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Sydneysideliner

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Joined December 2018

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Considering you same 4 or 5 jokers are on here doomsaying every week of every season, I’ll take your comments with a grain of salt. Almost everything you just said is wrong, and it doesn’t take much research to see that.

Victory’s first season average was 16K. It grew to 27K the 2nd season because they actually started to win, before shrinking again. No team has doubled its first season average, unless you count Phoenix nearly tripling what NZ knights could manage.

Heart came along and more than recouped the crowds lost in Melbourne since the AL’s previous most popular year in the city. WU will more than likely do it again

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

WSW, whether they want to admit it or not, will soon have two great local rivalries to help grow their own fanbase, as well as likely the best ground in the league. Brisbane have the 3rd largest city to themselves so they should have a big crowd jump if they can show some form next season. They’ll need it if A-league admins are to sell a 2nd team there though

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

The way people talk about this season it’s like the sky has fallen. The crowd average is about 400 down from the inaugural season. It’s been worse in several seasons but it’s definitely down on the past few seasons. But when you look at those years, that correlated with the Ange’s Roar years and WSW’s early success. Both clubs have huge potential fanbases but have been hit hard by on and off-field issues, so you’d think with improvements there, plus interest in the expansion clubs, we should see a jump again.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

It’s easier to get to Central Station by train than to Parramatta! Personally I think a Parramatta-based team can and should only lay claim to the triangle of land between Homebush, Rooty Hill and the parklands, and Blacktown plus the growth areas to the NW. Which is still a huge population. WSW and MacSW can fight it out for hearts and minds of people between their two centres, including Liverpool and Glenfield areas.

Ultimately if we want the game to grow with the population, Sydney should also have a team representing Penrith (including anything between St Marys, Badgerys Ck and the mountains) and one for southern Sydney as well. Leaving SFC with everything around the entire harbour and the airport. Competition will be healthy for the city and the league..

Hot property FC: Macarthur crosses the line in 2020

There’s a perception that it is because the type of commercial support the clubs get is often the white shoe brigade/Clive Palmer type. All fanfare and grandstanding in season 1, which vanishes as soon as a lean year arrives. If clubs launched with a long-term plan, including commercial commitment, marketing and recruitment, the punters will hang around.

We need to talk about Gold Coast

There are plenty of examples of clubs having a ‘focus on youth’ and failing, but this is a failure of the team make-up and coaching, not the youth players themselves. Every member of the current olyroos squad deserves to be playing regularly, but they also deserve to further their development in a good team dynamic alongside talented technicians, experienced veterans and natural leaders. This is the value of expansion: creating those new professional team environments, with new coaching staff, scouting and imports along with the youth development focus.

Western United can empty the A-League's recycling bin

If you take everything else as equal (like competition from other sports), I guess the population has to be a big factor in the MLS’ success. Doing a quick wiki search, the US has 327 million people for its 24 current MLS teams, giving it just under 14 million for each team. Last MLS season had a total attendance of 8.5 million, or nearly 3% of the total population (if you pretended every fan only turned up once).

Australia has 25 million, giving it 2.5 million per 10 current teams. Last A-league season had 1.4 million people attend games, or nearly 6% of the population.

So we need to do better but we’re already have more A-league support ‘per capita’ than the States, they just have much better potential to grow by sheer population size. That being said, there are still lessons we could learn in growing a comparably unpopular sport in a crowded landscape…

Addressing football's Australian cultural problem

MLS seems like such an obvious example for us to learn from and yet it’s so different to what the football purists in this country and pushing for. Although it’s obviously a much bigger country (we should never expect a league of 26 teams and growing), it also has a mainstream that looks at ‘sahhcur’ dismissively or just ignores it in favour of much more popular sports. It’s also gone through tough years developing its league to get to the popularity it has now. Where there’s conflict with our pathway forward is that MLS administrators are unashamedly pro-franchise, pro-metrics, have no interest in connecting with football’s past and have not even considered the idea of pro-rel. And yet the game continues to grow there and in spite of USA’s WC failure as well.

Australia on the other hand hasn’t been able to get anywhere near their stage of development without having a civil war. Perhaps that’s why attendances are plateauing here, non-football people see a game constantly at war with itself and aren’t encouraged to stick around, become regular supporters and add to a club’s culture.

Addressing football's Australian cultural problem

Not that Fury would benefit from a partnership with the Cowboys but always felt they were hard done by getting binned so early. Their crowds were actually quite decent for a regional city of 170,000, they just didn’t have the commercial strength to survive a lean year. I wonder if they would’ve fared better had they’d entered after Townsville’s shiny new stadium is completed (and when the different levels of government are looking for extra tenants to help recoup some of their costs on it).

Will Western United be the A-League's first super club?

Let’s also picture Australia (hopefully) with a fully fit Arzani, Boyle, Rogic, Leckie, Ikonomidis, Mabil, Nabbout and Borrello all playing regular club football and vying for spots in the Socceroos attack. Add to that Degenek, Sainsbury, Wright and Susjnar all (hopefully) finding regular club football and competing for spots in defence, with Wright potentially in the Premier League (..if Bristol can rediscover their earlier form). And youngsters like Folami, Iredale, Waring, Pasquali, Hrustic, Genreau and Souttar getting a shot here or there.

It’s good to be optimistic sometimes!

Easy road to 2022? Forget it!

