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The Rock-itt : November 2011
The A League has started with considerable fanfare, the addition of Harry Kewell and Brett Emerton to the mix has had a good effect and game attendances have been good. I get a bit sheepish when it comes to game attendance. It‟s far too easy for older blokes like me to stay home and enjoy the coverage on Fox, I feel guilty but my lounge chair is too convenient. I‟ll go to a few this season but I‟ll pick my matches. It‟s a bit awkward writing for Rock-itt, a Sydney mag- azine because I support the Central Coast Mariners rather than Sydney. I did watch Sydney in the first season of the A League and went to every home game but it‟s too much hassle to get over the bridge to the Football Stadium, when I go I would rather go to Gosford! Manly United‟s connections to the Mariners are too strong for me to ignore. Mariners captain Alex Wilkinson played for Manly United between the old NSL closing down and the A League starting, as did John Hutchinson who is still a Mariners player though currently on loan in China. Former Manly United Head Trainer Phil Moss is now assistant manager to Graham Arnold at the Mariners. Current Manly Unit- ed defender Jimmy Oates spent last season with Mariners Youth and cannot be far from a full time contract. He is joined this season by Manly boys Justin Hayward (striker) and Dylan Mitchell (goalkeeper) who have both moved from Sydney FC Youth up to the Mariners at Gosford. I was fortunate to see the three boys play against Newcastle Jets in the first round of the National Youth League just before Rock-itt went to press. They are delighted to be in the Mariners family as is Phil Moss who I met up with at the game. Jets were great opposition espe- cially as they had another former Manly boy Chris Payne playing up front. Dylan Mitchell gave Payney the compliment of saying he was „difficult‟ to play against. He sure was, he scored the Jets goal in what ultimately was a 1-1 draw. The standard of the league our men‟s first grade team plays in is highlighted by the transition of players from the Football NSW Premier League into the A League theatre. Apart from our boys at the Mari- ners Joey Gibbs who just had a great sea- son for Manly as well as spending some time playing in Belgium is back at Sydney Youth. Fourteen out of the sixteen of Syd- ney FC‟S newly selected National Youth League squad members were all part of the NSW Premier and Super League com- petitions, Jared Lum and Blake Powell are the other returnees along with Joey. They originally came from Bonnyrigg White Ea- gles. Sydney NYL coach Ian Crook said, “W e have only selected players who we be- lieve have the potential to play in the A- League. Some of them may be able to achieve that this year and for others it might take some time but we have picked a team where everyone has the technique and attributes to make that step up. He continued; “The Sydney FC squad was selected after all members of the coaching staff spent time at NSW Premier League and NSW Super League matches throughout the winter, watching players in the first grade, as well as scouring the U20s and U18s for young talent.” The story is the same with A League teams on other States, the State League is where all the action starts. Brisbane Roar have brought in Jack Hingert from Dandenong Thunder in the Victorian Premier League, Nik Tsattalios has gone from Sutherland Sharks to W ellington Phoenix. Nikola Roganovich joined Mel- bourne Heart from Green Gully, Victoria. Sami Tesfagabr and Ambes Josief have joined Gold Coast United from W estern Strikers in South Australia The message is clear; if you live on he Northern Beaches and you aspire to a career in football Manly United is your springboard. Manly‟s First Grade and Grade 20 men have a trial night on No- vember 15th; contact Craig Midgley on firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to give it a crack. Training for the new season commences on Monday November 28th . Sorry but I have no news on the installa- tion of the synthetic pitch on Cromer Park‟s main field. At the time of writing the Manly Board is just about to meet with Council. The pitch will be in place during 2012, when in 2012 is still to be decided! You can still keep in touch with Manly United on Facebook or Twitter or by the Manly United website manlyunitedfc.com.au Goalkeeper Dylan Mitchell’s secret weapon, he strengthens his arm by wearing this watch! Good job it’s the “off” season, Matt Sim does his “hammy” on the dance floor! Jimmy Oates walks down the players race at Pluim Park Lisarow after keeping Newcastle Jets to a 1-1 draw.