The Best and Worst of Wanderers vs Sydney FC (Rd 2)

A-League 2018/19 Round 2 vs VAR FC 27/10/2018 Sydney Cricket Ground
0-2 Loss

In true FFA fashion, we have a derby way too early in the season to try and get the metrics up before the weekly grind of Central Coast vs Nix on a Sunday afternoon. We head to the Sydney Cricket Ground to prove there are worse views than Spotless.

If you haven’t already, also check out Markus Babbel’s post match press conference where he questions everything wrong with Australian football at the moment:
Babbel Press Conference Sydney Derby

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Worst – Ziggler Still Missing
Ziggler was named in the extended squad during the week which I’m not sure if it had any truth in it or was mind games from Babbel. When Vedran wasn’t 100% fit he made the bench. Ziggler wasn’t on the bench means he isn’t ready to take to the pitch yet. It’s a shame because we need him.
Again the midfield partnership of (don’t call me) Baby Baccus and Mahazi didn’t instil confidence in me compared to SFC’s O’Neill and Brillante. Sotirio gets another start much to the chagrin of the Wanderers faithful. He obviously does enough every week at training to keep getting selected. So fans should really be questioning the likes of Kamau and Fitzy on why they aren’t forcing their way into the Starting XI.

Best – Got Any Blacker?
Let’s start off with the obvious. That black kit is fire emoji fire emoji fire emoji. The launch coincided with the W-League opening round at Club Marconi and from all reports was a great event. I was worried the kit would have been some mismatched pattern crazy avant- garde conception piece but when I saw the reveal, I was sold. Just so classy all round. The gold WSW logo looking schmick. Seeing the entire kit on the players at the game sold me even more. Since JD is the sponsor for the away and 3rd kit, I expect we’ll be seeing this kit make a few appearances this season.
I suspect they’ll sell like hotcakes too. Mine is getting hand delivered this week when ATB records next (Shoutout to Copa Tats for hooking a brother up).

Worst – Defensive Lapses
The 3 goals WSW have conceded this season have been from poor judgement in our own box. All 3 goals have been defensive clearance errors that have been pounced on by the opposition.
Within 4 minutes WSW were a goal down in the derby. A clearing header that lands right at a SFC foot who puts it back into the box. An argument of offside (SFC don’t have VAR reviews, that’s crazy talk), Vedran makes a massive save that goes right back to La Fondre and we’re down before the game has even started.
Within 10 minutes of the second half starting a similar instance. Instead of clearing our lines, the players opted to pass around in their own box when under immense pressure by Sydney. A misplaced pass (again) and Sydney capitalises. Its schoolboy errors through and through.
We can complain all we want about the decisions (trust me, a rant is incoming) but if we can’t sort out these basic defending errors we aren’t winning any games.
Especially since we’re shooting blanks (mostly) at the other end of the pitch.

Worst – Allowing Sydney To Waltz Through
I saw it time and time again in the first half especially. Sydney play a very direct style of football. They would win the ball in midfield, and within 3 passes they are in our box having a shot. Ninkovic, Brosque, La Fondre combination attacking our right flank (Risdon) and succeeding every single time. La Fondre would drop a bit deeper to lose a centre back marker, then ghost in between Hamill and Tongyik. He’d lose his marker more often than not and test Vedran.
It’s not good enough. Sydney’s bullying tactics in midfield are still working and the refs are mostly letting them get away with it. WSW needed to come up with an answer for their speed and constant forward passes. The game changed in the second half and we had more of the ball, but it was easy for SFC to ease off a bit when they were 2-0 up.

Best – The Fires of Babbel
Forever etched in our memories is Markus Babbel throwing his jacket to the ground like he was in North Parra Maccas when Bulut ate the last chicken McNugget. Telling the ref the decision was a disgrace and getting a straight red card for it. A lap of honour in front of his adoring public. Never forget.

I’m not sure why he didn’t get a yellow. The refs in this country have such thin skin that if you question their incompetence they get offended so much they need to have a power trip. Dissent on the pitch is a yellow card. But Babbel gets a straight red? No wonder he kicked the shit out of the Foxtel sign. He was basically in the midst of a performance art piece symbolising A-League fans cancelling Foxtel because the A-League has lost the plot.

Babbel talks mentality and belief. Well if the players can’t see the passion he shows for his position, then they can all go elsewhere. When your boss shows that passion after a bullshit call, you best follow suite. Babbel won a lot of fans that night. We love his honesty in interviews. Now we love his passion. He just needs to get the players showing the same and producing results. Then we can say the new era of Western Sydney Wanderers has truly begun.

