Notyalcsdrawkcab’s Weblog

May 28, 2010

What is failure?

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 1:21 pm

So Aussie fans aren`t a group of happy campers at the moment.  Fave players out of the squad.  Fave players injured.  Or old.  An uninspiring win against our cuzzie brothers from accross the tasman …

What is “failure” at the WC?  Just being there is an achievement.  Former bete noirs Uruguay and Iran aren`t going.

Is not going to the 2nd round “failure”?  I don`t think so.  Half the teams won`t be going to the 2nd round.  Bit rough to label them all as failures.

A couple of tonkings?  5 – 0, 6 – 0, 10 – 0 … if, IF a team really reached above themselves to get to the WC, and they got put with 3 really tough teams, (depending on their play) they may get tonked like that but still walk away with their heads high – if they played to the best of their ability.  OK that example is really strange, but it goes to the heart of the matter.

Failure in this setting is “not meeting expectations” – either in results, or style of play / execution.

ps. my bad – uruguay is at the big dance


May 27, 2010

“the” 4 – 2 – 3 – 1

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 11:22 pm

Was reading the latest piece by Les Murray over at the SBS site – yes, The McDonald and Carle cuts.  Usually I like Les.  I liked this piece … but I think he slipped a furphy in there.

Macca and Carle don`t fit into “the” 4 – 2 – 3 – 1 …

Sorry, I was just teaching some kids recently about “the” and “a” … Tactics Sage (TM) Jonathon Wilson wrote about how two sides can use the “same” formation but have markedly different styles of play.  Our 4 – 2- 3- 1 really doesn`t look anything like the Japanese one, or the Italian one (at least, the one they were using in 2006), or the Spanish one.

It isn`t just the quality of the players involved either.  How compact are your lines?  Do you play high up the field or in a counter-attack?  If you do counter, how many players are involved?  What are your player`s skills / tendencies? – A wide mid-fielder like Ronaldhino plays quite differently to a Eduardo Valencia, both start wide, but what they do next is quite different.  The thing with formations is they tell you where people start, they don`t tell you about what comes next.

Macca and Carle don`t fit into “this” 4 – 2- 3- 1 would be a fairer thing to say … I think that Carle would fit into another 4 – 2 – 3 – 1, maybe one where one of the DMs has more freedom to get forward, has more offensive responsibility.  Same for Macca, he is a penalty box player, on a team that played a high line and a compact shape, he could be the centreforward, or he could play in the next line …

So to be totally fair, you`d say they don`t fit “this” 4 – 2 -3 – 1, but even that may not be true.  And if it isn`t I don`t really care.  The coach has the right to choose the people he wants to work with, and if that doesn`t include Macca, Carle and the OgMONSTER, so be it.

OgMONSTER!  Roar, crash, crunch.  I am a fan.  But what he has achieved is a story for another day.

There is no money in Football …

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 12:12 am

No, I haven`t been sipping on crazy juice … I think.

We keep on hearing about how rich and how big football is now.  But, there is no money in Football.

The Clubs?

Three quarters of the Premier League lost money in 2008 – some Guardian article I am too lazy to link to.

After their super-win-everything-available season, Barcelona posted a 6 million Euros profit.  As a member owned club, they don`t care too much I guess.

So the owners aren`t making money – ok, except the Glazers.  It seems to be a side hobby for rich men to look for glory or excitement.  The return on the dollar is pretty poor – wanna make money?  Invest in a supermarket.  Or something else banal that people use regularly.

And that is at the top of the pile … lower down the pyramids, teams struggle, teams go insolvent …

How about the Players?

We keep on hearing about their amazing salaries, and the clubs are poor because they pay so much in salary …

Take every player who has dedicated themselves on a full-time basis, and the average salary shrinks.  Think about acting – the majority of actors live hand to mouth, while a small number earn millions. What would the average actor`s salary look like?  If we say that there is money in playing football, then we have to say there is money in playing the lotto.  The odds seem about the same. “There is money in playing the lotto” – sounds pretty crazy to me.

The dedication it takes to make it is pretty amazing – there are guys running around lower leagues, if they had worked as hard at the books as they did at their footy, they`d be doctors, lawyers, tradies or engineers or something – earning more money, for a longer period of time.

The agents?  As icky as they may seem, the same arguments that apply to players apply to them.

May 25, 2010

Nick Carle has a future in the Green and Gold …

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 12:00 pm

when the next coach comes in.  Maybe.

May 23, 2010

A lovely night out – The Nabisco Cup tie between Nagoya Grampus and Omiya Ardija

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 6:13 am

Went up to Nagoya to watch a game of footy over here.  Last chance I had to watch a live game before coming back to Oz.

Initially I thought that Nagoya would stomp on the low down the table Omiya … but I was very very wrong.

