Hyundai A-League talking points

What did we learn from Timmy Cahill’s return to his hometown Sydney? That and more in this week’s talking points.

Does John van ‘t Schip need to push Cahill higher up the pitch?

City boss JVS said last week that Cahill has lived up to his expectations so far this season. But could City get more out of the veteran Caltex Socceroo?

Cahill has been deployed in a deeper midfield role over his first five games in the Hyundai A-League.

While he has done an adequate job – who will ever forget that wonder goal in the Derby – the 36-year-old could have an even greater influence on the side.

Cahill was hardly in the match against the Wanderers on Friday night until he had a rare chance to get into the box early in the second half.

That’s when Timmy did what Timmy does, getting on the end of an inviting cross to give City the lead.

For a player of his scoring nous and goal-poaching ability, City must find a way of getting Cahill further forward and in the box more often to get even more reward from their marquee man.

It makes sense.

Theo still a master shot-stopper

It’s hard to believe there were a few calls for Michael Theo to be dropped during the week after an apparent error in the draw with Adelaide United in Round 6.

While the 35-year-old may no longer be assured of the no.1 jersey from Jamie Young, Theo is still a top-quality keeper.

Let’s not forget he has five Hyundai A-League titles to his name.

With the pressure on him, Theo responded in the best possible way on Saturday night, making a string of fine saves as Roar halted the Sky Blues juggernaut with a 1-1 draw at Suncorp Stadium.

He not only almost single-handedly kept his side in the game in the first half, but may have also silenced a few critics as well.

Are the Reds showing signs of imploding?

It was never going to be easy defending their title but things certainly aren’t going to plan for Adelaide United.

Seven games, no wins, key players injured and propping up the rest of the Hyundai A-League at the foot of the ladder.

Sure, they are in a similar position to this time last season but are the crevices starting to appear becoming full-blown holes?

It’s hard not to think that after a frustrating night in the west against Perth Glory that saw them throw away another lead and lose 3-1.

The Adelaide players – and coach Gui Amor – were unable to remain composed after Glory’s contentious second goal.

A red card to Jordan O’Doherty, an apparent elbow by Iacopo La Rocca and Amor’s uncharacteristic show of emotion that saw him sent to the stands indicates the Reds may just be buckling under pressure right now.

Has Spotless softened the intimidatory atmosphere of a trip Wanderers?

Over the last few seasons, there’s been no harder road trip in the Hyundai A-League than a visit to Pirtek Stadium against the Wanderers.

With the huge backing of the incredible RBB, the fans so close to the action they can almost touch the players and a wall of noise behind the home side for 90 minutes, it proved a fortress for Tony Popovic’s side.

But the rebuild of Pirtek means Spotless Stadium is Western Sydney’s new “Wanderland” and – as of yet – it hasn’t proved a happy hunting ground for the Red and Black.

The 1-1 draw with Melbourne City on Friday night means it’s three straight draws at the venue this season, a venue where the fans are certainly a lot further away from the pitch than at Pirtek.

Where are Adelaide’s goals going to come from?

When it rains, it pours. That certainly seems the case for Adelaide United.

Already struggling for results and without injured attackers Sergio Cirio and Henrique, the last thing they needed was to see leading scorer Sergi Guardiola limp out of Friday night’s loss to Perth with a knee injury.

While the Spaniard’s ailment might not be too serious, it does beg the question how will Adelaide find the back of the net if he does need to spend an extended amount of time on the sidelines?

Guardiola has not only scored three of their seven goals so far this season but is also proving to be an excellent creator of opportunities for those around him.

Amor’s side will need to discover goals from other avenues if they are to get out of the mire they are currently in.

#F3Derby membership initiative pays off

Hats off to both the Newcastle Jets and Central Coast Mariners for their clever collaboration to get members of both clubs to Sunday’s F3 Derby.

Under the agreement between the two clubs, full-season ticketed members of both clubs are able to attend the away derby matches free of charge for the next two seasons.

As a result a huge contingent of Mariners fans made the trek up the F3 to see their side’s gritty 1-1 draw with the Jets, with a healthy crowd of 11,283 in attendance at McDonald Jones Stadium.

And they got a cracker of a clash, too.

 

Football Federation Australia

Women’s football making giant strides in Australia

Westfield Matildas

Monday, 21 November 2016

staff writers and AFC
The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has praised the progress being made in Australia in the area of women’s football.

The AFC acknowledged that women’s football is developing in Australia at an impressive speed following the announcement that Westfield Matildas duo Caitlin Foord and Lisa De Vanna have been announced in the three-women shortlist for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Women’s Player of the Year Award, to be presented at the AFC Annual Awards in Abu Dhabi on December 1.

