A-League squad of the season

That A-League Fan Roar Guru

By That A-League Fan, That A-League Fan is a Roar Guru

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    This A-League squad of the season will follow all the system requirements – a maximum of two marquees (although only one was good enough to make it), five foreigners, and three Australian players under 20 years of age.

    Goalkeeper: Vedran Janjetovic
    While he played every minute of the season, the Wanderers conceded 47 goals and had a goal difference of -9.

    Yet, Janjetovic deserves a place in the starting XI, with 109 saves. With John Hall or Nicholas Surman in goal, the Wanderers’ season would have been even worse.

    Right fullback: Josh Risdon
    Risdon played well enough against Colombia in his first Socceroos start of 2018 to get a call-up here.

    He plays well in both defence and offence, had a crossing accuracy of 25 per cent, and a tackling accuracy of 75 per cent. However, he copped ten yellow cards and gave away many fouls.

    Right central defender: Nikolai Topor-Stanley
    Played another of his many A-League seasons, but this season could be his best. He featured in every minute of the second-placed Jets’ games, made 134 clearances, 43 interceptions and had a tackle success rate of over 70 per cent.

    Jason Hoffman

    Nikolai Topor-Stanley congratulates Jason Hoffman of the Jets. (AAP Image/Darren Pateman)

    Left central defender: Alex Wilkinson
    Wilkinson made 161 clearances, including two off the line against the Melbourne Victory in the last round of the season, and also blocked 23 shots.

    Left fullback: Michael Zullo
    Assisted nine times (fantastic for a defender) and is joint-second for assists (but played fewer games than the others). Did his defensive duties with 30 interceptions and cleared the ball 44 times.

    Central defensive midfielder: Isaias
    This underrated player reminds me of Andrea Pirlo at Juventus. He often puts on passes to support the attack and drops deep to help the defence, making 66 interceptions. The latter will be critical for this attacking-minded starting XI.

    He is the captain of a youthful Adelaide United and has done extremely well under Marco Kurz.

    Right midfielder: Adrian Mierzejewski
    Is talked about as being the Johnny Warren Medalist – and why not? He scored 13 goals, assisted nine times, and had over 60 successful dribbles.

    Keep the ball away from him, or you’ll pay dearly.

    Adrian Mierzejewski Sydney FC

    Adrian Mierzejewski (AAP Image/Brendan Esposito)

    Left midfielder: Leroy George
    Had a fantastic debut season for the Victory, with 14 assists, eight goals, 216 crosses (19% accuracy) and created 70 chances.

    Central attacking midfielder: Dimitri Petratos.
    The perfect No.10 had nine assists, ten goals, 193 crosses (20% accuracy) and created 71 chances.

    Striker: Bobo
    His 0.75 goals per game is the joint second-highest games-to-goals ratio in the league’s history.

    Also broke the ‘most goals scored in a season’ record, previously held by Bruno Fornaroli. Made the most shots on goal, 80, and had six assists.

    Striker: Ross McCormack
    His 0.824 goals per game tops Bobo as best games-to-goals ration in the league’s history. He scored in any possible fashion – screamers from 30 yards out, free kicks, and with his head.

    Unfortunately, he’s still failed to crack the Aston Villa first team.

    Ross McCormack tall

    Ross McCormack (AAP Image/David Crosling)

    Substitutes

    Andrew Redmayne
    Sydney FC’s goalkeeper only conceded 22 goals in 27 games, playing every minute of the premiers’ campaign.

    Daniel Arzani
    A hot prospect, he has 30 more successful dribbles than Mierzejewski. Keep the ball away from him!

    Andrew Nabbout
    Was unfortunate not to make the starting XI, but teammate Petratos, Mierzejewski and George had the edge over him. I’m putting him up the front because he scored ten goals (and assisted seven).

    Josh Brillante
    Had a crossing accuracy of 40 per cent and did his defensive duties, with 46 interceptions to his name. Also made the second-most passes in the league, 17 short of teammate Jordy Buijs (who played two more appearances).

    Nigel Boogaard
    Was a significant part of Newcastle’s defence, making 119 clearances, and the Jets lost their game after he suffered a knee injury. Also, despite holding the record for the most red cards (ten), he only had two yellow cards in 21 starts.

    Reserves

    Paul Izzo
    Talked about as a future Socceroos goalkeeper, he made saves from penalties and the third-most saves in the competition.

    Nathaniel Atkinson
    An energetic right back who offers a lot in the attack, and works well with Daniel Arzani.

    Ben Garuccio
    Made 59 interceptions for Adelaide, whipped in crosses at 30.1% accuracy and created 39 chances, which was the highest for a defender.

    Rhys Williams
    Can play multiple defensive and midfield positions, made 27 blocks and had a passing accuracy of 82 per cent.

    Riley McGree
    His hat-trick against Central Coast in his last round confirmed his position as one of the under-20s players. Uses his feet well, with 22 successful dribbles from only seven starts.

    Christopher Ikonomidis
    Offers a lot in attack and is a menace to full-backs with his pace. Was a Young Footballer of the Year nominee at the end of his first month.

