Attraction # 1 – Chances for players and coaches to make a name for themselves by outperforming their “betters” from the a-league. Matthew Leckie was in the vic state league before AU gave him a go. A good cinderella run is a chance for players and coaches to get their names known.
Attraction #2 – Big vs Little has its place in football. Football as a game allows for asymetrical approaches to the game. Parking the bus is a legit option. Ceding possession is a strategy. 20 shots on target can lead to no goals. 3 shots on target can lead to 1. Wins can be lucky. While a team may outperform overall, they can still end up on the losing side of the ledger … I would argue that Basketball, Aussie Rules and Rugby league require taking turns at scoring and don’t have the same opportunity to use a siege approach. When a weaker team wins in these games, they have outperformed the stronger team is most facets of the game. Ergo watching weak vs strong is more interesting in soccer than it is in basketball. Yeah, yeah, IMHO etc etc.
Attraction #3 – it brings all levels of the game together. Yes, that is 3.
And something feels right.
The Roar are playing smart, calm football. Working for each other. Focused. They could lose this game. It isn’t like they are whipping the Jets 5 – 0. But they are giving themselves the best possible chance to win. Feels good.
Time for footy fans to debate how to have the finals, which trophy is better, the prem or the cham, etc etc.
One thing really needs to stop though. What’s with people saying “Australia wants GFs”.
Ok, the other thing that has to stop is people saying “First past the post, like the rest of the world”.
Something seems annoying about people speaking for “Australia” … how can you say that when there are people out there “Australian” I presume, saying they don’t want a cup final? Talking about a consensus that doesn’t exist.
And on the other hand, first past the post isn’t the only system used in the world. Korea, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay and the US don’t.
My thinking has’t changed too much … prem and cham A+, cham A, prem A …
where a playoffs really gains cred is when a balanced home and away series is not available … and right now we don’t have a balanced home and away schedule. but we could have if we really wanted one …
At some point a bunch of jammy chancers is gonna drift into the playoffs at number 6 and get a bit of luck and form, and defend their way to a championship. and fair play to them. it won’t be the end of the world if they do. noone is saying that the champs league should be scrapped cos chelsea won it last year. nobody said the world cup needed to be scrapped after a workmanlike italy won it in 2006.
I could be oh so wrong on this, but that has never stopped me before … so here goes.
Once upon a time, the Aussie National Team was the apex of Australian football. It was a collection of the best talent from Oz, including players who were playing in top, top, leagues. This team was so much better than the ragtag club football teams in Oz who were semi-professional.
Got up, watched a bit of Aust vs Romania, and it was just so … blech. Mechanical. Slow. Lacking purpose. Last year’s Brisbane. CCM. This year’s Victory. Heart (in patches last year). All have played better football than this National team group. The Aust national team is no longer the pinnacle of the game here. We are demanding more of our club teams, and should be demanding more of our NT.