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Sydneysideliner

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Joined December 2018

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It’s easy to see why FFA are hesitant to bring domestic football back to Canberra. The Cosmos had woeful support in their short existence, which might’ve had something to do with their terrible on-field performance, but they were poorly supported from the outset. Considering Raiders were regular finalists and Brumbies were brand new, you’d think pride in their sporting teams would’ve been at an all-time high at the time. Basically there’ll have to be a huge change both on and off the field for the next Canberra team to be sustainable.

Life feels so much better now that the football is back

It’s tough for Arzani, not just because his injury put him back in the pecking order, but because Man City are happy to be patient with their investments. Patrick Roberts was his predecessor at Celtic and spent 3 seasons there on loan from City, before moving to Spain and now in the PL with Norwich, still on loan from City.

Arzani may be able to convince them to terminate the loan, but City have been happy to let players stay there for several seasons in the past, and definitely won’t be selling him any time soon.

Time for Arzani to make his move

Don’t think anyone doubts Mooy’s ability to find the net from distance, it’s just the reality of getting to that space outside the box quickly enough when it opens up. Because we’re mostly playing defensive teams, and we build up so gradually, these teams quickly shut down that pocket, nullifying players like Mooy and Rogic and leaving our only option to go wide.

Thankfully we look like we’re understanding it’s not enough to just hold the ball and pass accurately, you’ve got to be able to draw defenders and quickly exploit the spaces they create. We look smarter at doing that thanks to Meulensteen’s work.

Aaron Mooy can fill Socceroos void: Arnold

What we know about the stadium: it’s on Council-owned land and part of the Council-driven Sayers Road release area, which has government approval. That means there’s more certainty about the area actually being developed and serviced, and not just remain a paddock. The stadium itself will have a separate application process and a lot of private discussion will be about servicing of the stadium, although being part of this release area allows them to piggyback on a lot of infrastructure being proposed.

And the club has Council support, so everyone wants the stadium to happen, but the question is just how quickly the overall Sayers Road area can be rolled out, and if the stadium gets built ahead of that, how much of the servicing bill the club should be paying in advance…

Mark Rudan and Western United will surprise many this season

Can’t believe I’m agreeing with Slater but it’s just silly to think player movement to and from Australia is a two-way street. Football is entrenched as a number 1 spectator sport in every European country, and it was allowed to become that way without teams in those countries being dominated by foreigners. For that reason alone, the Australian game needs to give special protection to locals until we have something resembling a level playing field.

Why Bosnich and Slater are both right about foreign players in the A-League

Luongo pretty much missed the entire pre-season while QPR were trying to sell him. And he’s only had cameo roles for SW so far, so wouldn’t be surprised if he didn’t come through the week training in ~40C heat too well.

Add to that Irvine has been in career-best form for Hull and it looks like Jeggo has established himself as a more defensive midfielder rather than a box-to-box type like Mass and Irvine, so they were easier to pick in this set-up.

Aaron Mooy cruises as Socceroos smash Kuwait 3-0

Hard to take too much away from a game in 37C heat against opposition who’ve been out of action for 2 years, but liking the energy and (for the 1st half at least) fluency of this current lineup. Looked like Jeggo in a holding role in place of Milligan and he added pace and handled the conditions really well. Having Mooy and Irvine in a two-pronged attacking midfield was generally much better value than relying on Rogic, IMO.

Also impressed by Borrello. Even if he wasn’t particularly flashy, he just had a confidence and competence on the ball, to be able to keep testing the defence and maintain pressure, that we’ve been missing when Kruse was in that spot.

Aaron Mooy cruises as Socceroos smash Kuwait 3-0

It was a tough job for Arnie to try to improve the squad depth at this time of year and from players who’s club form actually warranted it. The only players who truly stood out I thought were Duke, Amini and Grant. The latter is already locked in as long as he continues his form with SFC (and unless Risdon has a blinder first season with WU). Amini barely gets any socceroos minutes with the midfielders ahead of him and might even drop out of the squad if more visible A-league midfielders, or other Euro based midfielders play well and score goals. And Duke will probably drop out if all the attackers you’ve named get back to full fitness and get minutes.

So all in all, it was a good to see some new faces picked but probably a pointless exercise if the first choice players continue to get club minutes, and if others who weren’t available get back to full fitness and get a run for their clubs.

Who should the Socceroos take to Qatar?

