Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Vaughan Coveny 100th goal tribute video

ZOMG! SMFC TRIVIA NIGHT!

Check out the flyer which is far too big to fit within this blog's page format. Oh yeah, Trivia Night! Now, I've got a bad feeling about this, and I'll tell you why. People cheat at these things. Sad but true. It should be considered a war crime. It's not yet, but we're working on it. If not done properly it could very well include questions that any prole could answer just from the time they spent watching Underbelly when they should have been reading a book. Imagine if they let me do the questions... phwoar, I'd be in obscure reference overdrive.

If not, and I have to become a participant, I put forward my offer thus. I have been in three trivia nights. I have won two. The other one was rigged, as it was an effete lefty thing with next to no sport questions, effectively cheating the table with the only expertise on that topic of victory. Yes, I'm still bitter. The Shane Warne Appreciation Society and Team Cindy should be joined by PPPC (a play on CCCP... you know, Союз Советских Социалистических Республик... if you don't get it don't worry, Channel 10 reckons you're Generation Y and should be answering questions like who was the drummer in 90s supergroup Nirvana? Answer? It's a stupid question with so many fucked up assumptions as to render it fucking retarded) in the Paul Mavroudis Trivia Night Champion Pantheon. So, I'm taking offers of people who want to piggy back on probably the surest thing going around that night.

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Freaken (Female) Six Goal Thriller - South Melbourne 3 Ashburton 3

Most people could find better things to do on a cold, windy, rainy Sunday... or so they tell me. Me, I decided to head down to Lakeside to check out the SM Women's game against Ashburton, and I was not disappointed. Well, mostly.

South had the advantage of a strong wind in the first half and had plenty of opportunities, most of which went wide across goal narrowly missing, and one that was turned out by the Ashburton keeper. The visitors made South pay for their missed opportunities by opening the scoring after the South keeper hesitated in coming out for a loose ball in the box. South hit back not long after though, so 1-1 at the break. I went off to get a souvlaki, the bloke watching the game with me made some comment about chewing gum, or chewiness, but the thing wasn't that bad today... still not a fan of sinew, but what can you do?

The wind died down a fair bit in the 2nd half, robbing Ashburton of its full power. They still managed to dominate possession, even if they didn't create too many clear cut chances. South struggled to clear their defensive lines much less launch an attack, and it seemed inevitable that South would concede. And so they did. And then another. And at 3-1 the game looked as good as lost.

Enter Laura Spiranovic. I still didn't think they could pull it back, but they got it back to 3-2, and the clock ticked away painfully. The referee decided this was the time to become an absolute twit by enforcing the foul throw rule - fair enough, foul throws should be penalised - but also making sure that players from both sides took their free kicks and throws from exactly the spot he thought they should take them from. And so combining these two elements, we had a fairly farcical passage of play lasting Chronos knows how long of infraction upon infringement until eventually one fan became so frustrated that he decided to tell the referee what for from the back of the Papasavas/Marmaras Stand (apparently the grandstand's name).

Anyway, time ticking away, Ashburton running down the clock, playing for time, South commit what I think will be their last attack of the game, and I'm about to give the game up. Except we make one last roll of the dice and bundle the ball in somehow... the whistle blows soon after the restart and South has an improbable but deserved point, the kind of point they haven't managed to earn off Ashy for a very long time (for the trainspotters out there, the last time we beat Ashburton was in 2005).

About as much fun as you could expect to have in Westmeadows - Hume City 1 South Melbourne 2

or,

three civilian cars, one company vehicle, two working trains, one train that blew up, several buses that didn't come and one that did

or,

why I do put myself through this nonsense week after week


On the way home yesterday, my train either snapped some sort of cable or became detached some other way, and we stopped at South Kensington station for a fair bit. The huge spark of electricity was pretty cool, the waiting for a couple of hours to get home wasn't. Thanks to the Connex dudes though who drove us to Footscray in the company cars when the buses couldn't make it through the streets or something.

As for the game, this whole experience gets stupider by the week. I'm this (use your imagination) close to just taking up a spot in whatever club we're at's press facilities and letting everyone else sort it out for themselves. SMFCTV already up with the highlights, which shows South dominating a pretty average in horrible conditions. Enjoy.

Friday, 24 April 2009

Anzac Day Blockbuster Motherfuckers! Hume City vs South Melbourne

Last Time They Met

Sometime during the middle of last year, at Knights Stadium.

