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A-League 2011-2012

Another season of the A-League has now come and gone. So how did it fare? It was a promising start: Kewell and Emerton were back in the country playing, Brisbane Roar looked unbeatable and set a new Australia record and crowds were up a little on last year. At the tail end though, Palmer lost the plot and Gold Coast folded and Tinkler tried to hand his license back. Clearly all is not well. However, I think on balance it was a good season.

Australia vs Saudi Arabia

The Socceroos were a bit scratchy in the first and the Saudis deserved their lead at the break. A devastating spell from the Aussies saw them comfortably home and they finished top of their group.

It had been a while since our last game. In addition Osieck had made some changes to the line up, eg. the return on Bresciano. So a little roughness around the edges is to be expected. The Saudis attacked well in the first half and lead twice after Brosque's first cancelled out their lead. Our defence was a little poor at times and it was disappointing to concede so close to half-time.

Thailand vs Australia

The floods in Thailand forced a change of venue, but that didn't put off the Thais. They played out of their skin and deserved something from this match. Unlike last month though, we hung tough and scored the winner through Brett Holman.

Oman vs Australia

What a difference a month makes. After an excellent effort last time, we failed to show up and went down 0-1 in an insipid performance. We really need to eliminate these poor performances from our repertoire and become more consistent. Annoying.

Australia vs Oman

A potentially tough match against a team we've struggled to beat in the past and we were without Schwarzer, Cahill and Emerton (and Kewell if you care). And we nailed it. A superb performance and a great 3-0 win. Top of the group and virtually guaranteed of progressing to the next stage.

Australia vs Malaysia

A warm up match for next week's qualifier against a weak opponent doesn't tell you a great deal. However, we looked very sharp and comfortably put them away, something we've struggled to do in the past.

All the talk in the lead up was about whether Kewell and Emerton would be selected or left with their clubs to give the A-League its dream match up. Hosieck cleverly left them out for both this match and the qualifier, thus retaining control and not devaluing selection for the Socceroos. It also gave some up-and-comers another chance to impress.

Saudi Arabia vs Australia

A difficult road trip was met with a much improved performance from the Socceroos. They triumphed comfortably 3-1. This is what we need to see. The poor performance of just a few days ago was taken on board and a much better effort (that was called for) was delivered. Good work.

Australia vs Thaliand

Our first match in our qualifying campaign for Brazil 2014 had the desired result, but our standard of play was well below par.

Pleasingly, the coach and players admitted as much. I'm sure no-one was happy to fall behind to Thailand, but at least we were able to get the job done and win. Even if we left it a little late. We must do better in our next match, a tough away game.

An Aussie Wins Le Tour

On Sunday Cadel Evans became the first Australia to win Le Tour de France. An extraordinary achievement, but how does it compare to other efforts by Australians?

Women's Football World Cup

The 2011 women's World Cup was brilliant. The level of football was superb and some of the dramatic results captivating. Australia did well but suffered from several defensive lapses. The story of the tournament was Japan though. After the natural disasters in their country earlier this year they claimed the title in amazing fashion.

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