Fallout from Fury axing
Potential young star threatens to walk
SO infuriated by the Fury’s A-L e a g u e a x i n g , o n e o f Townsville’s brightest football t alents, David Han, threatened to quit.
The blood has cooled in the days that have followed, but the feeling of ‘‘ what now?’’ still lingers for the 17-yearold.
And the gifted attacking midfielder is far from alone.
Like many of his North Queensland Razorback State League teammates, Han’s dream to play for the Fury was ripped away by Football Federat i o n Austral i a o n Tuesday. The avenue t o greatness has now just become a lot harder.
I t was no pipe dream, either, Han along with five or six of his Razorback mates were high on the Fury radar.
‘‘ I saw on the news the Fury were axed and I told my dad I would quit soccer, I was pretty serious,’’ he said.
‘‘ I just felt let down. The Fury being gone just made me think again about my future, ‘ what can I do now? What do I have to do? Do I have to go back down to Sydney?’ So I’ve been think- ing a lot over the last couple of days.’’
For the moment Han, who r ecently r epresented t he Australia Schoolboys on a tour of Asia, reckons he will stay in North Queensland and play for the Razorbacks, but he’s not sure for how long.
‘‘ At the moment I’m still thinking,’’ said Han, who played and impressed in Ufuk Talay’s All Star tribute game last month.
‘‘ A lot of players want to get down south now. With the Fury gone all the opportunity is down south . . . you have to be pretty lucky ( to get noticed) in North Queensland now.’’
That’s the reality that faces all North Queenslanders.
Razorbacks mentor and exFury goalkeeping coach Ken Mitchell’s heart sank when he heard the announcement.
He conceded he dreaded the prospect of having to face his players at training after FFA made the controversial call.
‘‘ How do ( children) pursue their dreams now? We’ll have to sit down and take stock of what happens now with the development programs that Football Queensland have in place,’’ he said.
‘‘ They’re still there and they won’t be ignored. How do we take them further? Now with the Fury gone young players will either have to stay in the State League for a short time and hopefully get noticed or take a bigger chance and move on – that’s inevitable.’’
The key, Mitchell said, was t o m a k e t h e p a t h w a y through the QSL to the rem a i n i n g Q u e e n s l a n d A-League teams accessible.
The Razorbacks will continue to do that and believe they have assembled a team capable of success in 2011.
But perhaps just as pressing a concern is the potential impact the loss of the Fury may have on disillusioned supporters and, in turn, junior playing numbers.
With more than 10,000 junior registered players across the North, the strength is still there, but Mitchell admitted the work to keep it that way just got a little bit harder.
‘‘ But as kids reach maturity and other options become available such as other sports . . . if there’s nothing visible here, nothing physical to touch, or smell or see then they move on.’’