Coburg United 2
South Melbourne 3

Man that drumming dude in the Mark Viduka stand was annoying. But we won, which was cool.


Preview
Will I even be able to go? It's in the middle of nowhere and I don't have a lift at this stage, which could very well mean that I'll have to get Twitter updates while watching the Pies game on the idiot box. Too bad that I wrote the upcoming Twitter trivia, which lessens the fun of that approach.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

So what did George Theodorou send you in that private message Psile?

Ignore the title of this post. I just couldn't come up with anything better. Match highlights from last week's game against Gully. Well to be honest, only our penalty and their 2nd goal, in which it can be clearly seen that Joel Nikolic fouls Tommi Tommich. None of which the resident Gully people on soccer-forum will ever see, because they don't see with their eyes, they percieve wiht their mind. Or something.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Messy version of my day out in Morwell

Today me and Ian Syson went out to Morwell to meet up with former Morwell Falcons president Don Di Fabrizio, to gather as much information on his life in soccer as he could provide. I'd never been to Morwell before, not even for a game back in the NSL days - my dad and uncle considered me too young for the elimination final 1st leg we played there back in 1994/95, and later on my cousin would seldom take me to South games, let alone all the way to Morwell. He's a Victory fan now by the way, just another ex-South fan to add to the list.

Anyway, I find pretty much consider anything outside the western suburbs, and to a certain extent the inner north, as a separate territory, something alien and disorienting. With country towns, that feeling is magnified. I found Canberra dead, thought Geelong akin to what people say Adelaide is like, and the rest of the country towns and hamlets along Victoria's west coast or through the middle of in particular New South Wales on the way to the Gold Coast I stopped in for a few minutes or a couple of hours - well I probably didn't stay there long enough to make any worthwhile comment on anything other then the quality of their service station or McDonalds.

So what's Morwell like. Well there's hills surrounding the place, some burnt out from the bushfires, and the remains of the open cut mines. There's a row of shops on Commercial Road,l some helpful locals, and one bloke who didn't bother taking a step around me and walked straight into me on the footpath... and kept walking. Don Di Fabrizio arrives in his four wheel drive, and perhaps scuttling our initial plans of having a sit down and talk, he decides to give us a bit of background on the Falcons and his own story. Don is a bit of a talker - it's difficult to get a couple of words in at the best of times - but there's a lot to talk about of course, both from his soccer and personal/work life.

So we end up driving to the site where he and a hell of a lot of other migrant workers camped in barracks, paid for by the company, and take a look at the deep depression in the ground where the coal was mined. We then took a tour around all the places that Morwell used in their gradual ascent to the NSL, and there were a heap of them. Eventually we ended up at Falcons Park, where Falcons 2000 president Tony Salvatore let us in to check out the facilities... impressive to say the least. A huge kitchen the Valkanis family would kill for, a large hall apparently catering for up to 500 people, four grounds, the lovely stand named after Don, even a soccer jersey shop tucked away in there. Was slightly amusing to see the first buildings they used as their gathering space though, two old buildings bought during the moving of the Yallourn population.

Lunch was great, but as my dad says, when you're hungry even rocks taste good (Greek saying which doesn't necessarily have the same ring to it in English). The trophy cabinets looked a little too filled up with junior trophies... but there was at least one of their two state league cups visible, and their Dockerty Cup was out getting touched up... not sure where our Dockerty Cups are, or our State Championship pennants and trophies. I posed some questions to Tony about what Falcons 2000 goals were after the Morwell/Eastern Pride group disintegrated... his answer seemed well thought out and bloody sensible... sort out your entire operation from head to toe, and when that happens, only then could you even consider the next steps... which for them would be going back into the metro competition, something they haven't considered yet and are unlikely to for the foreseeable future. Lessons here for a certain VPL club? Perhaps.

Monday, 20 April 2009

Two games, two losses for South women's seniors

After losing to Heidelberg in the season opener last Tuesday, South's senior women suffered a 3-0 loss yesterday to reigning champs Box Hill. Even Melissa Barbieri got on the score sheet apparently, which is kinda confusing, because weren't the Melbourne Victory Women's team squad members meant to be barred from playing with their suburban clubs? Anyway, the reserves had a better go of it, winning 2-1. Next game is at Lakeside against perennial therebouts team Ashburton. I reckon there's a good chance of me making an appearance at this one.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

A Match Review In Three Parts - Green Gully 2 South Melbourne 2

Firstly, thanks to Jim who gave me and Hellas Johnny a lift up there and back, much appreciated. Thanks also to the photographer from the local paper for the image at the end of this post, who passed it on to Chris, who passed it on to Jim, who passed it on to the rest of the world. It'll be interesting to see the relevant action on the replay.


Part 1 - Promises, promises


I said I'd be happy with a point, and now I have to stick to that. I'd rather we'd have lost though. Because that was crap and I don't think we'll learn as much from this as we would have if we lost. I personally am struggling to comprehend how people are saying we dropped two points today. That was a crap game from two teams that are probably going to make the finals.


Part 2 - An open letter to Michael Michalokopoulos

Dear Mike,

That was shit. I think you know that. I mean, it was pretty hard to miss. The reason I write however, is because while I have thus far been a big fan of yours, and defended your approach against the occasional naysayer, I have to say that yesterday some of your tactics and substitutions baffled me. Why take Zoric off? Unless he was injured, or ill, I could not see the reason for removing him. Sure, he didn't have his best game and was well marked, but he's still our best crosser and most likely source for that bit of magic which breaks the game open. If i may be so forward to make a suggestion, why was Fernando still out there? He can barely run, he even looks a little overweight, and while he did put in a couple of tackles today, still doesn't track back like he should. And most of Gully's attacks came from the left, where he was playing for the majority of the game - which puts extra pressure on Rhodri Payne. But then again, we got a point that in previous years we wouldn't have got. I guess that means perhaps that you were right, and I was wrong. If it gets us a title, this post will look silly, but I'm hoping it's a bit of constructive criticism that's taken the right way.

Also, please fuck off short corners.


yours,

Some random internet git


Part 3 - Green Gully, you can go and get fucked

Perhaps I shouldn't be too judgemental - it's not like we're the best run club in the universe. But what kind of club, which makes as much money as it does, and pays it's squad as much as it does, tries to limit match day programmes to to it's own members? First of all - it's not like you have that many members in the first place, and secondly, it's not like you don't have the money to print an extra twenty copies. I also thoroughly enjoyed your thumbing your nose at FFV regulations regarding the serving of beverages in anything other than a plastic cup. Still it was refreshing to see bottles being served - who cares if I might ping one at one of your thug players. And what's with the desire to play the last 25 minutes or so in near darkness? Your lights used to be so awesome - the best in the league - and now you can't afford more than 4 globes on each tower? But I suppose refs have to be paid off somehow. All those ridiculous challenges which every other team would get into massive trouble with, seemingly disappear. But who cares about sweeping two footed lunging tackles nowhere near the ball, when you can score goals like the one below. Green Gully, I tip my hat to you. Stick it to the man. Oh wait - for so long you were the underdog - but you aren't anymore. Please stop pretending that you are. Is that perhaps why you play the way you do though? Long balls and butcher tackles? You're not Frankston Pines or George Cross. You have a budget that can buy you a team that could play attractive football.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Happy Birthday Franny!

Now I'm not much for birthdays and shit - what with them being largely a vain attempt to impose imaginary figments of our importance on the cosmos and all that, and I don't know, why don't you just get them a book voucher, but they don't read, well I'm out of ideas, big help you were, well at least I'm trying - but we're making an exception in the case of Francis Edgar Awaritefe (who turns 45 today), one of this reporters more favourite players to have gone through the South Melbourne Hellas smile factory. Franny cops a lot of flak these days from certain people - who claim they don't even watch SBS or The World Game - for his comments on various footbally things, but we choose to remember the good times, his bizarre ability to score belting goals and screw up easy ones as well as his willingness to call it as he sees it. But instead of rummaging through the video vault, I've decided to showcase the greatness of the man with this excerpt I found in a Roy Hay piece talking about the former National Youth League (Micky P also gets a mention). Did you also know that Francis is the last Hellas player to win league top goalscoring honours, all the way back in 1993? Long time between drinks. Have a good one Franny.

Though the NYL came in for much criticism, some of it deserved, one of my abiding memories of the competition was when Geelong City played a Melbourne Croatia (now Knights) team which included Francis Awaratife, who was coming back after injury. The big striker spent the whole game coaching and encouraging the players around him, not only his own team-mates but also the young Geelong centre-back who was trying to mark him as tightly as possible and subjecting him to some fairly physical tackling. Micky Petersen used to do exactly the same for the South Melbourne youth team. Playing with stars like that, who were aware of the wider role of the NYL, was an inspiration for youngsters starting out on a soccer career and for this reason alone the competition deserved wider recognition than it received. Let’s hope the new version is as fruitful.

Friday, 17 April 2009

Seriously, I'd take a point from this game - Round 7, Green Gully vs South Melbourne

Last Time They Met

Green Gully 1

South Melbourne 0

Green Gully scored off a Tommi Tommich dropped ball... pretty much his only mistake in the eight games he played for us last year. At the other end, the ball as per usual didn't want to go into the net for us. I vaguely remember having a conversation with someone about Carl Sagan.


Preview

Haven't won a league match there in 23 years... of course we didn't play them in the league from 1987-2004, but still, we haven't even scored a goal there since our drop to the VPL. Rama's 100th South league game and Horsey on the verge of his South league goal ton aside, I'd be happy even scoring there. We don't have the best record against Gully in general. We've only beaten them twice since the VPL days, both in 2006. So yeah, draw would be good.

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Congratulations Ramazan! 100 Games!

Here at South of the Border, we unashamedly love Rama. He gives 100%, tackles hard, jumps into crowds, and on rare occasions scores some crazy goals. And he's always up for a quick chat with your correspondent, even if he doesn't know who the hell I am. Rama being captain this year made total sense. And this week he plays his 100th league game for South. Here's hoping there's 3 points in the bag and maybe a goal as well away to Gully this week.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Roudn 1 Women's score - Bergers 1 South 0

Disappointing start to the season from the women last night, our man on the spot tells us that they played well enough, but were shaky in defense. We did cause some headaches in attack, and had a legitimate goal disallowed.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

South Women begin 2009 campaign tonight

South's Women's team starts tonight, playing against Heidelberg at Darebin. There's a few changes in the WVPL this year. Firstly, it's down to ten teams, and the players hooked up to the Victory women's team aren't allowed to play for their winter club side. Eltham North has disintegrated entirely, seeing the Geelong Region FA combined side come up, and Keilor lost a stack of players. In theory it should be the tightest most competitive comp in years, with one or two likely stragglers, but for sfatey's sake everyone's saying Box Hill will win it again, and who am I to argue? The South women get four games early on at Lakeside, before heading back to Field 13. Let's hope they can put it all together and at least make the finals this year.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Friday, 10 April 2009

Hey Man (Now You're Really Living)

There's no football on this weekend. Nothing. They even moved the match of other football team I'm interested in to a Thursday night. I don't know what you people out here have been doing or are planning on doing, but I'm really bored. I've received a couple of submissions for Victoria University's annual creative arts journal Offset 2009 (of which I am the managing editor - did you hear we got Catherine Deveny to be our feature writer? It's true) and bought a couple of players for Juniper Hill, my team on Hattrick, as well as put a couple of others on the transfer list. One of the new arrivals was classified as a nasty fellow, who lowered my team spirit which kinda sucks. I'm listening to Eels' Blinking Lights and Other Revelations disc 2, instead of putting on disc 1 of Shooting at Unarmed Men's Triptych. I'm reading and writing stuff on The World Game Forum, and pondering the question about there's a line that can be crossed in that site. I was a little sick earlier this week, but got over that fairly quickly. I might go bowling. I might start reading Dorothy Hewett's Bobbin Up, because I have to, not because I want to.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Under 21s still; doing a good job

A scoreless draw over the weekend sees South's under 21s holding down 2nd spot on the table, 2 points behind the Melbourne Knights with a game in hand. Looking good boys.

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Four wins on the trot - South Melbourne 3 Richmond 0

It's fair to say that the first half of football wasn't the best you'll ever see. South looked alright early on, scored a goal, but thereafter struggled to maintain possession. Fortunately, Richmond didn't look like scoring, and both sides found the windy conditions in the opening period difficult to deal with. The second half was pretty much all South from a quality point of view. Coveny's long range effort pretty much put the game beyond doubt, and Zoric managed to get himself another one for the season, in spite of Horsey trying to be greedy and get his 100th league goal for South. A break now for Easter, and then a couple of away trips, first to Gully, then Hume, before evntually being back home against Oakleigh.

Friday, 3 April 2009

H20 confirmed as Lakeside architects

Not much to say, but interesting to note that H20 are confirmed as the architects - as sort of revealed on this blog, like ages ago - and the budget figure is bcak down to $50 million, from the $74 million as said by Michael Danby. Still clapping now?



Athletics pushes for more funds

Dan Silkstone
April 2, 2009


ATHLETICS could be the loser in Melbourne's great stadium shuffle if the State Government does not increase its commitment to redeveloping Albert Park.

But the city is likely to recapture a piece of its history as the sport pushes to have the new stadium renamed the Lakeside Oval.

Athletics Australia Chairman Rob Fildes said the city's IAAF world tour meeting, the only top-class athletics event in Australia, was in danger of being poached by Sydney if the sport's eviction from Olympic Park was not cushioned by a move to a modern new stadium.

"It could be in another city in Australia or it could go offshore to another country," he said. "If Melbourne wishes to continue to be the sporting capital of Australia, the facilities — we must have the facilities to put on a truly international performance at the new venue."

The sport's move has eventuated after construction of the new rectangular stadium for soccer and rugby league meant a new training surface had to be found for Collingwood. The Magpies — who have a contract guaranteeing it a ground close to the Lexus Centre — are slated to demolish and take over the dilapidated Olympic Park, while athletics will move from its traditional home to Albert Park.

The Government has said it will spend as much as $50 million — a budget that must cover the demolition of Olympic Park, the move to new facilities, refurbishing the heritage protected old grandstand and building new stadium facilities. But athletics officials say as much as $20 million more will be needed to ensure an adequate home for the sport.

"We wanted to stay where we were but we realise the Government wants us to go to the Lakeside Oval," Fildes said. "We accept that but in good faith we look forward to having the international standards that are needed to hold international events."

Collingwood president Eddie McGuire — also a board member of Athletics Australia — has been lobbying the State Government to increase its financial commitment to the new home for athletics. Athletics officials want the State Government to subsidise school use of the new stadium for athletics carnivals, which would cost around $1 million a year.

The Age has seen plans for the new stadium, drawn up by architectural firm H2O. A northern grandstand — seating 2500 people — will be built for athletics but there is no provision for administrative space. A second stand — seating 2500 — will house the South Melbourne Soccer Club. The current car park becomes a warm-up track and throws area, while the old grandstand will be refurbished and become home to the Victorian Institute of Sport. Plans include a gym, indoor swimming pool and 100-metre indoor track.

But the present budget is not considered sufficient to accommodate lighting needed for television broadcasts, an electronic scoreboard or video replay screens. Such facilities are considered essential if the Lakeside Oval is to be a spectator venue as well as a training centre. "These things would really allow us to present athletics in a modern way," Fildes said. "The stadiums plans are very good but it is probably 1980s and we need to bring it into 2009."

Sydney has a legacy of top athletics facilities from the Olympic Games and is desperate to use them. A new scoreboard and video screens will be installed at Homebush later this year. Approaches have been made by Sydney, as recently as last month, to snare Melbourne's top event.

The Government wants to rationalise Melbourne's sporting facilities, creating a professional precinct around the MCG that will house soccer, rugby league, the Collingwood, Melbourne and Richmond AFL clubs as well as tennis and basketball. Albert Park will become the "Olympic precinct".

Clash of the Top Six Teams! Round 6 - South Melbourne vs Richmond

Last Time They Met

Richmond 2 South Melbourne 0 at their place. Cardozo's lobbed goal was pretty cool.

Preview

Should be a good game. Show where we're at maybe.

Elbow at The Corner Hotel

Good show, but not a great one, though that had a fair bit to do with the venue (couldn't see much), and the fucksticks who insisted on talking through most of the songs (except naturally the new songs which they knew). Great banter and audience involvement though. Grounds For Divorce and Station Approach my highlights. Puncture Repair, Switching Off and The Stops not great song choices venue/scene/occasion. Bones Of You also good. Got a grey tour t-shirt, yes, with dates on the back. Got a lift home with a taxi driver who was eating churros that were over fried and were therefore crunchy. We talked about churros and how they're not meant to be crunchy. I feel like having some churros right about now.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Good enough I guess - Whittlesea Zebras 1 South Melbourne 3

Started like a house on fire, scored, and then lost the plot for a bit. Whittlesea scored through Vasallo being left unmarked and with plenty of time on the right hand side. Took a bit of time to get started in the 2nd half, and still had a few nervous moments for no good reasons, but the muppet on the Victory forum who thinks the Zebras deserved a draw is dreaming. When it counted, South were one or two classes above. Zoric, De Nittis and Fernando our scorers. This week's game against Richmond should provide a better indication of we're where at than last night's contest.