The no-players-on-International-duty Omiya stomped on the leadership lacking Nagoya. Thirty or so minutes of Nagoya possession and half chances became 3 – 0 in the space of 20 minutes.  They did pull a goal back towards the end.  But it was all too little, too late.

Nagoya Stadium apparently holds 20 something thousand, but it is really low set, very homely.  The pitch was beautiful.  As usual.

The announced crowd was about 5,000.  The loudest 5,000 fans I have ever seen.  The majority were in the supporters area.

May 18, 2010

Terms used in Japanese football

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 12:04 am

Found this nice list on the BigSoccer forums

wan toppu: one top
tsu- toppu: two tops
suri- toppu: three tops
toppu shita: shadow striker/attacking mid
uingu: wings
saido ha-fu: wing mids
saido bakku: side backs
boranchi: DM
daburu boranchi: two DM
suri- bakku: three backs
fou bakku: four backs
shugoshin: goal keeper

At first I thought that “Boranchi” came from “branch”, but it doesn`t.  The image fits, but it comes from the Portuguese “Volante” – a rudder/steering wheel, one that gives direction.  It shows the Brazillian influence on Japanese soccer.

Comparing those two terms – the English language DM, and Boranchi/Volante/Rudder; my first impression is that the Brazillian term invites players in this position to take more offensive responsibility – “DM” doesn`t really have any sense of offensive responsibility – stay back there and screen the defence, son.

Words matter.  IMHO.

ps. I have played both wide midfielder positions, both sideback positions and top.  I wanna play soccer again!  Too long since the last game – no league, just some work team games every couple of months.

May 17, 2010

Random thought – what can`t you see?

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 11:48 pm

I am looking forward to a huge amount of WC game watching …

It`ll be fun.  Us armchair fans get to see a lot of stuff people at the games don`t – replays, slowmo, zoom – ins …

But a SFC game last season made me wonder about what we CAN`T see when we watch on the telly.

First, the game and the moment.

Late season, Corica is injured, and Aloisi is playing behind Brosque and Bridge … Aloise is bringing the ball up, MV defenders don`t commit to him, and then he drives in a lovely goal from a fair range.  The initial camera work showed Brosque running off the ball, stopping Leijer from committing to Aloisi.  But the replay was a bit zoomed in, and there was nothing to show that Brosque was involved in the play.  Maybe I saw a newspaper report that talked about this great solo goal.

But it got me thinking, what can`t I see when I watch on telly?  Sometimes you lose the overall shape of the play, cos the cameras are zoomed in.  Other times you miss off the ball runs.  Or how high the defenders are playing.

I think the football tragic once wrote about maybe having a live team diagram in the bottom corner of the screen … something like that would be cool.  Or getting to choose which camera angles you watch.

It makes me think that a fan who has watched on TV can`t get the full picture, so I am more hesitant to draw strong conclusions about the game maybe.  Was player X really crap?  What really happened out there?

May 15, 2010

Weather based predictions – World cup

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 2:09 am

So soon, so soon!  World Cup time – I`m Gonna have a great time.

Part – time job with late mornings that lets me watch SHITELOADS of games – check.

Projector and screen – check.

Satellite TV streaming all the games in HD – check.

Comfy couch – check.

And lots of great footy.

I am expecting some to not be impressed.  The first Southern Hemisphere WC in a long time means cool weather games.

So expect a high pace and lots of pressing and disruption.  So lots of teams like us.  Purists will not be happy.  Mexico 74 (or whenever it was when Brazil won) it won`t be.

A passing team like Spain could still win it.  But they will have to be EXCEPTIONAL – their opponents will tire, but it won`t be because of draining summer heat.

May 12, 2010

how far a player has run is a very good indicator of …

Filed under: Uncategorized — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 2:17 am

how far they can run.  Or maybe how much they like to run.

The relationship between how far a player has run and the positive impact that the player has had on their teams performance is non-existent.  It is just as important as which sock they put on first.  Or whether they have a middle name.

When I saw the A-league finals and saw the new distance tracking … I groaned.

Tracking distances run without any qualitative judgement of how effective those runs were leads to the praising of headless chicken types.

May 9, 2010

Pim`s choice – talented/experienced but crocked or fit/less talented …

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 4:40 am

Be interesting to see what next week`s Aussie squad chosen for the WC looks like.

A lot of Oz`s first team talent is not in the best of health …

Kewell, Moore, Bresciano, Grella and Emerton have all been getting older, have injury problems, or a combination of the two.

Nurse them through the World Cup, and you have a talented team which won`t have the same high level fitness that the last WC squad had.

Discard them and choose fit players, and you have a lower talent/experience base.

My guess is that he will nurse them through the WC.

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