There's only so many times you can give up two goal headstarts and expect to get the chocolates at the end of the match. Defensively, for whatever reason, we are a mess at the moment. Is it all due to the absence of Alan Kearney? Some may like to think so, but we'll have to wait until he comes back to get a clearer picture on that.
Going forward, at least in the first half, we weren't much better. What to several people looked like an obviously not ready yet Trent Rixon was selected to start ahead of Renco Van Eeken. Van Eeken apparently was suffering from the ill effects of last week's game, but still managed to come off the bench.
Meanwhile the game plan we had constructed for this season was thrown out the window, with long ball after long ball being sent forward. What was surprising about this is that in its own cackheaded way it worked - well, one time at least, when Rixon got what looked like the most un VPL-like of penalties. Take what you can get and all that. Still, we managed to get it back to 2-2, and looked the more likely side to score a winner, but that defensive frailty stung us again.
Some of the substitutions and tactical decisions seemed strange. I still don't get why Joe Keenan, who has no right foot, is being played on the right hand side. Also, why was Rhys Meredith taken off? He was the one troubling Hume the most out of any of our players. Why at 3-2 down did we bring on Tom Matthews, a defender? Well, at least we're scoring a few goals this season, which is a lot more entertaining than whatever we were trying to do last year. Are we in the A-League yet?
On Sunday the 19th of May South Melbourne's under 21s took on Hume City at Broadmeadows Valley Park. South were coming of a solid 2-0 win over last season's champions Richmond. The game started off very sloppy with both teams consistently turning over the football. South pushed forward in the 23rd minute and earned a free kick just outside the penalty area. Cartanos stepped up and curled it around the wall and into the top corner to give south a 1-0 lead half way through the first half.
South hung on for nearly the rest of the first half but controversially the ref played seven minutes of injury time in a half that had no injuries at all. Hume managed to equalise in the 51st minute of the first half with a classic counter attack that ripped through the heart of the South defence. 1-1 it was when the lads headed into the sheds at half time.
Hume come out in the second half meaning business, putting South under pressure from the get go and 10 minutes into the second half South's defence was breached again when the Hume City striker rounded the keeper and fired a shot into the frame, but Hume City had their left winger ghosting in and he got the follow up shot off the frame and made no mistake putting the ball into the back of the net to give Hume City a 2-1 lead.
As the half went on South just could not get into the game. South thought they earned themselves a penalty in the 80th minute when a Hume City defender was all over Anthony Giannopoulos and tackled him to the ground, only for the ref to wave the appeals away. Hume City then ran the ball down the other end and a throw in was awarded to South next to their defensive corner flag. In the following events that saw the South number 22 get a straight red card for telling the ref to fuck off. Three minutes later a Hume City player found himself sent off for an early shower when he received his second yellow card.
2-1 it finished for Hume City, a very disappointing loss for South - hopefully the boys can bounce back next week when they play the Oakleigh Cannons at Lakeside Stadium.
Steve From Broady's Canteen Review
On the 19th of May Hume City's canteen had its chance to shine and did not disappoint, producing a quality kebab ticking all the boxes. Hume managed to fill the kebab with lots of meat that's a big + and at a reasonable price. I have decided to give the Hume City canteen an 8 out of 10 which sees them take the lead off Bentleigh Greens on the VPL canteen championship leader board.
- Hume City 8/10
- Bentleigh Greens 7/10
- Southern Stars 2/10
- Green Gully 1/10
- Dandenong DQ
South food truck
Week 1 4.5
Room Without A View
I know that their new stand is half under construction and thus fenced off, but even so, the viewing experience on Sunday was seriously sub par. Watching the game from the opposite wing was nigh on impossible, thanks to large metal benches - and their metal scoreboard cousin - blocking huge chunks of the field of vision. The only place to watch the game from even semi-adequately was in the corners, as directly behind the goals they've erected these large black fences to stop balls flying off into some gosh forsaken quarry or something. I suppose the one saving grace was that for once the wind was entirely absent as factor.
In Space, No One Can Hear You Scream
It also doesn't help if you're not there. Hume's support has never been crash hot - and who are we to talk considering how our crowds have abandoned us - but their attendance was just pathetic on Sunday. There was a cheer, I suppose, for each of their goals, but the atmosphere was more like that of a pre-season friendly.
I Say, Good Sir, That Was An Outrageous Decision! I Demand That You Rescind It Immediately!
So security was sent over, because someone, somewhere had had enough of the foul language. To be fair, the supporters and security person handled the situation well. Cue then the calls of goshdarnit, dangnabbit and the like. My pick? Whoever blurted out 'what the dillyo?'.
