Gold Stars and Red Cards – Wanderers vs Sydney United 58 (FFA Cup Round of 16)

A-League 2019 FFA Cup Round of 16 vs Sydney United 58 28/08/2019 Campbelltown Stadium
7-1 WIN

New season, new format to disassociate from shameless appropriators. Welcome to ⭐ Gold Stars (good) and 📕 Red Cards (bad) as we review all 75 minutes of the second competitive match for the new look Wanderers of the 2019/20 season as WSW take on NSL/NPL heavyweights Sydney Croatia United 58 in a Western Sydney derby in the FFA Cup Round of 16.

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Early Domination
It was definitely a sign of intent when the lineup was released. A 3-5-2 with Mo Adam getting a start alongside Yeboah up top. The bench looked thin but this formation from Marcus Babbel basically told the opposition and spectators “we’re aiming to win this in the first half.”
Babbel has spoken all week about how we have to be on top of our game lest we get caught napping. This game was a good test to see where we are – even though we have a few injuries and a couple squad spots yet to be filled. Instead of struggling to beat our opposition or giving them too much respect, Babbel set up the team in an aggressive way and we didn’t let them get out of first gear in the opening 20 minutes. Every loose ball was ours, forcing mistakes and being positive in the final third. These are good signs for the upcoming A-League season.

Positive Formation
Two games in a row now we’ve seen Kamau and Georgevksi deployed as wingbacks with a back 3. Its doing wonders for Kamau’s game as now he looks to be a handy member of the team compared to last year’s stuttering campaign. He is finding acres of space and has had a hand in a few goals now – either scoring or assisting.
Georgevski likewise. He is loving the open space in front of him and was rewarded with a double. If you took a shot of alcohol every time he cut to his right and left the SU58 defender for dead, you’d be currently getting your stomach pumped at your local hospital.

📕 Not at Edensor
We know why this match wasn’t at Edensor Park – water damaged artificial pitch. But the potential spectacle of this match was lost when it was hosted all the way in the middle of nowhere ie Campbelltown. Great showing by both sets of supporters but can you imagine what the atmosphere would have been like if this was held at Sydney United’s home? It would have been a cauldron of fire, literally. Dare I say, the attendance would have been higher too.

Schwegler
Pirmin Shwegler will be our best signing this season. The difference a vastly experienced defensive midfielder makes is astounding. It is what we’ve been lacking for years. He shores up the shop, is a rock in defence, wins loose balls and even assists goals. He also allows Best Baccus to be more creative and not have to play a game he isn’t suited to. The difference between our midfield last season and the last 2 games is like chalk and cheese. If you have someone breaking up attacks and helping with positive transition, it’s one step closer to the top of the table.

Lopar Again
Many of us bemoaned “wasting” a Visa spot on a goalkeeper. Lopar heard us and has proven us wrong every single week. Every week he is pulling out amazing saves to keep us in the game or deny the opposition getting back into the game. How good is it to not feel nervous every time the ball goes into our box?
A goalkeeper like this wins you points throughout the season and those few points sometimes are the difference.
He also knows when to leave his box and not get sent off. So that’s a bonus too.

📕 Soft penalty
Nothing says #MagicOfTheCup than a soft penalty for minimal contact and a dive. Gotta keep the Magic going and hope for a comeback. Ref was looking directly at the incident too. When Brenton Speed and Andy Harper even question the penalty against WSW, then you know something isn’t right with the call. It staged a mini comeback for SU58 which was neutered after their own goal made it 4-1 in WSW favour.

📕 F*** FoxSports
So we’re winning 5-1, cruising, on our way to our biggest ever competitive win. FoxSports in all their wisdom decide to cut away from the final 15 minutes to watch 2 bottom dweller A-League sides battle it out to a penalty shootout. Ok, a more interesting tie, this game was done. But because the WSW game was the “main game” on 505, we lost all chance of any avenue to watch the end of the game. The whole point of Kayo, MyFootballApp etc is choice. Fox removed that choice entirely by feeding the WSW game with the Brisbane v Central Coast vision. In essence that game had two dedicated feeds to it for 15 minutes. Why are we paying for our subscriptions again? And content providers wonder why the public pirates their content.
We missed Georgevksi’s second goal and Majewski’s bomb. It’s a disgrace and shows contempt to the viewer who tuned into that match. I was livid and had to be told on numerous occasions by my SO to stop yelling and swearing (a little guy that has never seen WSW lose in his life was feeding).
Hey Fox, the reason why your “ratings” are down is because your panel of “experts” are repetitive, cliched and boring, your commentators are worse and you pull bullshit stunts like this.
Just waiting for the excuse of “the intern did it.”

7th Heaven
Our previous ever best win was 6-1 vs Adelaide all the way back in December 2012. Finally we can update the record books with this huge 7-1 win. On to the Quarter Finals we go with our biggest win in our short history. An emphatic display from the entire team which should give confidence to the squad and supporters in the coming weeks and months. I understand that SU58 have played a tonne of games in the past few weeks and have the NPL Grand Final this weekend, but you can only play what is in front of you. In the past we’ve struggled against teams we shouldn’t have so this was a positive game and #mentality from the team.
Next up is Melbourne City away on our journey to the domestic treble.

See you space cowboy…

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