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About echidna

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  1. This was one of the best away performances I can recall - and under very difficult conditions with the constant wind and rain. There was unrelenting commitment and pressure throughout, but the quality of passing was generally superb, even if the 'Nix did not contribute much in that regard. Baumjohann was the fulcrum for much of the good and great that happened, but none of the first 11 had an even mediocre day. Well done lads! Did I predict it? No! Just another good reason why, even after many decades of watching Oz football, I never bet a cent on any result! However, I bet that if we keep committing and playing like that, we will finish nearer the top rather than the bottom of the table!
  2. It is interesting to compare our 30,000 capacity with what is happening with the MLS in the US. Overwhelmingly, they have gone with 'soccer-specific' stadiums, with the newer ones at least part-owned by the club owners. This is a medium to long-term benefit as they maximise their income - an aspect we can not yet afford. As a consequence, most new and planned MLS stadiums have lower capacities: LAFC's 2018 Banc of California Stadium: 22,000 Opened April 18, 2018. Has 34deg stands (steepest in MLS - how will we compare?) and Safe Standing Rails in the North End for the '3252' Supporter Group. DC Utd's Audi Field: 20,000 First game: July 14, 2018. Has 'bleachers' for 1,500 supporters. Minnesota Utd's Allianz Field: 19,400 (future expansion to 24,474). To open Feb/Mar 2019. FC Cincinnati have a 25,000 stadium set to open when they enter the MLS in 2019; FC Nashville plan the closest to our capacity with a 27,500-30,000 one for their entry in 2020, along with Beckham's Miami. Of course none of these can match the rip-roaring success of Atlanta Utd's 51,000 plus current average at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, a ground they can only open up to its full 72,000 capacity (currently) 5 times a year. Each time so far, they have broken the 70,000 mark. Check out the Atlanta Utd website for all the colour and sound of this other red and black sensation. Also, see si.com (Sports Illustrated) Potential future soccer stadiums in America, for plenty of photos and information. Ok, we will not be able to match the Atlanta crowds in size, nor have a football-specific venue, but Western Sydney Stadium is shaping up as one of football's better homes.
  3. I am hoping for a Tues 24 July or next day game in Darwin, as I will be there (with wife) on those evenings at the end of an already booked holiday that starts at Uluru - if I am lucky, it could all work out. Will have to pack my Wanderers shirt!
  4. echidna

    Coach and Staff Thread 2018/19

    Markus Babbel! Wow, very interesting! 😁
  5. Maybe not Mack, but he is certainly one hell of a player! There surely would be at least one Marquee spot we should make available to have a chance of signing him. Of the four possible signings that Gremio mentioned, I have most doubt about Kamau. Fitzgerald will always give 110%, but has been given very little opportunity by the coach, who would vie with Arnold for coming up with the most predictable selections and substitutions. It is as if he has a closed mind when it comes to players changing/improving. No wonder some want to leave. My biggest concern is for my (traditionally) all-time favourite WSW player. Sadly, I do not think Mark Bridge is anywhere near the player and influence he was a couple of seasons ago. Unfortunately, past a certain point, players (and probably human beings too) do not keep getting better.
  6. Great to see you are, as wendybr suggested, getting out there and 'smelling the roses', Goat. There are a lot of positive and beautiful things in our world - we just have to recognise and then focus upon them - and they will pull us through the darker times all people experience on occasions.
  7. echidna

    Squad Development 2017/18 Part 2

    I think Tongyik is a great signing. He has strength, height, skill and vision (as evidenced last season, and with the Olyroos). I think it is ridiculous that he has not even been given one minute in 17/18. There must surely be more to it than just playing ability - perhaps a personality clash with Joyce and significant difference in expectations. From what I have seen so far, he is a more accurate passer of the ball than Thwaite - though such a challenge would not be difficult!
  8. echidna

