Hyundai A-League: John van’t Schip running out of time to turn Melbourne City around

March 9, 2015 – 10:31PM

Sebastian Hassett

Football reporter

City slackers: Melbourne City's Erik Paartalu tussles with Anthony Caceres of the Mariners.

City slackers: Melbourne City’s Erik Paartalu tussles with Anthony Caceres of the Mariners. Photo: Getty Images

1. City must shape up or van’t Schip will be out

Enough with the pleasantries about Melbourne City will become – let’s talk about what they are. Manchester City’s feeder club might want to ditch the old Heart colours for away games, for they displayed the same tendencies as the ill-fated club on Sunday against Central Coast. The Abu Dhabi overlords must be shaking their heads at what is happening, having provided John van’t Schip with a squad that should have walked into the top six. They’ll invest again next season but their purchases may not be restricted to more top players. Elite coaching talent is required to match their ambition.

2. Brandon Borrello’s stock is soaring

Brand power:Brisbane teenager Brandon Borrello celebrates his winner against the Wanderers

Brand power:Brisbane teenager Brandon Borrello celebrates his winner against the Wanderers Photo: Getty Images

It took a little while to be convinced about Borrello, a striker who was granted ample opportunities without delivering that much for Brisbane Roar. What had to be kept in mind, however, was that he was young – he’s still only 19 – and was taking his time adjusting to the transition from the youth league to the A-League. That transition will continue but it is nearing completion after the best week of his career. He scored a great winner against Asia’s biggest club, Urawa Red Diamonds midweek, and then backed it up against Western Sydney. He’s the reason last year’s boom boy, Dimi Petratos, can’t get a run.

3. Adelaide’s season has hit the wall

For those who love beautiful football, watching Adelaide United in their pomp is wonderful to see in the A-League. However, any hopes Josep Gombau’s men will make a run for the championship are fading, even if their ladder position remains strong. There’s plenty of time to turn the season around but it’s time to question their mental strength. They seem to run out of ideas late in games – folding in the second half in successive weeks. Trade a little tiki-taka for some toughness, please.

4. Isaka Cernak might have finally found a home

The A-League’s one-man magical mystery tour, Cernak might just have found a home for a bit longer than five minutes. He’s played for six different clubs since 2010 (it would be quicker to list the clubs he hasn’t played for) and each of them has been enticed by the prospect of getting the most from his quick feet. It’s never really worked out for him anywhere but at Central Coast, he may just be proving his worth as a left-winger. With Fabio Ferreira on the right, they may be able to stretch teams with width.

5. AAMI Park atmosphere giving matches a life of their own

Melbourne Victory have always attracted a large following but the move to AAMI Park has created one of the great atmospheres in Australian sport. Yet one of the most pleasing things is that it’s not just Victory who benefit – the away team seems to get a real kick out of playing in what might (lazily) be termed a “European” atmosphere. Both Wellington and Perth lifted specifically for the occasion in the past fortnight, with both matches turbo-charged by the intensity in the stadium. If only Kevin Muscat could get his way with the referees.


Source : The Canberra Times

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