The Ethics of Kicking the Ball Out of Play for an Injury
To sum up. When Gavalas was down hurt, Hume played on. Late in the game, they kicked th ball out because one of their players was cramping I guess. We refused to give the ball back. They got angry. We've pretty much been here before, so I don't think we need to cover this again.
Other Sports From Other Planets Department - Rugby Union
As a favour of sorts to Steve from Broady, who's been to several footy matches with me, even though he doesn't like the game - I think he mostly gets a kick out of watching me being sullen in a different context - I decided that it was time to make my debut at a rugby union match last Friday.
I bought my ticket from a scalper outside the gate. OK, he was probably just some guy with spare tickets, and honestly, I don't even know if I got a good deal or not, but man, did I feel like a badass by not buying a ticket at the gate.
Now I know the basic rules, some of the history, but otherwise don't give a toss about the game. I knew it was a Rebels' match I was going to, but I had no idea who their opponents were. Turned out it was the Stormers from South Africa. I was hoping that it would have been one of the Kiwi teams, as that would have increased the Maori and Islander count a bit, but there were a few Saffas in the crowd at our end, including one who waved his flag around like nobody's business.
Otherwise, it was classic case of 'who are these people and why are they here?' Part of that answer was that a lot of them in our vicinity seemed to be from private schools. Marcellin was one of them (I have no idea who they are; their website seems to indicate they have a rugby program, but no soccer, even though I've read elsewhere that they have or had a soccer program). I could tell they were from Marcellin because it was written on their hoodies.
There were some others behind us in maroon tracksuits with blue and yellow trim, but couldn't see what school they were from. And yes, there were blazers, and talk of whether one had ever been to Xavier or not. The rest of the crowd seemed to be made up of a certain upper middle class type of person, in that they wore tasteful scarves, cheered and occasionally jeered at the appropriate moments and mostly kept to themselves. Pretty boring.
Every time there was a break in play, there was music. Not just for injuries, not just after tries, but even every time the ball went out of play. And I thought the AFL was bad in this department. There was scarcely a free moment to think, and considering the copious amount of time lost due to as far as I could tell, not much at all, it was bloody irritating. The Mexican style trumpet at the start of each half also grated.
Though this was of course not a Wallabies game, it has always confused me as to why the upper classes, those descendants of the squattocracy, who watch this sport at a national level, have somehow chosen Waltzing Matilda as their song. It makes no sense. It's an anti-authoritarian song you goons. Anyway, the game of the upper class calling their Melbourne franchise the Rebels is also a bit of a laugh - more so when you see people displaying the Eureka flag as well. Jas H. Duke might have had something to say about that. Or perhaps not.
I used to think, perhaps in my own Victorian way, that the extra kicking in rugby union made the game more watchable than its league cousin. Seeing it in person made me realise how wrong I was. While I still think there's a place for kicking in rugby league - if they bring back unlimited tackles - the kicking in this match was terrible. More often than not, when the Rebels were resorting to kicking it was also unnecessary.
And the knock ons! So many knock ons! I suppose it was a combination of the quick play - somehow I had this idea that rugby union wasn't quite as fast as that - and the relative crappiness of the two teams on show. But back to the fast play for a moment. Rugby union on a pristine surface didn't make sense to me - shouldn't these matches be played on a mud pile? But there wasn't much time to ponder that because of the classic 'What was that for? Oh, you've got it on the screen' moments.
In soccer there seems to be a limited number of infractions, and thus you can pretty quickly get on with the game while abusing the referee for giving the opposite decision of what he should have awarded. In the footy, the umpires make it up as they go along, but at least provide clear signals most of the time as to what made up decision they actually decided on, and then we have the pantomime of everyone craning their necks towards the scoreboard for the replay to justify to ourselves that they got it wrong.
In rugby, it goes like this. Everyone gets in a big pile. At random moments during these piles - and not at every pile - the official in charge declares that some sort of infringement has happened. And apparently we look to the screen not for a replay, but for a text message telling us what it was for. Good luck to people like me for whom every one of these piles looks exactly alike.
It may be due to my own petty Victorianism, but I could not get this question out of my head. Why is this team in existence? Whose needs are they serving? Yes, I understand that as a city with a certain amount of people in it that we 'need' to have one of everything when it comes to sports franchises, but someone should have drawn the line here.
Finally, two things stood out above all else. Firstly, South needs to play at this stadium. Hurry up and make the grand final you clowns. And secondly, tries mean nothing to me. Seriously.
First They Came For Stunning Steve McKee, and I Said Nothing...
Apologies to everyone I bored with talk of last Saturday night's atrocious AFL umpiring.
Oakleigh, at home. They're a rabble at the moment apparently, but even if that's true, they're a rabble with some good players still in their team. Not to be taken lightly.