    Nix Played Off The Park

    Ikonomidis was very good and he is also a charming and personable character. For me, Roly had his best game in our colours, tackling, mopping up and distributing superbly, with an energy and vigour I cannot recall seeing before. Agree that the Nix were surprisingly poor, but when we control a game so comprehensively with barely a Baccus in sight, we have to be heading in a reasonable direction. ...Now if only a certain central defender could bring a smile to my face by demonstrating he can regularly pass a ball accurately, I would surely have nix about which to complain!...
  9. echidna

    Dropped Points In Wellington

    I am sure that I have never seen a Wanderers side play the ball back so often - as they did, particularly in the first half against Wellington. This possession for possession's sake and 'patience' is killing football in this country. This was never more evident than in the game I have just finished watching in which our Under 23s lost 1-0 to Vietnam. Here is a team of realisably experienced and talented players who were psychically stronger and almost universally taller than their opponents (Baby Baccus was like a giant by comparison), one that held 75% or more of possession and repeatedly played the ball back, playing 'patient' football. Surprise, surprise, the Vietnamese played it tight and smart and we did not play to our strengths of height, power and speed. We need to teach players in this country to push forward and only turn the ball back when it is impossible to do otherwise. Players must learn the skills of turning sharply, accelerating, laying the ball off, moving quickly off the ball and playing passes that bypass a defensive line - such as a well-weighed through ball. The way we are going, this negative and patient approach to playing football will kill club and national team performance and retard the prospects of any number of potentially talented players we seek to produce. I would love to think we could play a different style, but I doubt it. Interesting to see that the two most attacking teams are at the top of the A-League ladder!
  10. echidna

    Strikers Fire In Brisbane

    Popa would never have played both Santa and Riera - effectively as a dual strikeforce - but I think it worked really well. You could see the joy they themselves felt in combining with the first goal, rather than having one on the field and the other on the bench. In fact, I think they are a great combination: both can lay off a high ball, but it is rare for a lone striker to have someone with the strength, determination and ball control who can take advantage of such a lay-off. Each can feed off the other. Scott was certainly excellent when he came on in what was effectively a 4-3-3 and this too put Brisbane under pressure. If we are going to play this way under Gombau, I will take it any day. Sure, there was some sloppy passing out from the back - and Herd was lucky to not be sent off - but overall, it was pleasing. I think the VAR did not dare review the Italian noodle's challenge on Santa, for it would have been a penalty and a send-off, with the result that the most combustible coaching combination in the A-League would have needed urgent medical attention! [I think it was ignored to try to make up for the Gamiero 'offside' in the first half. This is not the way things should be done...]
  11. echidna

    Jets Tear Wanderers To Shreds

    This performance put the win of the previous week into context - it was a merely a minor improvement that has proved to be a one-off. We cannot and will not improve significantly until we become more aggressive, forward-playing and fast in our passing. Right now it looks like the players don't believe in whatever philosophy Josep espouses. At this rate things are only heading one way, and fast!
  12. After that episode, EmMac is the only one 'who can cut it!'
  13. echidna

    FFA Cup 2017

    The ball boy's job was to give the ball back asap - he did not, and appeared to try to hang on to it. He should not have been rewarded with Zullo's medal. Just another example of how stupid our society is getting when improper and reckless acts are lauded and the wrong person is blamed. Marrone should have been a bit more careful, but being Sydney in this modern age, a law firm will be quick on the phone to urge the ball boy's father to sue for assault. No wonder the kid was smiling afterwards.
  14. echidna

    Los Reyes Del Empate

    Riera lost possession on quite a few occasions - it was not his best game. It is good to see players passionate about remaining on the field, but his reaction to Gombau's move was rude and unnecessary. Simply, he was not up to his usual standard. Santa has been a regular scorer for this club in the past, but has had precious little field time. It was reasonable to give him what only ended up being a paltry 15min (though much better than the Aloisi brothers [and others]) who put players on with a minute to go at best! If anything, it was a message from Gombau that he was not going to have an unnecessary pro-Spanish bias. Evolution takes time. We were a bit lucky to escape with a point, but let's not judge too early.
  15. Thanks WSWBoro - you are a champ, even if a few of the teams you support are less than championship material! [This is actually very praiseworthy!]