AFTER copping an unprecedented 7-2 hiding at the hands of the Central Coast Mariners last weekend, it seemed things had hit rock bottom for Sydney FC.
But somehow, the Sky Blues dug themselves an even deeper hole on Saturday night.
Up 2-nil and seemingly cruising with
just 12 minutes to play against archrivals Melbourne Victory, Sydney conceded three late goals to taste what was surely one of the club’s most bitter defeats.
In fairness, one of Melbourne’s goals was a 25-metre thunderbolt from teenage sensation Andrew Nabbout, but still there is no way Sydney should’ve surrendered its lead.
This latest setback proved too much for Sydney coach Ian Crook, who handed in his resignation on Sunday morning just six games into his reign.
I feel sorry for Crook the man – a genuinely down to earth bloke – but not Crook the coach. He was sadly out of his depth from day one and that issue was only magnified when Alessandro Del Piero was signed.
Negative tactics, mind-boggling substitutions and a generously open defence all made Crook’s tenure a forgettable one.
Crook looked a broken man after Saturday night’s heartbreak and an unfortunate confrontation with a section of furious fans after the final whistle perfectly summed up the situation.
Ex-Socceroos boss Frank Farina or former Melbourne Victory coach Ernie Merrick look the most likely candidates to become Sydney’s seventh manager in eight seasons – good luck to them!
WALLABIES GET A DOSE OF LES BLEUS
Admittedly, it wasn’t a great weekend for Aussie sport (until our Test batsmen recovered beautifully on Monday) and the Wallabies should probably count themselves lucky that our bowlers struggled in the early stages of the first Test.
Why? Because our woes with the ball in hand kept, for the most part, the Wallabies’ 33-6 horror show against the French out of the headlines.
The Aussies were simply torn apart, albeit by a very good French side, at the Stade de France in Paris to get their European spring tour off to the worst possible start.
The French dominated the Wallabies’ scrum, the defence was worse than Lance Armstrong’s and in attack we showed about as much ticker as a tanking AFL team.
Sunday morning’s result meant the Aussies went another try-less 80 minutes – Mike Harris’s boot was again our only source of points.
I’m not necessarily calling for his head because I believe a lot of blame should be aimed at the players, but Robbie Deans’ job would surely be under serious threat.
Suggestions of the Aussies going through their spring tour unbeaten were simply laughable to begin with and the weekend’s display proved that.
A tougher test awaits our rugby team this weekend, when the Wallabies will head to the hallowed turf of Twickenham to face the Poms!
A GREEN MOON RISES AT FLEMINGTON
It was great to see Green Moon, an Aussie-trained horse, claim the Melbourne Cup last Tuesday in a field that was dominated by European heavyweights.
Green Moon started at $20 and so was a somewhat surprise winner, but those in the know insisted afterwards that with gun jockey Brett Prebble in the saddle, the Lloyd Williams-owned stayer was always in with a chance.
I wish I knew that before I put money on Red Cadeaux!