Beggars cannot be choosers and as such, Football Federation Australia has accepted Foxtel’s new and less financially rewarding deal to cover A-League football for the next 12 months.
With the A-League postponed, here’s a review of the Wellington Phoenix’s 2019-20 season.
Under new manager Ufuk Talay, the Phoenix started the season poorly sitting at the bottom of the ladder for the first seven rounds with only one win. Thereafter, the team began to click with their season resurgence placing them third on the table before the season was suspended.
Season highlight: Ulises Davila
Joining the Phoenix in the offseason on a free transfer from Indian side Odisha, it was unknown what the Phoenix were getting in Davila. What they got was a great player who’s played a large part in the Phoenix’s successful season. He’s contributed to 48 per cent of the Phoenix’s goal-scoring with 11 and assisting five from attacking midfield.
Season low: First five games of the season
Going without a win in the first five games of the season was not an ideal start, luckily the side got it together after.
End-of-season bonus: Liberto Cacace
In his third season part of the Phoenix’s senior squad, Cacace impressed with his performances rotating as a full back and winger. His linkup play from defence made him a solid contributor to the side, scoring three and assisting one. A potential end-of-season bonus would be a fair reward to his promising career.
Chopping block: Gary Hooper
With all professional sporting clubs looking to cut costs, Hooper moving on will free up cap space. At age 32 and still valued at $2.2m (NZD), moving him while he stills has value is a good option.
Season score: 7/10
Despite coming out of the gates slow, the Phoenix have had an impressive season. With a squad made up of young talent and experienced heads, the Phoenix have got the balance right and their performances this season have reflected that.
When the season resumes the Phoenix look set to make a deep run in the finals.