Thursday, January 22, 2009


Chinese New Year and Australia

According to the Indonesian FA the Socceroos will be arriving on four separate flights for their game against Indonesia next Wednesday!

Two groups will be landing on the Sunday and two more on the Monday with the manager Pim Verbeek arriving 48 hours before the kick off.

My pub team used to do this, especially for away games. We'd set off from our homes, pick up other players and rendezvous at various before and after the kick off but always before the bar opened.

Of course I'm not suggesting Australia are sending a pub team. An inexperienced one yes and I'm sure Verbeek would agree a not particularly well prepared one. But I think, though I have no confirmation about this, that the staggered flights may be linked to Chinese New Year and not to any slapstick planning downunder.

Also there is the added fact that the players are spread round the country which doesn't help with logistics.

But this lack of preparation could come back to haunt the Aussies. Why didn't they come over and acclimatise?

Another spanner in the works is the Australians ongoing World Cup qualifying campaign that sees them going to Jaoan in a few weeks time. Simply put the Asian Cup ain't that high on the list of priorities...

The Aussies will be fine. I really can't see them finishing behind two of Indonesia, Oman and Kuwait.

With qualifiers taking a break until November, there's plenty of time for Oman to come down to Earth and circumstances to change.
Not sure of the effect of CNY on bookings availability - i guess it could have soem effect tho.

I suspect the major reason why they won't all arrive on Sunday is because some of them will be playing that day in the A-League final round (round 21, which ends the season and is the last round before finals).
None of the clubs would have wanted to release their players early (and I cant see Verbeek insisting on it, given he has not called up any of the overseas players for exactly that reason - it isn't a FIFA game date).

Yes - they will definitely be underprepared - and very inexperienced. Dont know if you read any of the Australian football news sites, but there have been a couple of interesting pieces in the last 2 days re this game and the Aussie preps for it - will get you to them.

I still think (even after watching a brief video highlight of the AFF Thailand-Indonesia game) that Australia will be doing well to come out of this game with a point.

Am hoping to get to the Kuwait game on 5 March - finally Canberra has been allocated an international fixture!
they re transiting singapore hence i just inferred the cny link...

hope the canberra game goes well. i once saw canberra play inter monaro saddo that i am!
10 of the Aussie squad are playing either tonight or Saturday night - the other 11 are not playing til either 5pm Sunday (Sydney v Newcastle) or 7pm Sunday (Central Coast v Adelaide). I presume all 11 (including the 4 from Adelaide) will depart Sydney and won't be able to get a flight to Singapore until Monday morning at the earliest. So I guess they can probably expect to arrive in Jakarta mid to late-Monday arvo.

Quite probably explains why the team management may have knocked back the offer to practice at the match stadium on Monday.
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