Four Four Two

Straight from the dugout

Australian Four Four Two - - WELCOME - You can fol­low me or send me a tweet on @Kev­inAirs442 Kevin Airs Edi­tor

There's an amaz­ing month of foot­ball ahead here in Australia. The A-League reaches its peak with the show­piece Grand Fi­nal, very swiftly fol­lowed by the star-stud­ded vis­its of Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur and Chelsea. With Perth Glory's salary cap rort cost­ing them a spot in the fi­nals (and a hefty fine), the battle for the dunny seat will be in­tense. As we go to press, all six teams are still in the run­ning but few could deny the top four's claim for the ti­tle. Mel­bourne Victory have been a force of na­ture this sea­son. Their at­tack­ing might has been a plea­sure to watch as they tore ri­vals apart. While the de­fence of­ten looked shaky – es­pe­cially while Delpierre was out in­jured mid sea­son – the breath­tak­ing strike­force of Ber­isha, Bar­barouses, Archie, Fin­kler and Khal­fal­lah brought home the points to be wor­thy Premiers. Syd­ney's mid-sea­son re­vival un­der Arnie post-Asian Cup came just too late to nick the Pre­mier's Plate from Victory – but with a full ros­ter, in­jury-free next year, it would be a brave man who bets against them. Mean­while Ade­laide, although in­con­sis­tent, were foot­ball dy­na­mite when they hit their straps. Gom­bau's Span­ish quar­tet plus Ar­gen­tinean Car­r­usca brought Latin flair, bol­stered by lo­cal tal­ent, not least Tarek El­rich who showed his own South Amer­i­can skills with his Maradona-es­que run down the wing to score in the fi­nal round. And fi­nally Ernie Mer­rick – the most suc­cess­ful coach in the A-League – proved he's still got it by trans­form­ing the for­tunes of Welling­ton Phoenix with a stel­lar sea­son, aided by a re­born Burns, in­spired by the as­sists of McGlinchey. Mean­while Bris­bane Roar left it late to sneak in, but showed great hope for the fu­ture with the next gen of stars they're bring­ing through like Clut and Borello, while Mel­bourne City re­lied on Aaron Mooy to do it all af­ter Duff's in­jury. Whichever way it goes, a great Grand Fi­nal lies in store (if the FFA can find a venue!) For Syd­ney though, the fun just car­ries on even af­ter the fi­nal whis­tle. Fac­ing the stars of Spurs and Chelsea in quick suc­ces­sion will be a mas­sive treat for their play­ers – and fans across the coun­try will head to ANZ Sta­dium to soak it up. Get in the mood with our lengthy chat with Harry Kane... and I'll see you at the games – get in!

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