Asian Cup | Socceroos | A-League | Youth development
Graham Arnold & the Socceroos say their confidence was 'lost in translation', while also called on to 'earn their keep'08 January 2019 | FT Editor
Asian Cup results
- China, 2 v Kyrgyz Republic, 1
- South Korea, 1 v Philippines, 0
- Iran, 5 v Yemen, 0
Jordan manager, Vital Borkelmans, suggests that Australia under-estimated Jordan “and approached the match with a 'dangerous' confidence.” He said the win by Jordan, ranked 109, shows yet again that a small team is “capable of beating the big teams”. While Jordan had only 23% possession, they read the Socceroos tactics “to a tee”. Graham Arnold says the confidence was not arrogance or hubris, but “belief”, and his words were lost in translation.
The Socceroos were 'naive and negative' ($) in their match against Jordan, according to Mark Milligan. He says they didn't move the ball quickly enough to begin with, and then lapsed into negativity. Regardless of where a game is played, you have to “earn your right to win”, he says. The story is repeated here (still $).
Jamie Maclaren got a start on Sunday but spent much of the match isolated and still waiting for his first Socceroos goal. However, his Hibs team mates, Milligan and Martin Boyle say it's only a matter of time before he does, and Milligan adding that Maclaren needed better service.
Tom Rogic played most of the game on Sunday with a broken bone in his hand, and it is not yet clear whether he will be cleared to play on Friday. Rogic wasn't at his best and missed many passes he would normally complete, but Jackson Irvine says it's not right to blame just one player as there were “14 out there on the day”.
Both Jackson Irvine and Chris Ikonomidis are tipped to get a start against Palestine on Friday. They are seen as being key to “unlocking a pesky Palestine defence”. Andrew Nabbout is still in doubt with a groin strain, and Josh Risdon is said to have the same injury. Both were brought on as substitutes in the match v Jordan and did their chances no harm bring “much-needed life” into the side.
One game into a tournament and Vince Rugari has gone for the jugular, saying that nothing has changed; when the Socceroos played this way under Ange Postecoglou, certain people called for Postecoglou's head; the Arnold second honeymoon is over; the only people who think they're a serious contender for the Asian title are themselves; and it's time for Arnold and the players to “earn their keep”.
Taylor Regan looks set to leave Adelaide United in the transfer window, and is expected to sign with a Malaysian side.
They said they wouldn't do it - release Bruno Fornaroli to another A-League side - but it seems that it may now happen, with a swap on the cards in exchange for Andy Keogh, whom City manager Warren Joyce coached as a youngster at Leeds United. Michael O'Halloran has also been released by City due to homesickness for Scotland. Keogh has scored 47 goals in 105 games for Perth Glory; Fornaroli has scored 54 goals in 76 games.
Lawrie McKinna and Ernie Merrick huff and puff over perceived unjust decisions and/or scheduling, but they've said it all before (they say that themselves) and nothing changes, so they're not even bothering anymore. One gets the idea they're just waiting out the season until there may be an independent entity to manage the A-League.
Western Sydney Wanderers
Alexander Baumjohann says Oriol Riera will bounce back ($) to put the club on track for the finals. Western Sydney Wanderers have created lots of chances this season, but have been unable to score with Riera's misfiring being seen as largely to blame. At a cost of $1.3 million, five goals in 11 games doesn't meet any sort of scoring benchmark.
An interesting read via David Davutovic that teenagers from Spain are better prepared for senior-level football because they are “exposed to stiffer competition earlier” than young Australian players, according to Carlos Perez Salvachua, Melbourne Victory's assistant coach and former Real Madrid youth coach. Salvachua trains Thomas Deng, and youth internationals Birkan Kirdar, Nicholas Sette and Josh Hope every day. He has previously coached Juan Mata (Manchester United), current Real Madrid duo Dani Carvajal and Nacho plus Javi Garcia (ex-Manchester City) over six years at Real. Salvachua says it's not only a bottleneck getting to higher levels of play in Australia, but there is a diluted junior system. He says that while the technical quality of players “is similar” at the same age, young Spanish players are competing every weekend from age 11.
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