The season has begun to settle into something of a rhythm now. The opening rounds dusted off the cobwebs for some, blooded new talent for others. It's still early days, but these rounds will be more or less closely battled. Let's have a look at the last round of A League football.
GAME OF THE WEEK
A bit of a peculiarity in all aspects this one, but Central Coast v Perth Glory was a stunner of a result. The game yielded an unexpected 2-0 win for the Mariners. Personally, I think it's great that the Mariners are doing well, so many have forgotten they were once a powerhouse in this league for so long. Possession, shots and passes only just favoured the home side in a tightly contested match which gave the Mariners their first clean sheet since April of 2015, as well as their first home win of this season.
— #CCMFC (@CCMariners) November 27, 2016
GOAL OF THE WEEK
Didn't think this boy would have the level of impact that he has, but boy oh boy doesn't Marco Rojas just dazzle every week. The Kiwi winger made it look easy, stealing the ball from midfield, running the by line almost completely unopposed and slotting it home with ease. He simply loves playing against Newcastle, scoring some absolute belters against the Jets in his last Victory stint between 2011-2013. You can add this one to that list.
THE UNHERALDED HERO
Ah, you've gotta love emergency debuts. Matt Acton was forced into action for Melbourne Victory despite only being signed as an injury replacement two days prior to matchday. The former Roar reserve showed some nerves getting his first start with the club but performed well enough and kept a clean sheet against the Jets. Whether Lawrence Thomas is well enough to play again is yet to be seen, but credit to Acton for stepping up to the plate on such short notice.
Jumpei Kusukami has also dazzled in his short time so far at Western Sydney. The Japanese attacker scored his first goal of the season, but has also flown a little bit under the radar. His presence adds a different dynamic to the Wanderers attack, he's a player that can quietly get under the skin of his opponents and cause some real havoc in the front third.
I'm loving the form players in the league at the moment. Bruno Fornaroli is the obvious one, but Marco Rojas has picked up where he left off last time he played A League, scoring goals and terrorising fullbacks whenever he runs. Wellington's Roy Krishna is also off to a good start with 5 goals in 4 games for the Phoenix. It also shows that the quality of our top players is improving, which in turn helps the competition as a whole.
Okay, has anyone else noticed a theme with misses this season? There's been quite a few from inside the 6 yard box that have been harder to miss! We saw Morten Norstrand's awful miss just two weeks ago, Besart Berisha has missed a few sitters, including last round, that he would normally eat for breakfast. This week we also saw Brendan Santalab rocket his shot sky high over the crossbar against Brisbane. Come on boys, I know sometimes goals are hard to come by. But when they come inside 6 yards, they're on a platter for you!
Not A League related but on a serious note, there is an old saying that has a lot of significance for me.
No one should go to the football and not come home.
The plane crash in Colombia has left the world and football community reeling. The plane was carrying 75 people, and of those people the Brazilian team of Chapecoense heading to their Copa Sudamericana first leg final in Colombia. Their story was compared to the fairytale run of Leicester City last season. I really feel for all the family and friends of all those victims. Prayers, love and thoughts to those in Brazil and Colombia.
This week it's directed at a few people in the North End, who were formerly of the North Terrace active support. They had their moments, provided some great atmosphere while they were around. But now that they've ceased, they should come to the football to support the team.
Booing and jeering fans who want to chant and be there is just down right despicable. You've no right to tell other supporters what to do. You had your chance, you didn't want to keep fighting for the team you supposedly love. We'll be there week in week out, yelling, chanting, cheering, whether you like it or not. So step aside, sit down and let us continue to support the boys.
With that attitude, you're not welcome here.