Round 2 Review: Walking away losers
Our A-League and W-League sides have unfortunately not taken any points from their respective away trips this round.
The day started with our W-League team in action against Canberra. Goals to Michelle Heyman and Nickoletta Flannery meant that Jenna McCormick's equaliser following the Heyman goal counted for nothing in terms of the result. Here's what we learned from the spirited performance of our City girls today:
Samantha Johnson Doesn't Mind Playing with Fire
Whilst I admire the boldness of how Johnson plays, whether that's going strongly into a tackle or pressing up very high to either join in with our attacking play or breaking up an opposition attack, she needs to make sure that she's not caught out of position and forced to sprint back in defensive transition.
It’s great to have ambition, but don't tire yourself out by doing it.
The Sooner Alex Chidiac and Chinatsu Kira Play Regularly The Better
Our first two games have seen our girls in the midfield and attacking thirds not match their best intentions and effort with that final killer instinct.
It remains to be seen how much Chidiac and Kira will aid our evident problems in midfield and attack, though they are two players that we have to trust more often as the season progresses.
In Kira's case, in particular, silver service like the ball she gave to Jenna McCormick for our equalising goal in this game will go a long way to aiding our current attacking deficiencies.
Praise must go to the second-half attacking efforts of Hollie Palmer, who, along with Kira, was our most-likely player to make things happen in terms of goals and goalscoring chances.
Whoever Emma Checker Replaces Is Going To Be Quite Unlucky
Excluding the defending that lead to Canberra's first goal in this game, our defence has been solid so far this season. Whether it's Tori Tumeth, Samantha Johnson or Jenna McCormick (who would more likely just move into midfield), it would be a harsh call to drop any of them. You can't, of course, keep your skipper on the bench for too long if he or she isn’t injured, so Checker's return to the starting line-up is inevitable you'd think. Whoever makes way for her will be interesting...
Next up for the W-League side is a derby against arch-rivals Melbourne Victory. They certainly gave a lot of effort against Canberra, but that plus some goals will go a long way towards the three points next time out.
Now, turning to our A-League lads, who travelled to Adelaide and came home with nothing courtesy of goals to Tomi Juric and Stefan Mauk. Here's what we learned from their performance:
Ben Garuccio Has Another Home at Right-Back
Had you told me when we re-signed him that Ben Garuccio's new role for the team would be as a right-back, I would have said that there's more of a chance of me flying to the moon.
It may only be early in the season, but credit has to go to Garuccio for adapting to his new role quite well; so well that he's currently keeping a more-natural right-back in Scott Galloway out of the starting line-up.
Let's Stop the Ill-Discipline, Please
Last week we had Adrian Luna's not-so-meaty but needless tackle that resulted in a second yellow card, this week we see a mistimed and uncharacteristic tackle from our fearless leader Scott Jamieson that leads to the same outcome.
Luckily, Luna's actions didn't ultimately affect last week's result, but Jamieson's did this week - not to mention that the first yellow card, issued for comments towards the referee, was totally needless too. These sorts of disciplinary errors cannot afford to continue, it's that simple.
The Red Card Changed the Game
Before the Jamieson dismissal, this contest, at the very least, had a solid point away from home written all over it. Then came the double-whammy of the Jamieson dismissal and the resulting Tomi Juric goal, and all of a sudden it was a bridge too far.
Our squad seemingly look up to Jamo, and rightly so, but they've got every right to be critical of his actions here, as they did play a big part in our team's second-half collapse.
The A-League boys will have a relatively long time to think about this result and reflect on what went wrong, as their next game is 14 days away when they welcome Western United to AAMI Park for a first home game of the season. Better attacking, better defending and better discipline will be required to bounce back in the best possible way from this disappointing result.