People drawing a direct link between Stajcic’s sacking and current results are forgetting our recent record against European teams and playing away generally. We’ve got ourselves a lofty ranking, thanks to home form and some good Tournament of Nations results, but it’s not an accurate world ranking, it’s an Anthony Joshua ranking.

Those friendlies against France and England, and last year’s Algarve Cup (all under Stajcic) were more reflective of the performance we could expect in this cup, and against Euro opposition in particular. We should do enough against Brazil and Jamaica to get through the group, but we’ll have to take a big step up to go any further.

Can the Matildas shake off this rough patch of form?

It’s hard to come up with an anthem that’s both stirring and meaningful to its country’s people. NZ and Canada’s have stirring melodies, but the words are boring God-bothering nonsense. France’s is stirring, but its words are violent archaic propaganda. As dull as ours sounds, the words at least attempt to be as inclusive as possible (well, the first verse does. The others start to go downhill). And words have been changed in the past without much commotion, even the composer changed words in it. So I don’t think it should affect the country much to change words to be more representative. Just don’t touch Girt!

Two Aussies won't sing the national anthem. Let's find out why

I admit I don’t know much of the finer details about the site and the overall project. The architect images have a lot of residential units and town centre commercial stuff around the stadium, is that happening at the same time? Because that will complicate the timely delivery of things. It’s one thing to build a stadium in the sticks and pay for game-day services, it’s something else to build a brand new town centre and pay for trunk utilities, commuter-level transport etc, as well as quickly developing a stadium.

Only instant success will tide Western United Over in wait for new stadium

Social media following is a pretty shaky measurement to use in the early days, especially when it’s barely established a single, official blue-tick account. Journalists, organisations, branded content, bots, the longer you exist, the more you attract a bigger share of these ‘non-fan’ categories. Also City has one of the highest followings, probably largely on the basis of being part of the CFG

Only instant success will tide Western United Over in wait for new stadium

Knowing town planning, there will be ongoing disagreements about the infrastructure contributions the developers owe the local council and State agencies too. This is a private application with only in-principle support by the local council; there is no political commitment to help fund its delivery, unlike Parramatta. So the council’s and State agencies’ starting point will be full cost to the developer and no cost to the community. Which will lead to lengthy negotiations over what upgrades are reasonably linked to the stadium, what should be payable by the developer, whether developer costs are reasonable for the government-led infrastructure (with frequent accusations of “gold-plating”). This can take months or even years, which is why the original target was always overly ambitious.

Only instant success will tide Western United Over in wait for new stadium

Not sure which bit you’re responding to. Foxtel produces TV, using revenue from its subscriptions. I’m challenging the notion that viewers moving to streaming is a cost to bear by pay TV, rather than simply the preferred technology for the next generation. Foxtel are in the hole they’re in because they’ve got a foot in both camps and have not promoted the newer one as well as they should have. Kind of like if Paramount Pictures owned Netflix but were still entirely invested in getting people to go to the movies and buy their DVDs.

Football must find new revenue streams in more ways than one

But does simple economics suggest that streaming will produce less revenue than cable subscriptions? How has Netflix managed to reach a point of producing their own high-budget shows and movies? Surely it’s more a case of generational shift to a different technology, and with that, an increase in revenue for the new technology provider, and production capabilities of that provider.
Problem is, Foxtel has a monopoly on user-pays sports production in this country. They have an interest in not destroying the old way of cable subscriptions, which stops them leaning heavily on their new way (Kayo). Bottom line is while they continue to protect their old way, they can’t be as responsive to demand for streaming as they should be.

Football must find new revenue streams in more ways than one

Good to see Smith back. He’s been huge in the MLS this season, getting in a couple of teams of the week. Surely will get another crack in Europe before too long. Guessing Behich is there to add a bit of continuity to the line-up, as he’s played about half a game all Eredivisie season. Feel for Davidson though. We should make a point of rewarding the best performing Aussie A-league player in each position, and he was certainly the best at LB.

Graham Arnold unveils Socceroos squad full of fresh faces for South Korea friendly

In the reserves yes, I think he’s made it onto the bench once (without gametime) in the first team in the back end of the Bundesliga season. I realise he’s a bright prospect and he’ll almost certainly be a first teamer next season, but still feels harsh to parachute him in rather than having another look at Halloran, Duke or Yeboah, or giving one of the Olyroos like Stamatelopoulos, Champness or Wales a go. Also presumably Hrustic and McGree are focusing on their club duties and weren’t just overlooked..

