Thursday, November 15, 2007


That's better

After the disasters of Syria and PSIM I am now back to feeling all gooey after some wonderful moments in Liga and Copa Indonesia.

The Persija performance against PSM was impressive. Bambang & co., can feel disappointed they didn't put the tie to bed first time round, they had the chances. With a lot of debate around the world regarding foreigners it's worth noting Robertinho's rising learning curve and at the back Herman Abanda's impassive consistancy. Up front the all-Indonesian strike force of Bambang and Aliyudin may not get served in the bars of South Jakarta without ID but with 30 goals between them they are proof expensive imports are not always the answer.

Budi Sardosono also showed Indonesian players have the skill and know how to match the best of them. He has already reminded me of Peter Beardsley, comfortable on the ground, an eye for goal and an intelligent brain. Against Persib, the team with the best away record in the league, he showed Henryesque moments, cooly beating the keeper in one on ones. I would strongly advise every Liga Indonesia club who aspires to the highest level get their butts down to Kediri and look at the job coach Daniel Roekito has done there and see what happens behind the scenes to allow this to happen.

Christian Gonzalez may well be the player of the season and the top scorer yet again but Budi deserves all the accolades he gets...and some. He may not feature down the centre so much when Gonzalez is playing but his performance on Tuesday showed that anything foreigners can do, Indonesians can too.

Yesterday saw Pelita Jaya, Persema Malanag and a downpour disappear off my screen but not before PJ took the lead with a nicely taken goal on 28 minutes. Playing football is difficult enough when the bumpy pitches are dry. Magnify that by a factor of 10 when the playing surface is under inches of water. Add a monsoonal downpour and you can forgive teams for either a) hoofing the bloody thing or b) saying sod that for a game of football and retreating back into the dressing room.

That PJ and Persema tried to play football, and I mean short passes, quick movement, is either a credit to their coaches' ethos or proof they have no plan B. Whatever the truth the way Jerkovic controlled the ball on the 6 yard line, turned inside and slid the ball home deserves greater exposure.

Today we have Persebaya. Will we get more of the beautiful game or will cynicism rear its ugly head?

Persebaya: Beautiful football. Didn't you see the match? 90 minutes of short passes, quick run, and hardly even a single rough tackles (which we often witness in many other matches).
The pitch is smooth and in good condition. That's the main reason behind such beautiful passing displays by both teams. If only we can get rid of bad pitches in Indonesia, players quality can raise further.
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