A-Leagues Men and Women 2021/22 Off Season Thread

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giggler99

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The Cows are having a bad week.
yep

Bulls in turmoil as pair of former Socceroos quit on eve of A-League season


Macarthur FC’s preparations for the new A-League Men season are in disarray after the shock retirement of newly appointed captain Adam Federici – just days after his predecessor Mark Milligan suddenly quit his role as an assistant coach.

Federici was only confirmed as skipper less than a month ago after captaincy was vacated by Milligan, who wore the armband in their inaugural campaign and had agreed to become an assistant to head coach Ante Milicic, with a view to one day replacing him.
But the 36-year-old goalkeeper, who played in the English Premier League for Reading and AFC Bournemouth before returning to Australia last year, told teammates on Friday he was calling time on his career, effective immediately, due to a knee injury.

“I have been so fortunate to have the career I’ve had,” he said.

“While I would’ve love to lead the Bulls this season, my body is in a different position and cannot continue. Through my journey I have played with wonderful coaches, players and clubs and I’m grateful that I got to finish my career on my home turf.”

There are, however, rumblings that all is not well behind the scenes at the south-west Sydney outfit, with Federici’s retirement coming just days after Milligan walked out on the club – less than a month out from the new A-League campaign.

The former Socceroos captain and four-time World Cup representative played 27 times for Macarthur last season as they finished sixth on the ladder and came to within one match of a grand final appearance in their A-League debut.

Widely seen as one of Australia’s best young coaching prospects, the Bulls even had an informal succession plan in place, in which he was to succeed Milicic as the club’s A-League coach either next season or the one after.

Milligan, who has signed on with ViacomCBS as a pundit for Network Ten and Paramount+’s coverage of the A-Leagues, has been contacted for comment, as has Macarthur FC. Sources say Milligan’s decision to quit was due to disagreements over the nature of his role and the club’s general football direction.

The Bulls were trounced 5-0 in a pre-season match against Sydney FC last weekend, after which sources claim some of the recent friction came to a head.
Macarthur FC is due to play their first A-League match on November 21 against Wellington Phoenix, having embarked on a major recruitment spree over the off-season which has netted them the signatures of Socceroo Tomi Juric, Johnny Warren Medal winner Ulises Davila, ex-Melbourne City winger Craig Noone, and former Central Coast Mariners playmaker Daniel De Silva.

As a result, expectations are high, but the departures of both Federici and Milligan will present an unwanted level of disruption so close to the start of the season.

The loss of Federici in particular is a blow – he was one of the A-League’s top goalkeepers last season, with many of the view his form was deserving of a Socceroos recall. The only other goalkeeper on Macarthur’s books is Nick Suman, who has played just a handful of senior games. The A-League’s transfer window shut last week, meaning any replacement signings must be free agents in order for them to be registered in Macarthur’s squad.

 

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Zidane98

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Elvis has a habit of being Lionel Messi right up until shooting or playing a final ball at which time he becomes Ricky Diaco. Maybe he can develop that part of his game further.
 

Zidane98

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What's the story on the "Nix this season? Surely with vaccination rates high now they should be allowed to travel back and forth now in a bubble so to speak.


jd2010 any new over there on NZ/Aus travel bubble?
 

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giggler99

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This is long overdue the return of two legged finals!

Under the new finals format for the Isuzu UTE A-League, the team finishing third on the ladder will host the side that comes sixth, while fourth will play fifth, both ties played as single finals.

The sides that finished first and second on the ladder will play the two qualifiers in home-and-away semifinals over two weekends, before the Grand Final follows on the fourth weekend of the finals.

“The new format rewards the sides that finish first and second by eliminating the one-off semifinals, and it rewards the fans who we know love finals football,” said O’Rourke.


 

General Giant

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This is long overdue the return of two legged finals!

Under the new finals format for the Isuzu UTE A-League, the team finishing third on the ladder will host the side that comes sixth, while fourth will play fifth, both ties played as single finals.

The sides that finished first and second on the ladder will play the two qualifiers in home-and-away semifinals over two weekends, before the Grand Final follows on the fourth weekend of the finals.

“The new format rewards the sides that finish first and second by eliminating the one-off semifinals, and it rewards the fans who we know love finals football,” said O’Rourke.


Love it.
 

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