Saturday, 9 February 2008

One last bit of 2007 clearing out

At around about this time every year, people and pundits all over the place start making predictions they will never go back and have a look at. Most say it's all in good fun, but really it's just a dreadful waste of time. Therefore South of the Border will buck the trend and avoid making any list predictions for the coming season whatsoever. It's a hard habit to kick, and South of the Border stands in solidarity with all those who suffer from this disease. What I will do however is hand out way overdue awards for last season. Seeing as this blog did start last year, and the new season hasn't started yet and we're still catching up and all, it's totally allowed.
  • Player of the year: Ricky Diaco. The bloke sadly lacked consistent support, but even then he showed he was a class above most of the year. His free kick against Oakleigh is already legendary, but his in-close work was a joy to watch, particularly his skinning of defenders on the byline.
  • Youth player of the year: Mitchell Langerak. Young keeper, came in with an unsettled defence, and did a more than decent job. While he still has problems with low balls and coming off his line, his aerial work and his ability in marshaling the defence were very impressive.
  • Goal of the year: Ramazan Tavsancioglu against Whittlesea Zebras. Yes we lost this one 3-2, but I cannot do enough justice to the brilliance that was Rama's goal, so I'll let George Kouroumalis' poetry do the rest:
South equalised moments later, with what can be described as a contender for goal of the season by Ramazan. He produced a strong defensive tackle, reclaimed possession of the ball and began to dash up the right hand touch line. After stepping past one defender and spinning past another, he hit a speculative and intentional 35 yard rocket towards the goal, with the ball swinging and dipping into the top right hand corner and over the fully-stretched Gerohristodoulou, sending the South fans into blue delirium.
  • Best performance over a whole match: The home win against Oakleigh 5-2. The 2nd half in particular was an absolute joy to watch. These two teams have turned it on repeatedly in recent times, but that game will be hard to top. Diaco's free kick was merely the cherry on top of a great contest. Sadly South never reached that level of play for the rest of the season.
  • Best period of play during the season: The first 20 minutes or so against Heidelberg at home in round 1. Despite the goalkeeping fuck-ups, the team was that shit hot that even the most boring and relentless cynics proclaimed it as an excellent NSL-era standard. Perhaps if we'd won that game things would have gone differently.
  • Best away game: Sunshine George Cross. It was rainy, windy, cold, slippery but the dedication of the fans that day (and the win of course) made it totally worth it.
  • Best call on the terraces: After we re-took the lead against Oakleigh one wit said, "Hey Turnbull, you didn't even get to finish your smile". Concise, precise, and understated.
  • Chant of the year: Colombo's chant at the game against Preston. The police were doing nothing to move the Preston fans from outside the perimeter fence, as they have the power to do so, much to the annoyance of the South faithful. Can't remember the exact way it went, something like "I thought we were major events, why are the skops behind the fence..." there was more to it, of course, but it had this ramshackle rhythm to it that was just off this planet.
Don't forget, Family Day on tomorrow. Jersey Presentation night on Friday. Round 1 away to the Bergers on Sunday week. All which of which hopefully mean the end for now of these time killing pieces.

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