Red & Black Football

Fixing Wanderers, the way ahead on and off the field

Time for my 2 cents in this debacle we find ourselves in. Lowest attendances, poor results (not blaming Babbel) and the fans constantly being unsatisfied with every concept of this club.

First up, I’m no perfect angel when it comes to attending, and this seasons pushed it, with Sydney trains being so unbearably useless on match days. It doesn’t help when you’re over an hour away from a game, only for the train network to shit itself, due to bad weather or poorly planned schedules. But I have stuck to my guns, drove in or just simply hopped on a bus, to watch the team I love. If I simply gave up due to slight inconvenience, its 1 less face, 1 less voice in the stands.

First off, and this one annoys me to no end, stop blaming all our problems on Sydney Olympic Park. First season at Sydney Olympic Park, we played rather well, picked up some good talent, and unfortunately got knocked out of the semis. Sydney Olympic Park is not to blame, hell, look at Sydney at Kogarah, same seating plan (to an extent) as what ANZ is. SCG (also, to an extent) is much like spotless. People who aren’t showing up due to the fact that “oh I don’t like ANZ or Spotless” need to re-evaluate how much this team means to them. A stadium suddenly stops you attending games? And then I suppose, these people will come back to Parramatta acting like they were there the whole time I’ve said it before “those who won’t attend games now, only to keep their memberships for the sole purpose of getting a seat at Parramatta, should be the last ones in”.

Secondly, Babbel is not to blame, nor is Sotirio. Remember Gombau? Anyone? He inherited a team that he had barely any influence over. Halfway through the season, we hired Gombau only to have him sacked in the end, for the sole purpose of him not getting Popovic’s team into the finals. Shit go really, and after some embarrassing losses, some were calling for Babbels head as well. Imagine being so narrow-minded, that you can’t see how good Babbel will be for us, Baumjohann, Ziegler, Yeboah! The links he has in Europe, in England and Germany, all this makes him one of the best managers in the A-League. To play for Liverpool, Bayern, Hamburg SV, and to manage clubs like Stuttgart, Hertha Berlin, Fc Luzern, would only make him widely known in the football community throughout Europe. Why call for his head? when he has the knowledge and the people to be able to bring quality to our team. This, in my opinion, is the best manager the club has bought in, nevermind the other 2, Babbel has the potential to put us up the top again.

Thirdly, Lederer. This one’s hard, because we know there’s a salary cap (cough Sydney and City cough) but the players we have aren’t up to what we require to be top 4. I miss the days of Spiranovic and Topor running the backline, Shinji and Hersi running riot in the midfield, and the Juric/Santalab striking options. Don’t get me wrong, we have had good players from there on, Martinez, Antonis, Nicholls, Castelen, Santalab, Jamieson, Neville, just to name a few, but it seems we lost our recruiting touch, and a bit of magic, a bit of soul, a bit of what made this club great, the emphasis of being this club that represents the west. Our identity is lost, it needs to be rediscovered, not by an advertisement seen seldomly on facebook, but all around the west, flyers, first team meet and greets, ads on tv. The more acknowledgment the club gives out in the west, the more fans will be there through the hard times. Lederers got the money; there’s no salary cap on advertising.

Video Assistant Referee… 2 words, fuck off. I hate it, we all hate it, the rubbish that’s produced week in, week out by this pathetically run system is poor. Why get an Australian, fairly average referee, to be a 4th referee, is beyond me. The wrong calls are being made, the VAR is “looking” into every incident, and boy can I name a few, Brillante studs-up challenge against O’Doherty, last years Grand Final, Sotirio being offside in the first derby, last week against Perth, the two on Friday night, offside much? And the penalty… there’s nothing more to say. Its so time consuming and most of the time the decisions are wrong. Scrap it, it’s killing the game, with teams getting very favorable decisions, with some being suffocated by it, our club seems to be the most affected. You want the games to grow, and you want our referees to get better, scrap it, and replace the incompetent referees with it.

Lastly, it’s to the fans. Don’t give up on the team. We all know South West Sydney are coming into the competition, and with Sydney still doing so well, the bandwagon fans have truly fallen off, leaving us to see who our true fans are. We must go to the games, show the team that we are behind them, because when success comes, and trust me, it will, it will be a sweeter taste to those who stuck around, as supposed to the fans who switched sides only to come back. Same can be said about the fans who only bring their jersey out on Derby¬†Day, or when the teams only doing well, they won’t feel the same highs we will go through, as they haven’t been dragged through the lows.

Forever Red & Black, you can bet your life on that!

Hamish O’Rourke

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply