Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Socceroos Paralysis (Analysis) vs. South Africa

So the Socceroos performance against the Bafana Bafana was Disappointing Disappointing! With not too long to go till the World Cup and with more injuries than a King Cross hospital ward on a Friday night at this moment the Socceroos are a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an Enigma (Go the Winston Churchill quotes!)

The Riddle

What do you call Australia’s only hope of scoring goals at the World Cup and at the same time Australia’s potential downfall because it will lead to a style of play that is easy to defend and predictable to the point of embarrassing?  

Tim Cahill is probably not a riddle but maybe a paradox or perhaps an irony. The irony is that Tim Cahill is probably the Socceroos best chance of scoring goals.  The more the team centers themselves around Super TImmy the more easier the opposition will be able to neutralize the Socceroos attack as it's easy to defend crosses. 

I’m not sure what the correct literary device to use is in this instance but the Socceroos created more crosses against South Africa than the production design team used for that scene in the Film Spartacus. 

The Mystery

Which Ange Postecoglu will we see at the World Cup? The Brisbane Roar Ange Postecoglu where the team was patient with their passing, the one where they refused to cross except for when it was stupid not to. 

Will it be the Ange Postecoglu which made everyone in Australia who followed the local game give standing golf claps in adoration at the quality of play? Will it be the Ange that even the Duck (Craig Foster) and the Poet (Les Murray) ate their words and gushed inside their foreign made underpants due to the exciting nature of the tactical and technical mastery that was on display?

Or will it be the Melbourne Victory Ange Postecoglu getting thrashed one week and playing just OK the next?

The Enigma

Where our Holiness Gus Hiddink was quoted by his Protégé Graham Arnold as saying “international football is not won or lost in the first 20 mins” AP it seems is spouting the opposite.

“If we try and score three goals in the first twenty minutes and try and hold on for the next 70 minutes we might not get smashed” 

It’s difficult to understand why Ange Postecoglu is into the crossing thing at the moment. He did so well with Brisbane Roar with the patient possession game. Why play like David Moyes Everton? Why play like Holger Osieck and Pim Verbeek?

Yes, yes, yes I know some first team players are injured and not fit and James Holland looks stoned and permanently has a look of wanting to punch someone. And Yes, yes, yes the Socceroos always do better against higher quality opposition and then blow it at the end and sometimes cause big upsets. 

Yes, yes, yes we also know that against easier opposition and games we are expected to win easily the Socceroos usually play within themselves and the result and performance can be historically disappointing.

As a friend wisely quipped after the game:

“If the Socceroos play like this again, Chile will crucify them on their own cross”

Short reflections:

  • Did you see Luke Wilkshire put on his Socceroos shirt right before  he came on for Ivan Franjić? He looks like you and me not the fit Luke Wilkshire of yore.

  • Jason "outstanding season" Davidson is/will be a liability

Thursday, May 22, 2014

To be Embarrassed or NOT to be Embarrassed THAT is the QUESTION

Leading up to the Socceroos friendly send off as they head of to the World Cup in Brazil I got some Questions that have been swirling in my head.

When Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglu announced his Socceroos squad I paid close attention to his accompanying comments at the press conference:

"We'll have the whole nation watching in the middle of the night. I'm not going to tell them to get up and not feel great about it”

"And then our responsibility as I said is to excite them when they watch. To give them maybe that glimpse of a future and who knows maybe take them on a little bit of a wild ride through here when the unexpected happens."

Reading between the lines the main objective for the World Cup in Brazil is for the Socceroos not to be embarrassing Australia.  Consecutive six nil thrashings against France and Brazil meant that things had to change.

As the team goes through the rigmarole of press conferences, media and sponsor appearances and even some training I asked myself:
 Is this the worst Socceroos squad on paper I’ve seen since I’ve been following the team since 1988? On paper probably yes. Experience wise probably yes.

Will the Socceroos get smashed? In the cold hard light of day probably yes. But in Australia we don’t get many cold hard days our days are warm easy and laidback. In Brazil against Chile, Netherlands and Spain it could be miserable embarrassing and frustrating.

While the messages coming out from the Socceroos PR machine are positive are fans, pundits. Players and coaches deluded into thinking the team have any chance of not being embarrassed? It’s not so bad to lie to yourself sometimes. Unfortunately the scoreboard doesn’t lie. So most fans are being realistic and lots of Joe and Jane Public are saying: “we’re gonna get thrashed!”

 “The Socceroos defence looks like a mad women’s breakfast”

Many questions surround the final 23 man squad and then even more questions abound in who will take the field against LA Roja nickname for Chile means “the Red One who will thrash the Socceroos”

For years the Socceroos had mainstays in defence Alex Tobin and Milan Ivanovic, Lucas Neill and Craig Moore, Now the question of who will be in this Socceroos defence is still a ponderous one. Even the Ubermunch Ange Postecoglu doesn’t know. Curtis Good’s hip flexor just doesn’t want to heal, Trent Sainsbury fell on a sprinkler and his knee refused to get better in time for the World Cup. Mathew Spiranivich knee’s and hamstrings are one awkward lunge away from a lay off and that leaves Alex Wilkinson who tried to dribble to himself against Ecuador and it cost the Socceroos a goal. That’s why AP gets paid the big bux. As my Maths teacher Mr Sayburn used to say “The Socceroos defense looks like a mad women’s breakfast.” (He actually would say your Maths homework looks like a mad women's breakfast"

The midfield isn’t looking so stable at the moment either. Can Mile Jedinak bring that EPL form to the Socceroos? Jedinak got himself injured in the last game of the EPL. His groin refused to dive into anymore tackles. The Jak won’t get the time and space that the EPL defenders afforded him during his first season in Europe and expect him to be well covered by opposition defences at the World Cup.

“At what point do we accept that Marc Bresciano Is a Vampire?”

Another Question is: Can Marc Bresciano still bring it? After missing all those months suspended after someone at his club filled out the wrong form. FIFA and Centrelink must have a similar bureaucracy fill in the the wrong form and they take away your payments and penalise you for months.

And another question? At what point do we accept that Marc Bresciano is a Vampire? Look at 2006, 2010 and 2014 Bresh. Someone’s cabinet or safe is missing quite a large batch of their Elixir of Youth, Perhaps he is an Alchemist or some Druid in disguise because Bresh hasn't aged since the 2006 World Cup. He looks the same as he did when he scored against Uruguay and did the statue pose. C’mon Bresh score @ the World Cup & do the Statue!   
Pic Above is Marc Bresciano a Vampire like Pharell appears to be?


Should I ask a question about the attack? Sure I will. By the time the defense and midfield are run ragged at some point the Socceroos will have to attack.
Such is the fashion these days of  world football that not playing with Strikers and flooding the team with midfielders is now the norm., The Shoot Farken school of thought is slowly been erased and just like universal health care and free education Strikers will be gazed upon in moments of nostalgia.

 Super Timmy Cahill another candidate for a Vampire as he too hasn’t aged and neither has his ability to leap higher than most tall defenders could be the Socceroos only Striker along with Josh Kennedy. Adam Taggart won’t probably make it in this World Cup squad (I’d like to see him go though I’m in the SHOOT FARKEN minority) Set pieces and Tommy Oar crossing for his life could be the Socceroos best chances.

Any more Questions? NO? Good. Let’s play!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


With Ange Postecoglu announcing his 30 man preliminary World Cup Squad today I’d thought I’d try and play guess the squad. But after writing down the list of players I thought who would make the 30 man squad it didn't seem like much of a guess at all.  The player pool is small. Realistically there are about 20-30 players that are good enough to make the squad. Not enough players are getting regular game time in Europe while the ones that are playing regularly are not really playing at a high enough level or forgive the ageist remark some players  are just too old.  

The squads chosen for the Costa Rica and Ecuador game showed pretty much what Ange Postecolgu was thinking and the recent retirements of the often so called golden generation  means that it’s not going to be a squad full of surprises. Or was it? Reports around Australian media suggest a fair bunch of A-League players will be picked. But with they make the final cut? I don't think so.  In terms of picking the younger players  I would've liked to have see the Wunderkind from Perth Daniel De Silva, and midfielder Jackson Irvine and a couple of A League youngsters taken along for experience if they aren't included in the final 23. But it wasn't to be.

Just a quick word on the squad. As expected Uber Coach to be Ange chose the squad most Socceroos botherers  expected. 

The Defence
The Socceroos defence. Inexperienced  and with only ONE player (Luke Wilkshire) with previous World Cup experience. And forgive me for being incorrect but I'm sure there isn't even World Cup qualifying experience in there either. Soon to be Real Madrid Number One (according to Graham Arnold anyway) Matt Ryan is going to be having daydreams about saving goals and nightmares about his inexperienced defence, but lets not dwell on the worry at least Lucas Neill is not the focus anymore. Curtis Good is still injured and there is no reserve Left Back. I would use Mark Milligan in defense with Mathew Spiranovic and make sure the other left sided players and right side players help with parking the bus when needed.

The Midfield
Mile Jedinak getting injured is a worry but perhaps Ange is playing mind games with the opposition and the Jak is just having a rest after a season of tackling and crunching tackles with Crystal Place because in terms of star players Mile is our new Harry Kewell. Without the goals and creativity but with the injuries leading up to the World Cup and is the closest thing the Socceroos have a Star player (besides Super Timmy of course). Tom Rogic had it lost it? Mmmmm can only do about 30 mins tops I reckon. NO speed no stamina but can dribble and is not shy about going forward.Tommy Oar more crosses and through balls yes please. 

The Attack
Will be tracking back and Timmy Cahill and Josh Keneddy will be hop hop hopping at those crosses.Robbie Kruse is a big loss. Sure Mathew Leckie and Ben Halloran are quick and powerful going forward. But will the Socceroos have enough ball for them to show what they can do? 

The Roundup
The ball is round anything can happen, as Mr Cruyff used to say football is an easy game except when you play against Spain, Holland and Chile in your World Cup Group. (I know he never said that) All the talk and analysis will mean nothing. Can we fast forward till the Chile game already please? The Dutch can be their own downfall They might do a Les Blues and crack up. Spain might have too many siesta's and miss the Bus to the game thus forfeiting the three points to the Socceroos  Chile might think they are playing Austria instead and told to make sure the guy with the mustache doesn't score.

Eugene GALEKOVIC (Adelaide United FC, AUSTRALIA)
Mitchell LANGERAK (B.V. Borussia 09 Dortmund, GERMANY)
Mat RYAN (Club Brugge KV, BELGIUM)

Jason DAVIDSON (SC Heracles Almelo, NETHERLANDS)
Ivan FRANJIC (Brisbane Roar FC, AUSTRALIA)
Curtis GOOD (Newcastle United, ENGLAND)
Ryan McGOWAN (Shandong Luneng Taishan FC, CHINA)
Matthew SPIRANOVIC (Western Sydney Wanderers FC, AUSTRALIA)
Luke WILKSHIRE (FK Dinamo Moscow, RUSSIA)
Bailey WRIGHT (Preston North End FC, ENGLAND)

Mark BRESCIANO (Al Gharafa, QATAR)
Joshua BRILLANTE (Newcastle Jets FC, AUSTRALIA)
James HOLLAND (FK Austria Vienna, AUSTRIA)
Mile JEDINAK (Crystal Palace FC, ENGLAND)
Massimo LUONGO (Swindon Town FC, ENGLAND)
Matthew McKAY (Brisbane ROAR FC, AUSTRALIA)
Mark MILLIGAN (Melbourne Victory FC, AUSTRALIA)
Tommy ROGIC (Melbourne Victory FC, AUSTRALIA)
James TROISI (Melbourne Victory FC, AUSTRALIA)

Tim CAHILL (New York Red Bulls, USA)
Ben HALLORAN (Fortuna Dusseldorf, GERMANY)
Josh KENNEDY (Nagoya Grampus 8, JAPAN)
Matthew LECKIE (FSV Frankfurt 1899, GERMANY)
Adam TAGGART (Newcastle Jets FC, AUSTRALIA)

Here is an interview I did with Bailey Wright for 442 website a couple of years back: http://afootballstory.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/generation-next-bailey-wright-interview.html

Friday, May 9, 2014

I'm Back Baby! Half Glass Fempty

Hi Everyone,

It's been a while since i posted a blog post that I have written personally. I recently had a medical scare and with new perception in life I thought I would come back to my passion. Writing about football. I won't go into the details because I'm a private person and some mystery in life is good but i implore all of you not to do what  I didn't do and that is fail to get a proper check up from your doctor in 10 years. Got my dunce cap screwed on tight at the moment. Anyway this blog is not called "My Story" it's called  A Football Story (crap name for a blog but I'm Australian and the when it comes to naming things we go for the obvious (with thanks to comedian Steve Hughes for that insight)

Goodnight and Good Luck Luca$ Neill inc and Brett LoLman    

So to ease myself into things i want talk about the Socceroos and the excitement of the World Cup. World Cup squads will be announced next month and so far we know that Ange "It's all cool Bro" Postecogluhas been on the blower to both Brett Holman and Lucas Neill. And it wasn't the good type of phone cal it was the one where he probably used the positive negative positive sandwich technique where sandwiched in the middle was the message sorry boys you have been great servants for the Socceroos in the past but there is no room for you at Brazil World Cup in the present goodnight and good luck n the future. I almost feel sorry for Lucash. He tried his hardest to make it but age caught up with him .Doncaster Rovers is not going to prepare you for the attacking blitz of The Spanish, Chilean and Dutch menace. It would have been a horrific end to Lucas's career and at least he has gone out a winner against Costa Rica rather than being used  as an escapegoat ( with thanks to Tony Tannous) for the Socceroos poor defense yet again

In Ange We Must Trust 

Ange Postecoglu has to hope and pray that no other key players get injured. The Socceroos have already lost a triumvirate( love that word)  Ryhs Williams, Robbie Kruse, and Mark Schwarzer  Schwarzer showed recently that he still has the skills to pay the bills when Chelsea played Liverpool in the EPL recently. He could have advised in Ange we must trust about the benefits of parking two buses. The way Schwarzer led the team from the back in slowing the play down when Chelsea frustrated Liverpool while not a tactic I agree with and one that doesn't always works as Chelsea found out I think if used at certain times (not from the firts minute like Chelsea)  it could help the Socceroos slow the game down and give players time to rest and hold their positions. Australian football is famous for a Gunge-ho mentality ( remember the final five minutes against Italy in 2006 when Marc Bresciano ended up at right back defending Grosso?  and the first game the Socceroos played against Germany in 2010 where the team attacked and played with a high a line in defense. Running around like a headless chock is not the answer lets slow it down.

Half Glass Fempty

That is how I'm viewing the Socceroos chances of progressing out of the Group of Death and into the next round.. Half Glass Fempty meaning I'm not that optimistic but the way that Postecoglu prepares his teams and scouts the opposition makes me think that the Socceroos at the least will be competitive and not be the whipping boys that everyone in the real football world expects.  I really have great optimism that the Socceroos will may indeed shock some teams, pundits and fans with how the team approaches each challenge they are faced with. 

Cliches Time

Football isn't played on paper. If it was the Socceroos are screwed. What Australia has in their favour is that most of the make up of the Socceroos squad will be unknowns. I can only think of Marc Bresciano Mile Jedinak and Tim Cahil as the Socceroos biggest names.  If you think about the make up of what  the squad could be names like Curtis Good, Jason Davidson,   Tommy Oar, Tom Rogic  and Mathew Leckie  aren't  really well known outside of Socceroos fans.

Miracles do Happen,

So considering these points well only one point really and that is most of the Socceroos will be unknown to their Group B opponents.  This could cause the opposition to not take them as seriously. I think if the football gods are smiling on Australia and ball bounces and the wind blows favourably towards the Socceroos anything can happen. The ball is round lets play!

Blogger of the Year Award
Hi Folks I've been included in the shortlist for blogger of the year. Here is where you can vote for me and your other favorite bloggers  Here is the link.  vote for me here

Thanks to  Blogger of the Year Award in partnership with Football Fans Down Under (FFDU) for including me in the shortlist for their Blogger of the Year award..I haven't really done so much in terms of blogging this year so I feel humbled that I've been included in the nominations it's a real good list of quality bloggers. I thankyou for your support.

Con Stamocostas

Monday, May 5, 2014

Aussies Abroad Month in Review April 2014

Compiled by Damian Davies  ;

Not only was Dylan Tombides a young Aussie footballer with an exciting future, he was a son and a brother.  He has left this world way too early after a brave and inspiring fight against cancer.  Our thoughts and best wishes are with his family and friends.
A busy month on the football scene for our Aussies with European leagues coming to their conclusions for the 2013/14 season and Champions League action in both Europe and Asia.  The announcement of the Socceroos squad is only days away and many players have made impressive charges towards the squad.  Minimal transfer activity, but as we near the end of the season in Australia and Europe, expect a flurry of transfers over the coming months. 

Transfers:-  the move of young striker Peter Skapetis to Stoke City was significant as he pushes for first team football in England.  He is a prominent player in our national youth set-up.

Additions/changes to player database:
Harrison Delbridge (1 Mar 1992) - transfer to Sacramento Republic, USA
Scott Gannon (12 Mar 1988) - transferred to Hekari United, Fiji (OFCCL)
Danijel Nizic (15 Mar 1996) - loan to Workington AFC, England
Reece Papas (11 Mar 1996) - transferred to Stoke City, England
Peter Skapetis (13 Jan 1995) - transferred from QPR to Stoke City, England
Jamie Street (2 Oct 1993) - transferred from non league to Workington AFC, England
Jason Taylor (1 Jan 1997) -  transferred to Tampines Rovers, Singapore

Removed from player database: 
Nathan Burns (Incheon United) - uncontracted
James Georgeff (Torgelower SV) - uncontracted
James Meyer (Pune FC) - uncontracted
Adriano Pellegrino (Kedah) - deal cancelled
Milan Susak (Al Wasl) - uncontracted
Jamie Young (Hayes & Yeading) - retired

Club Level:-
England (Premiership) – Mile Jedinak has inspired the Crystal Palace team to great heights this season.  Avoiding a relegation scrap for his club, winning plaudits for his tackles, inceptions and minutes.  To the point of being named in some EPL "Team of the Season" line-ups. He is one of only 3 players to play every minute of the season and scored his first EPL goal during April. An injury to Petr Cech has seen Mark Schwarzer take over the gloves at Chelsea.  An important time of year as they chase the EPL title.  Brad Jones continues in the match day squad at Liverpool, but infrequently gets a run.

England (Championship) – celebrations for Leicester City and Burnley who have automatic promotion.  A total of 7 Aussies on the books of both clubs, predominately in the youth teams with the exception of Alex Cisak who is the second choice keeper at Burnley.  Very little to note from an Aussie perspective with injury and form keeping most of our contingent on the sidleines.  Scott McDonald is getting game time at relegation threatened Millwall.

England (League One) – Bailey Wright and Neil Kilkenny have been features in Preston North End's charge to the playoffs.  Given both players are tracked in the national set-up, would be fantastic to see them up in the Championship.  The impressive campaigns of Luongo and Wesolowski continue, but they will need to rely on transfers to move up.  Brad Inman is getting minutes at Crewe, now over 2400 for the season.

England (League Two) - not too many bright spots for our Aussies in this league with the exception of Ryan Williams at Oxford United.  The 20 y.o. having now netted six times in his 35 appearances.  Will be interesting to see if he returns to parent club Fulham during the off-season or looks for guaranteed first team football elsewhere.

Germany (Bundesliga) - Mitch Langerak continues to wait patiently for his opportunities, having made 11 appearances in all competitions this season.

Germany (2. Bundesliga) - the form of Mat Leckie has been consistent over the past month at FSV Frankfurt, having scored nine times in his 28 starts.  The bolter has to be Ben Halloran at Fortuna Dusseldorf.  During April he has scored in four successive games.  Fit and in form, he should have done enough to get to Brazil.

Netherlands (Eredivisie) – Tommy Oar has certainly matured more as a player at Utrecht this season. Having played a career high in minutes and appearances, he is one player that will be in the shop window at Brazil.  Jason Davidson continues to impress at Heracles.  Adam Sarota (Utrecht) is having an interesting season since coming back from his knee injury.  He is still trying to cement a starting eleven position, and rarely sees out 90 minutes.  National competiton is tight in his position, will be intriguing to see which way Ange goes with him. 

Netherlands (Eerste Divisie) - the season has just finished with Andrew Marveggio (Telstar) making 14 appearances in his best season as a pro.  Young VVV Venlo Aussies, Travis Cooper (14 appearances) and Harry Ascroft (7 appearances) should be proud of their accomplishments as their European careers begin.

Austria (Bundesliga) - a delayed start to April courtesy of a red card, James Holland is now back in the starting line-up at Austria Wien.

Belgium (Pro League) - a few more clean sheets for Mat Ryan at Club Brugge.  He is now chasing a domestic league in what would cap an amazing club season.

Croatia (1. HNL) - the rise and rise of Tomislav Mrcela at NK Hrvatski Dragovoljac.  The towering defender has now made 24 starts and scored twice at the centre of defence.  Getting very difficult to not try to entice him to the Aussie WC squad.  With his club team facing relegation, a get chance to get in the shop window as well. The other unherald Aussie in this league is Steven Ugarkovic.  Having scored his debut goal in April and now made 21 appearances.

Scotland (Premier) – Dylan McGowan continues to gain valuable experience at Hearts.  Having now been converted to a defender, he has made 34 starts to date.  Young midfielder Jackson Irvine continues to start at Kilmarnock.

Wales (Premier League) - young defender Daniel Collins has made his way into the starting eleven at Bala Town in thime for their playoffs.

 China (Super League) - the current Aussie standout in this league is journeyman Adam Hughes.  Plying his trade at Harbin Yiteng, he hasn't missed a minute and scored twice. Billy Celeski, Jonas Salley and Daniel McBreen start each game.  Ryan McGowan has been in and out of the squad at Shandong.

Japan (J. League) - four goals in his 8 appearances makes that a reasonable return for striker Josh Kennedy at Nayoga Grampus.  He is currently on the sidelines with a minor thigh injury. Mitch Nichols remains in the matchday squad at Cerezo Osaka but sees very few minutes on the pitch.

Philippines (UFL) - young defender Jesse Martindale continues to play 90 minutes each week for Green Archers United.

India (I League) - Sean Rooney's Bengaluru FC were crowned champions in this league with Sean amassing 10 goals in his 21 starts.  Several Aussies were prominent in this league: Simon Colosimo (Dempo), 19 starts and played the full 90 minutes each game. Matthew Foschini (Salgoacar), 16 starts and also all full games, Tolgey Ozbey (Dempo) after transferring mid-season, 8 goals in 8 appearances, Mirjan Pavlovic (Pune) scored 3 goals after his mid season move and Daniell Zeleny made a handful of appearances, notably in the AFC Cup, after he was bought in.

Hong Kong (HKFA 1st Division) - Andrew Barisic (South China) seems to be predominately used in the Champions League and AFC Cup. Playing full games and scoring plenty of goals. Dylan Macallister (Eastern AA) has been pivotal in his club's cup run, scored a brace on two occasions.

Malaysia (Super League) - Mario Karlovic (Terengganu), Ryan Griffiths (Sarawak) and Steve Pantelidis (Selangor) are all starting and scoring for their respective clubs.

Vietnam (V League) - fromer Melbourne Victory defender Sam Gallagher has made a bright start to his career at Hanoi T&T, scoring his second goal of the season and making Champions League and AFC Cup appearances.

U.A.E (UFL) - Brett Holman has now played over 2000 minutes for Al Nasr this season.

Iran (Persian Gulf Cup) - Iain Fyfe (Mes Kerman) ended a disappointing season with 11 starts from 30 games.  With his team getting relegated, he may be on his way back to Australia.

Promotions/Relegations for our Aussies:
(England) - Promoted - Leicester City, Burnley
(England) - Relegated - Torquay, Dartford, Workington
(Cyprus) - Relegated - AEK Kouklion
(Iran) - Relegated - MES Kerman
(Netherlands) - Relegated - FC Chabab
(Scotland) - Relegated - Hearts
(Turkey) - Relegated - 1930 Bafraspor

Injuries:-   a few fairly minor injuries causing a little anxiety in Socceroos circles.  Chris Herd, Curtis Good, Lucas Neill, Trent Sainsbury, Josh Kennedy and Tim Cahill have all missed parts or all of April.  Would be great to see these guys back in the next week or so leading up to the WC squad announcement.

Club Competitions:-
(UEFA Champions League) – Mitch Langerak (Dortmund) sat on the bench as his team was eliminated in the quarter finals.  The big Aussie story was Mark Schwarzer (Chelsea) taking the gloves from the injured Petr Cech.  He keep goals as Chelsea were knocked out by Atletico Madrid in the semis.  Not bad for a 41 year old.
(UEFA Europa League) – no Australians remain in the competition.
South America
(Copa Libertadores) - Richard Porta was an unused substitute as Nacional were eliminated in the group stages
(Asian Champions League) - several Aussies remain in this competition with Alex Wilkinson (Jeonbuk Motors), Jonas Salley (Guizhou Renhe), Mitch Nichols (Cerezo Osaka) and Ryan McGowan (Shandong Luneng) all seeing game time during the group stages in April.
(AFC Cup) - also in the group stages still for the AFC Cup, Andrew Barisic (South China), Steve Panteldis (Selangor), Sam Gallagher (Hanoi T&T), Mirjan Pavlovic (Pune) and Daniell Zeleny (Churchill Brothers) all featuring.

Reserves and Youth:-
The Aussie Villans of Jordan Lyden, Thomas Strain and Ryan Strain continue to appear from the Aston Villa youth teams.  Centre back Cameron Burgress scored in the first leg of the FA Youth Cup final as Fulham look to claim some silverware.  Gethin Jones has stepped up to U21's level for Everton.  While in Italy, Chris Ikonomidis continues to start for Lazio in the Primavera.

International level:- as we get close to the World Cup, the field is certainly narrowing in terms of players that are in the frame for selection.  Fantastic to see so many players having a great few months in the lead up to selection. A huge thank you to those Socceroos that have recently hung up the boots, this being Harry Kewell and Brett Holman. 

Socceroo (capped) of the month – a true inspiration to his team this season with his leadership and determination, Mile Jedinak has played a large role in the end of season revivial at Crystal Palace.  Playing in arguably the biggest league in the world, he continues to have an amazing season.
Oct - Vidosic, Nov - Ryan, Dec - Jedinak, Jan - Jedinak, Feb - Ryan, Mar - Kennedy

Under the radar (uncapped)  - extremely easy choice this month.  Four games in four games has thrust Ben Halloran into the limelight.  Not only at club level in Germany, but now with the national team selectors.
Oct - Konstantinidis, Nov - Luongo, Dec - Mrcela, Jan - Giannou, Feb - Wright, Mar - Lowry

Young player (U21) of the month – a previous winner, Steven Ugarkovic had a strong month in the tough Croatian league. Scoring his debut goal in April, and now making 21 appearances for the season, he will be hoping to avoid relegation in the last few weeks of the campaign.
Oct - Ugarkovic, Nov - Ryan Williams, Dec - Cooper, Jan - B.Smith, Feb - Grant, Mar - Tanner