I also find it interesting the foreign coaches are the ones really speaking out about the terrible officiating. Friday night it was Kurz, and on Saturday it was Babbel. They are both probably reevaluating their life decisions to come to this tinpot backwater league where the rules are made up ad-hoc.

WSW wanting all the records.

Worst – Chris Beath: The Pretender
It’s been discussed and raged ad nauseam on social media and all over the football community. Roly’s disallowed goal for whichever reason Chris Beath made up at the time.
But Beath’s wiping off Roly’s goal was just one of many poor decisions throughout the game, which was hardly surprising because he is always terrible.

Rhyran Grant should have received a 2nd yellow card for a late studs up challenge. But this is Sydney FC and Grant who seem to always get away with dirty challenges unpunished.

Sydney FC’s first goal was never looked at for any hint of offside or Mahazi supposedly getting blocked from the play. I’d show the replay but Sydney only shows the finish in their tweet:

Watch SFC’s video of the goal where they show no build up play at all.

AB10 was getting hacked all game and was not protected at all. He only was granted a few freekicks seemingly at random. I lost count of the amount of times he was fouled and Sydney won the ball to start their counter attack. The worst one was the foul on the edge of the box which could have been either a free kick at worst or a penalty at best. Waved away by Beath yet again. Not reviewed. Yet in the FFA Cup Semi Final, Sydney were granted a penalty for something much less soft. Go figure. Babbel mentions both of these incidents in the post match press conference. He is baffled with some of the decisions in these two fixtures, seemingly always favouring SFC. Welcome to the A-League Markus.

The disallowed goal was an absolute crock. There is no way about it. The only pundit saying it was correct is Robbie Slater. Is anyone surprised? He is Sydney FC through and through and he is not even hiding his bias anymore.

The linesman is 2 metres away and doesn’t signal for offside nor a foul. Yes Sotirio was offside but did not interfere with play. Zullo ran into a stationary object. This was before the 60th minute. The momentum was shifting. Those saying “oh it would have been 2-1 instead of 2-0” know nothing of momentum in football. The goal stands, AB10 gets a penalty and suddenly its 2-2 with 15 to go.

Beath signals for a foul, then later says it was for offside. So which one was it? Does this guy even know the rules of the game? He killed the game with that decision and after Babbel was sent off, all WSW fans could have walked with him. But instead we got louder. Like we used to every time we went down.

Here is an even worse example of an offside player actually interfering with play. Remember this when Bobo blocked a defender and the goal was allowed to stand? So what’s the difference here? Oh, it was VAR FC.

Yes Sydney has dominated on the pitch for a number of years. But there has been so many decisions against WSW that its getting extremely tiresome. A few incorrect decisions off the top of my head to remind everyone:
– Handball by Sydney seen by everyone but the ref. Polenz catches the ball expecting the whistle. Instead is penalised and a penalty is given against WSW.
– Ibini standing in front of Covic in an offside position, clearly interfering with play and the goalkeeper’s view when SFC scored. Goal allowed to stand.
– Sotiro header right on half time disallowed for offside, despite replays showing he was clearly onsite.
– Zullo handball in the box missed completely despite the ball changing direction. Goal kick awarded. No penalty, not even a corner.
– Carney diving in the box, looking for a penalty and VAR gives it.

And I’m sure there are plenty more I’m forgetting at the time of writing.

But sure. Sydney FC fans will point out a non penalty in the dying minutes of ONE game over and over again. It was a couple years ago and ruined their invincible season. That ONE decision was a travesty and they got screwed damn it!!!11!!

I’m so over going to these fixtures which seem to be decided before a ball is kicked. Being better on the pitch is one thing, but when every decision constantly goes against you no wonder the players and fans are deflated.

Best – No More Away Games
I was against going to this game for so long. I told myself all through preseason that I was not going to this game. I was sick of the price gouging (cost me $90 for 2x active bay tickets in the rain last season) and knowing it was at the SCG, why would I pay for a worse view than my crappy home games?
Then the discount was announced and it was $25 for a ticket. I still didn’t half didn’t want to go but ended up getting a ticket.
Safe to say, that’s my last away derby for a very long time. I’m not going back to the SCG, and I’m not parting with my hard earned for any other away games. Why should I? I’ve travelled the country and the world watching the Wanderers. Many of us have. When the league is run the way it is, when the officiating is getting worse and worse and deciding the outcomes of games, why should I waste my time and money travelling to these games?
I’m going to Mudgee in a couple weeks and that will be my last away trip for the foreseeable future. And I know I’m not the only one coming to this decision.
SFC fans troll all they want that the away fans aren’t filling their stadium for them. I’m sure they can entice some of their 600,000 fans to show up one day with another band I’ve never heard of to play during the warm ups.

See you space cowboy…

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