Graham Arnold unveils Socceroos squad full of fresh faces for South Korea friendly

Agree it’s hard to compare to the States, with such a difference in population. Although individual cities like Seattle are comparable in population to Australia’s capital cities, the sheer population size and number of teams across the country must help to keep things fresh and bring people back to each game.

Having said that, I’m sure there must be more to it to keep a largely indifferent American population turning up (does Seattle have that big a migrant population? I honestly don’t know). I’d be curious to find out what initiatives the owners and the league are carrying out to attract fans to these “franchises” with little to no history.

The A-League is done, so will anyone come back next season?

The Tonys should talk to MLS clubs about how they’ve grown attendances over the years. Some clubs like Atlanta and Seattle have maintained excellent support since they formed a few years ago. Surely that’s not accidental, or because Americans inherently love “soccurr” and were waiting for their team to arrive.

I fear Glory will just squander this groundswell of support though, given Tony Sage’s fixation with starting a SE Asian league and playing games in Singapore…

The A-League is done, so will anyone come back next season?

Good article Jordan. The finals series is a recognition of the clubs that had a successful regular season and a chance for all of those fans throughout the season to turn up at the same time to celebrate that achievement, and hopefully continue their success. And yes, they will have won new fans by making it to the big one. Each final, we get many, many more eyeballs on the game than we usually would, who will hopefully have a good time, be impressed by the standard and be inclined to come back again next season. What clubs need to do is acknowledge those semi and non-regular attendees and try to incentivise them to attend more regular season games the following season.

People have pointed to Brisbane Roar as an example of how spurious these finals crowds are, but who would be encouraged to show loyalty to a club that immediately followed its on-field success with such poor administration off it? Same can be said of the Mariners and to a lesser extent the Wanderers. These ‘bandwagoners’ will show up more often, but they expect a more positive, proactive ownership in doing so.

This A-League grand final bandwagon talk must stop

This is a strength of Sydney IMO, it’s always been a collection of distinct communities. Western Sydney may be an umbrella term for anything west of Olympic Park, but it’s actually describing several areas that are developing identities of their own over time.

Melbourne, on the other hand is Melbourne CBD with suburbia gradually radiating outwards in different directions, approximating general ‘areas’ according to what trainline, tramline or motorway you’re nearest to.

Logo unveiled for new A-League club Macarthur FC

Not bad. A name that actually has the name of the area, not a compass point. A distinctive logo that infers the mascot without shouting it at you in capital letters larger than the rest of the name. No “United” in sight!

What are the stars at the bottom? Looks like it’s grazing on championships.

Logo unveiled for new A-League club Macarthur FC

Strange to hear different FFA board members being so vocal but with such contradictory views. It’s a refreshing change from the closed shop of the Lowy years, but what are we meant to make of it when Nogarotto comes out swinging for football and Carrozzi does a Trump on Charlottesville and wheels out the “on both sides” line? Meanwhile Nikou the chair hasn’t said a word, as far as I can tell?

LISTEN: A-League fans are sick and tired of being treated like criminals

I used to usher at Suncorp over a decade ago, employed by the stadium operator. Don’t know whether practices have changed but when I worked there we were told to move people along who were milling around on the concourse. Not to be too forceful about it, just make small talk about the size of the stadium then politely explain the fire safety issue. This was standard procedure for any sports. When we were stationed on the aisles, we were mainly on the look-out for smokers, but also anyone causing a ruckus generally. You’d call out and warn them, if they refused or persisted, then you’d go find stadium security.

I worked maybe a couple of A-L games as it had only just started then, but I really hadn’t noticed any difference in the treatment of the crowds, just that NRL games were busier, and their crowds more drunk and rough around the edges. The concourse issue probably comes down to A-L games being quieter and ushers having less people to usher, rather than picking on the fans. In my experience, stadium-employed staff are generally helpful and willing to find a solution. Security, being their own company and having their own procedures were much less likely to help.

When is the A-League going to admit it has a problem with policing?

If A-league’s revenue has fallen, it’s because the increase in Kayo Sports hasn’t been enough to compensate the loss of full Foxtel subscribers. The issue there is with Kayo Sports being owned by Foxtel, you have the status quo deciding how fast growing and well promoted they want the new upstart to be. If Netflix were owned by Blockbuster Video, you’d suspect they wouldn’t have succeeded nearly as quickly as they did.

The A-League's divisive nature is harming football in Australia