A lot of my observations have already been made.
WSW: It is obvious that there are many new players in the squad who will need time to gel, work out combinations and work on who is marking who. The first half was very poor. We made an average CCM team (but much improved on last year) look good. Communication was severely lacking and we were exposed with the back 3 too often. Against any of the frontrunners, we will be rightly punished if we play like that. We also had zero creativity in the CAM position, Sullivan looked out of his depth (is he more of a CM?), Grozos showed some real promise when he came on. As many have said, Meier was very underdone, but you can see he has quality. The big question is whether he is best utilised off the bench as he lacks pace and is obviously unfit. But he's tactically great and seems to have a great shot and eye for goal (from watching him in the warm up). Very impressed with Schweigler, he'll be an absolute boss. Sign him up for a couple of years! And Lopar, although giving me plenty of heart in mouth moments, was much more assured in goals. We were improved in the second half and held on for a (lucky) win.
Refereeing: thought the Iranian referee did really well. He allowed the game to flow, warned players where necessary and didn't fall for some of the gamesmanship. The time it took for VAR/the ref to make the VAR review call, and then him running off to view on a little screen, is ridiculous. The implementation of VAR in general (and particularly in this country) is very poor. If we must have it, it needs serious improvement (personally, I'd prefer it scrapped entirely).
Game day experience: How good is it to be home? It felt so good to travel down to Parra as we did for years before the last 3 years of hell. There was a real buzz in the city again. The pubs were busy, there was a stream of people walking together to the game, happy to be back in Parra. The stadium is phenomenal. Although it sucks to have one side of the stadium virtually dead due to corporates. When the RBB were in full swing and the stands got involved, it really started to feel like home. The derby is going to absolutely heave. I truly believe that if the game had been played at Homebush we would've drawn or lost. You could see the team feed off the momentum and having the fans close to the action and behind them 100% gave them the extra bit they needed to hold on.