Sunday, May 23, 2010


Memory Lane for Dazza against Hellas

Yeah, I know they're called South Melbourne now, the Hellas has been dropped in the name of progress, political correctness and in a bid to appeal to a broader audience. Which is crap. I knew plenty of people who had Hellas as their second team and they weren't all called Postecogelouopolus.

Time moves on if I haven't and South Melbourne, who I last saw play Wollongong Macedonia at Middle Park in 1991, they won 7-3, will next week be visiting Singapore to compete in the Singapore Cup.

It's probably fair to say the Aussies are the biggest ever team to grace the competition.

In one of those delicious twists of fate that make cup football so exciting they have been drawn against Gombak United. A side with an Aussie connection of their own.

They are coached by Darren Stewart, an NSL legend formerly of APIA Leichhardt while defensive midfielder Goran Subara has been earning rave reviews.

The Bulls have struggled so far this season to find any kind of consistency. No surprise when you are told you cannot use two of your best players and couple of games into the season. Kingsley Njokou and Gabriel Obatola had their permits terminated and had to find clubs anew leaving Stewart with only one striker, the injured Agu Casmir. After desperately trying to get Abbas Saad and Scott Ollerenshaw to come out of retirement he was left to sign players nobody else wanted.

In those circumstances 4th spot is a bloody good achievement though their goals for tally tells its own story. As does losing 1-0 at home to Balestier Khalsa, who would finish in the bottom half of a one team league, they went and drew 3-3 with runaway leaders Tampines Rovers

Gombak United FC 14 6 3 5 15 11 4 21

They are though defensively strong. The imposing Mamadou Bah is partnered by the highly thought of Obadin Aikhena, widely thought of as a future international. Obadin has impressed over the last few years with a series of classy performances for both Gombak United and the Young Lions but not just that. Everyone i speak with cannot say enough of his attitude off the field as well.

Up front Gombak will look to the timeless, ageless, Agu Casmir for goals and inspiration while this type of fixture against a truly big name would be a wonderful opportunity for Fazrul Nawaz to show what he is truly capable of.

For their part while South Melbourne have yet to set their league alight they are proving a tough nut to crack. They sit 7th in the 12 team Victoria State League but have suffered just two defeats all season.

7 South Melbourne 11 5 4 2 21 13 8 13

Like Gombak they have struggled to find any consistency. They beat Hume City (wow, a team named after a road?!) 6-0 then lost their next two games. Last time out they defeated Sunshine George Cross 3-1 which confuses the living bejeez out of me. I thought they had ditched all names that carried ethnic inference?

Anyway it promises to be a great evening in Singapore and South Melbourne can look forward to being blown away by the local's support for their heroes.

"cos remember this. Singapore was recently named the second best sports city in the world. 2nd after...Melbourne!

I should note that we were docked 6 points for a crowd disturbance, which is why we're so low on the table - though four other teams have alsi been docked points for various reasons. It's a great league we have, the VPL.
sounds great the ethnic stuff hasnt gone away yet?
It will take a while for it to go away at the lower levels - there's just too much dominance by ethnically backed clubs at senior level, because in general the 'Australian' clubs don't garner any significant fan/financial support in that area - they might have mountains of juniors, but they all end up playing for us wogs.

The deductions for all the clubs have surprisingly perhaps had nothing to do with any ethnic disturbances - three clubs were punished for not paying fines last year (a seriously major revenue stream for the Federation), one club for abuse/intimidating behaviour towards an official, and we got docked 6 points (after we appealed the previous finding, where we only copped a 3-0 loss as a result, instead of the 1-1) for a pitch invasion which went way overboard against Heidelberg when we equalised in the 91st minute at our last game for a couple of years at Lakeside.
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