better and to cap it all off over a million fans who are adamant they do know better.
      The one saving grace is you do get paid handsomely for the job.
      Before any of us knock the national coach let us put ourselves in his shoes starting with the draw for the play offs and where they were played. Take a look at the extreme weather conditions the team had to endure. Take a look at the players that were injured, sitting on the bench for their club sides. We could probably all name a different team to the one that drew with Japan out of these previously injured or un (match)fit players.
      I think the only things we can knock Holger for are – playing Neil in a friendly, not starting with Oar and Bresch against Oman, giving Cornthwaite any game time or not giving Kewel a call up to the squad. But all of these are subjective and I for one can forgive Holger these providing he does own up to mistakes he knows he has made.

    • June 13th 2013 @ 7:10pm
      Gezza said | June 13th 2013 @ 7:10pm | ! Report

      “I think the only things we can knock Holger for are – playing Neil in a friendly, not starting with Oar and Bresch against Oman, giving Cornthwaite any game time”

      I was tearing my hair out when he played Lucas Neill in the friendlies against South Korea and Romania. Holger knew by then that Neill would be suspended for the Oman match, so there was absolutely no reason to play him. By all means he could have called on Neill to be part of the squads for those friendlies, to provide leadership and direction at training for his CB incumbents, but to actually play him for the majority of those matches was one of the most ridiculous selections I’ve seen, completely lacking any semblance of common-sense. Why he chose Cornthwaite is something I’ll never fathom given that Ognenovski was available (I think).

      I’ve also been completely underwhelmed by Holger’s use of two uncreative defensive midfielders against the likes of Oman and Jordan when the last 5 or 6 years clearly shows how poorly we play when Jedinak and Valeri are together for example. Nothing against those guys, but when there’s no creative outlet like a Bresciano playing alongside them, those DM’s (including Holland against Oman) look clueless going forward. Not their fault, that’s not their strength.

      Pleasingly though, Holger has finally got the balance right for the last two games, and here’s hoping we can do the job against Iraq. If we fail, we can blame it on that rancid performance against Oman at home. We simply should have qualified already IMO…

    , , , , ,