Shane Warne, Charlie Sheen, Matthew Newton, Steven Bradbury, David Hasselhoff, Meat Loaf, Lindsay Lohan, Andrew O’Keefe, Sara-Marie, the yellow Wiggle, the Chilean Miners, Bouncer from Neighbours, the Southern Star Observation wheel, that homeless busker who bangs plastic buckets, and everyone’s favourite football pundit, Mark Bosnich. Big names who’ve all been written off at some point.
Given the displays offered up in 2011, you can now add Melbourne Victory Football Club to that list. Especially after they imperiously stormed to a 1-0 lead against Victory Old Boys, only to prove their peerless ability to blow opportunities, throwing away their lead in the way we’ve come to expect from
HMS Muscat’s Mehmet Durakovic’s men.
This majestic Victory side have an impressive habit of maintaining just enough composure to concoct new and imaginative modes of failure.
“The Leaping Esky”, the big boned Costa Rican who doesn’t know where he’ll be at the end of the year, led by example. Where
Harry Kewell others would have smashed the ball home from twelve yards, instead Carlos weakly wafted it toward the hands of Clint Bolton.
Inspired by El Zorro’s decision to prod the ball into the path of the diving custodian, the Victory back four then cleverly decided to give Matt Thompson and Alex Terra enough time and space to make a roast dinner, have a cup of tea and finally pick their spot, and lo and behold it was 1-3. After that it was just a case of making sure that Victory regularly worked themselves into the centre circle to initiate their famous short, sharp passing™ game, only to give it away needlessly.
Post-match Mehm was asked whether JVS’ tactical switch from a 3-4-3 to a 4-3-3 had anything to do with the turnaround in the result. Durakovic replied “I don’t think so”, before going off to look up the word tactics in his Dictionary. He came back clearly dumbfounded, mumbling, “that’s football”. For crying out loud Mehm! The Ancelottery just wants the truth. But we can’t handle the truth. The fact is we were outplayed by our arch rivals.
And now we go to Brisbane and Gosford in the space of a week, in search of a pair of results. Preferably not losses. Could it be that the greatest trick Victory ever pulled off was convincing the world that they’re rubbish? Let’s hope so.