Notyalcsdrawkcab’s Weblog

February 16, 2009

cultural values, perception … and brett holman

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 3:58 am

after looking around the blogosphere and forumsphere, i see that a lot of australia saw a very different game to the one i saw … even though we were watching the same game, with the same players doing the same things … we came to very different conclusions.

no big surprises there.  different people value different things.  and see the world differently.  one of football`s strengths is that it can be different things to different people.  but how certain players can polarise opinion so completely is interesting.  nick carle is a good example of this – his fan club who think he could be our own special one, and his haters who think he should never have gotten close to the national team squad.

brett holman is a not so good example.  the critics club is much bigger than the fan club.  following is a pretty pathetic attempt at defending him.

brett holman has the first touch of a 5 year old, isn`t as good as he thinks he is, has no composure in front of goal, isn`t as smart as he thinks he is (if kicking people outside your penalty box when nakamura is on the other team is any indication), and, until jesus came on, looked the player most likely to make something good happen for australia.

for 80 minutes, australia was bombarded and rattled … nice confident one touch triangles were made in midfield and defence between generally static players.  a little japanese pressing usually ended that quickly, and they were back to bombarding our goal.  but when he wasn`t butchering plays with his awful first touch, or kicking people, he was moving between the midfield and front line with the ball at his feet looking for passing options that weren`t there while creating some danger himself.  it only happened 3 or 4 times, but those 3 or 4 times he did look capable of something.  it was the only time i thought the japanese defence and midfield genuinely backpedalled.

of the players who got on the field that night, he was the most comfortable looking socceroo with the ball at his feet.

on a night when no-one but schwarz could say they had a good night (not even the defence – despite the 0 – 0 i am thinking about that open header that tamada absolutely butchered, and the two defenders standing on either side of him, watching vacantly), it is holman who stands out as awful, while others get a pass.

cahill`s ineffectiveness is excused, as he was being asked to a job he really isn`t suited for.  bresciano`s awfulness was more of a out of sight, out of mind nature … and we could continue down the list …

holman`s awfulness, by its nature, is in the spotlight.  and his good points only accentuate how awful his bad points are.  we talk about his lack of composure in front of goal because he gets into scoring positions.  his awful first touch because of his eye for a useful run.

i think we have a really interesting cultural discourse going on in oz right now … and brett holman is a part of that.

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