The value of having multiple viable clubs from each city, not just for derbies and rivalries but for the yet-to-be fans or just general fans of sport in the city to get behind. Apparently in pre-WW2 Manchester, people generally supported both United and City, because their loyalty was to their city first and foremost. They were just happy to watch football in their city and went along to watch games involving either club, with the rivalry developing organically over time.

The “one-team, one-city” policy may have helped the A-league get off the ground but it’s probably hurt the prospects of pro-rel in the long run.

Who is paying for promotion and relegation in the A-League?

Force should never have been axed, it was well backed but had to make way so the league could both expand internationally and reduce in size at the same time. The tribalism exists between states and between Aus and NZ teams. The focus should be on that, not token teams from “emerging markets” who wouldn’t be able to develop any tribalism/rivalry of their own.

Sunwolves reportedly axed from Super Rugby

Super Rugby has always been an awkward competition logistically and it would make more sense to break it into trans-Tasman and trans-Atlantic comps. Top teams could qualify for a Southern Hemisphere Champions League, or even a regular Club World Cup held at a single location a la soccer, with top Euro, Japanese and North American clubs. Growing the game globally should start with immediate regions, not this strange “everyone else outside Europe” comp that struggles to sell itself to broadcasters.

Sunwolves reportedly axed from Super Rugby

How great that you and your 3 neighbours can speak for not just everyone currently in Campbelltown, Camden, Oran Park, Gilead, Wilton and Leppington, but everyone projected to move there or be born there over the next 20 years. I’m sure they’ll all agree with you and shun the team on their doorstep in favour of travelling 36km or an hour on public transport to watch a team that never travels to you.

Hot property FC: Macarthur crosses the line in 2020

This completely misses the point of Daley’s argument. It was always that there were other options than a complete knockdown-rebuild that the Government and the Trust were downplaying or willfully ignoring. As for the argument that there’s enough money to pay for everything, this isn’t the right forum for that to be examined, but just because the government of the day decides what is meant by “schools, hospitals”, and any other infrastructure for that matter, it doesn’t necessarily equate to what the community really needs.

Football is the biggest loser from Sydney's stadium debacle

It barely fit AFC’s standards for one, let alone anyone else’s. The new stadium unlocks a whole range of international events for Parramatta and western Sydney’s benefit, as the Leeds friendly proves. It’s also the first new stadium for all of western Sydney (which we’ll call anywhere west of Homebush) in a very long time.

I agree with your issue about funding priorities though. How this one development suddenly led to a complete knock-down rebuild of Allianz and an expensive refurbishment of ANZ is anyone’s guess. And that’s coming from a Sydney FC fan!

Western Sydney Stadium is the feel-good story the A-League needs

If you thought about it that way, you’d also have to move every Sydney derby which would double the typical crowd size, but bring us straight back to a 2/3 empty ANZ

Western Sydney Stadium is the feel-good story the A-League needs

Do we know if he actually received any offer post-World Cup?

And a follow-up question, why have we struggled to export defenders in recent years? The right-back spot in particular seems to be heavily reliant on A-league based players, when the likes of Risdon, Grant and Franjic have impressed when called upon on the world stage.

Australian football needs more Josh Risdons

Disagree that Wellington has no place. When they do things right, we can see the potential NZ brings to the league. Problem is they’ve always just had a token involvement, like the one outsider at a party of old friends. If we want nz fans, businesses and media to properly invest in the A-league, make them feel a part of it. Give them a 2nd team and a local derby and see how the interest spikes

A million fans, stacks of stats and the embarrassing Mariners

Sharing suburban stadiums should be the start of a process towards owning your own exclusive one. If clubs from NRL and other codes pooled their resources they could influence their leagues to favour suburban grounds and in turn make upgrades and refurbs viable. Most people agree that suburban games are a better experience than traveling further to sit in a mostly empty ANZ, so more suburban games should help grow club support. But they need to show solidarity, or else it’ll be too easy to keep taking the sponsor-funded sugar hit of discounted rents at these oversized government-owned stadiums…

Fixing rugby league step one of five: Be smart about stadiums

That’s not mentioning the antipathy to the sport from other pubgoers. I remember seeing a game on at a pub in Sydney once. When it came on, the group next to me were so angry that “sokkah” was on, they finished their drinks and left. Mind you it was a Mariners game

Have the A-League's ratings tanked because people no longer watch TV?

In the UK, the sheer difficulty and expense of watching sports at home leads people to the pub to view live matches, which is obviously already helped by UK’s pub culture; they were going there anyway. A-league has a much harder job getting cut-through due to Australia’s lack of a similar culture, crowded sports market and shortage of pubs actually showing A-league games

Have the A-League's ratings tanked because people no longer watch TV?

It’s all relative to the teams you play with and against. RTS played in an average Warriors team and scooped up the Dally M points, whereas Tedesco had champion players all around him. Try comparing Tedesco’s 2017 Tigers stats, or RTS’s 2015 Roosters stats (seeing as these guys are still referring to the 2014 grand final with Burgess).

The Roar's top 50 NRL players: 10-1

I’m not old enough to remember the old, old days, but the NSL for much of the 90s was a basket case, both on and off the field. There are plenty of clips out there, it’s not entirely conjecture. Pick one at random:

That’s a highlights reel. Miss passes and miss tackles galore, being watched by a couple of thousand in the stands on a waterlogged pitch. The A-league’s standard leaves a lot to be desired, but to say Ikonomidis would be an also-ran in this game is just pure ignorance…

Would Chris Ikonomidis be nothing more than an also-ran in the NSL?

The reigning best player in the league is the 14th best player in the league?

The Roar's top 50 NRL 2019: 20-11