    Adam Taggart
    Gave Perth Glory hope of making the finals, was energetic and clinical in front of goal, but was injured mid-season.

    Offered a lot more than his captain, Andy Keogh, as he scored nine goals from nine starts at an average of one goal every 103 minutes.

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    The Crowd Says (14)

    • Roar Rookie

      April 20th 2018 @ 6:08am
      Waz said | April 20th 2018 @ 6:08am | ! Report

      It’s almost like you haven’t seen Jamie Young play this season 😂

      • April 20th 2018 @ 7:23am
        No worries said | April 20th 2018 @ 7:23am | ! Report

        No Jake Pepper .. injustice

      • April 20th 2018 @ 8:49am
        fadida said | April 20th 2018 @ 8:49am | ! Report

        That’s the problem when you go on stats

      • Roar Guru

        April 20th 2018 @ 9:36am
        That A-League Fan said | April 20th 2018 @ 9:36am | ! Report

        I have, but I don’t think there’s much wrong with many of the goalkeepers in the A-League. Besides Young did make a mistake that got me thinking.

        • Roar Rookie

          April 20th 2018 @ 3:31pm
          Waz said | April 20th 2018 @ 3:31pm | ! Report

          Young’s made less mistakes than the keepers you included so clearly you didn’t think enough 😂

      • Columnist

        April 20th 2018 @ 7:29pm
        Stuart Thomas said | April 20th 2018 @ 7:29pm | ! Report

        He lost me at Janjetovic.

    • April 20th 2018 @ 7:30am
      Kangajets said | April 20th 2018 @ 7:30am | ! Report

      young g k

      Boogard
      Wilkinson
      The Hoff

      Vigillante
      Ugarkovic
      Mierzejewski
      George

      Petratos
      Nabbout
      Bobo

      Only 3 I defence , I actually wanted to go without defenders like ccm do , but
      I back my team to outscore the authors team .

      • Roar Guru

        April 20th 2018 @ 9:32am
        That A-League Fan said | April 20th 2018 @ 9:32am | ! Report

        Fair enough, but I’ve never seen Jason Hoffman play as a central defender before.

        • April 20th 2018 @ 10:30am
          Kangajets said | April 20th 2018 @ 10:30am | ! Report

          The Hoffman would play a free roaming role to assist the 7 attacking players in the team

          Should the opposition have a breakaway attack , then brilliante will bring them down .

    • April 20th 2018 @ 1:11pm
      Doran Smith said | April 20th 2018 @ 1:11pm | ! Report

      Goal Keeper: Jamie Young

      Right Back: Jason Hoffman
      Right Centre Back: Nigel Boogaard
      Left Centre Back: Jordan Elsey
      Left Back: Ben Garuccio

      Left Centre Midfield: Steven Ugarkovic
      Right Centre Midfield: Josh Brillante
      Left Wing: Leroy George
      Right Wing: Adrian Mierzejewski
      Attacking Midfield: Dimitri Petratos

      Striker: Bobo

      Bench:
      Jack Duncan
      Joseph Mills
      Johan Absalonsen
      Matthew Ridenton
      Alex Wilkinson
      Brandon O’neill
      Roy O’donovan

    • Roar Guru

      April 20th 2018 @ 4:57pm
      Grobbelaar said | April 20th 2018 @ 4:57pm | ! Report

      These are always fun activities at the end of any season, but I would like to make one small suggestion to the process.

      Personally, I don’t think it’s helpful to use the level of granularity attempted by the author.

      For example, you want to pick the two best central defenders for the season, it’s unimportant whether one is leans more to be being left-sided, and the other right-sided (in terms of his normal positioning on the pitch), you want the two best central defenders.

      Similarly, in the context of this particular exercise, you don’t need to use expressions like central defensive midfielder, and central attacking midfielder. Simply call them defensive and attacking mid – that’s enough description to know what you are aiming to do.

    • Roar Rookie

      April 20th 2018 @ 5:51pm
      Waz said | April 20th 2018 @ 5:51pm | ! Report

      4-4-1-1

      Young

      Hoffman, Williams, Avraam, Garuccio

      Barbarouses, Brattan, Brillante, George

      Mierzejewski

      Bobo

      Extended Bench:

      Izzo
      Mills
      Absalonsen
      Wilkinson
      Petratos
      Arzani
      Taggart

    • April 22nd 2018 @ 12:28pm
      BrainsTrust said | April 22nd 2018 @ 12:28pm | ! Report

      Your team of the season would concede a lot of goals.
      Two strikers and Leroy George are amongst the lowest workrate players.
      Merjevski his workrate is okay but he does tend to not track back as well.
      Petratos workrate is good, but not as good as it used to be.
      Isias is older and slower doesn;t cover as well as he used to, so one defensive midfielder behind that lot good luck,.
      Wilkinson is very slow once there is an acre of space , then he can’t defend.
      Janjetovic actually would be a good choice for this team because they would need someone to make a lot of saves more than they need someone who can distribute even though he is also a butter fingers.

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