The shortlisting of Foord and De Vanna comes in the same week that the leading global role Australia has assumed in women’s football development was recognised by the 2016 International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Women and Sport Awards.

Australia remain Asia’s highest ranked women’s national team on the FIFA Women’s Rankings, with the Matildas currently in seventh.

“Australia’s role within Asia has been impressive – particularly in the area of women’s football,” said AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa.

“They are an important contributor to the AFC, as their successful hosting of the Asian Cup 2015 demonstrated.

“We are looking forward to continuing our close co-operation with the Football Federation of Australia in the years to come for the benefit of football not only in Australia but in Asia as a whole under the banner of One Asia, One Goal.”

The future of the women’s game is also bright “Down Under”, with the young Matildas having recently qualified for the AFC U-19 Women’s Championship China 2017.

Australian female refereeing was in the international spotlight as Australian referees Kate Jacewicz and Renae Coghill, together with India’s Uvena Fernandes, completed the all-AFC affair at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Jordan in October.

The FFA have also run an exchange programme with ASEAN members and female administrators from Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam have spent two weeks in Australia, participating in workshops, visiting the Australian Institute of Sport and spending time with FFA, regional association and W League club management. Participants from other ASEAN Member Associations will join the programme over the next 18 months.

But it is not only in women’s football that Australia, who joined the AFC in 2006, are taking an active and positive lead. Their support for the unity of Asian football has been backed by their assistance to many AFC Member Associations in the last year.

According to the AFC, the close co-operation with Football Federation Australia (FFA) has been a significant factor in aiding many of those Member Associations achieve their potential and the programmes are starting to show positive results.

Only recently the A League, Australia’s premier club competition, signed a historic agreement with Japan’s J-League in which the two countries will share technical, marketing and administrative expertise. The deal will also lead to the joint promotion of AFC Champions League games.

And to encourage Australian clubs to sign – and develop – players from other Asian countries the FFA Board has recently decided to move towards introducing the ‘plus one’ rule in the Hyundai A-League in coming seasons which will allow more Asian players to take part in the rapidly developing competition, which has seen increased crowds and television audiences this season as standards continue to rise.

In India, FFA have signed an MOU with the All India Football Federation where it is conducting grassroots participation programmes throughout schools in the State of Kerala.

 

 

Football Federation Australia

Outcome of independent Match Review Panel – Round 7

Perth Glory v Adelaide United highlights

The independent Match Review Panel (MRP) have met to consider the incident involving Adelaide United head coach Gui Amor from Friday night’s clash with Perth Glory.

The MRP – consisting of Simon Micallef (Chair), Alan Contini and Adam D’Apuzzo – convened today [Monday] to consider an incident involving Guillermo Amor (Head Coach, Adelaide United) which occurred in or around the 68th minute of Adelaide United’s Round 7 match against Perth Glory on Friday, 18 November 2016.

The MRP has the authority to consider the incident as Amor was expelled from the match by the Referee.

The MRP regarded the incident constituting unsporting conduct towards a match official and has referred the incident to the Disciplinary and Ethics Committee for hearing regarding what sanction should apply over and above the Mandatory Match Suspension (which Amor must serve against Sydney FC on Saturday, 26 November 2016).

The Disciplinary and Ethics Committee hearing date is to be confirmed.

Football Federation Australia

Caltex Socceroo defender’s Milos Degenek crucial result in Germany

Milos Degenek's 1860 Munich secured a crucial 1-1 draw overnight.

Caltex Socceroos defender Milos Degenek has helped his side to secure a crucial result in Germany but there was disappointment for another Aussie in Denmark this morning (Tuesday).

Degenek’s 1860 Munich outfit drew 1-1 at home against Kaiserslautern in Bundesliga2.

 

The 22-year-old played 90 minutes at the back for 1860 less than a week after playing a full game in Bangkok for the Caltex Socceroos against Thailand in a World Cup qualifier.

Croatian international Ivica Olic gave 1860 an early lead before Zoltan Stieber equalised for the visitors a minute before half-time.

The draw sees Degenek’s side move one point clear of the relegation zone and up into 14th spot.

The result meant 1860 avoided defeat for just the sixth time in 13 matches so far this season.

Meanwhile in Denmark, Awer Mabil’s Esbjerg endured a tough night, beaten 3-0 by Silkeborg.

 

The former Adelaide United flyer played a full match for the visitors, who were on the back foot as soon as Robert Skov gave Silkeborg the lead inside four minutes.

Esbjerg remain rooted to the foot of the Superliga ladder with just two wins from 17 matches.

Fellow Aussie Brent McGrath wasn’t included in the squad for the visitors.

 

Football Federation Australia