2011-2012 Season in Review
Gold Coast United FC - Hyundai A-League
3rd Place - Qualified for Playoffs
Standings | Past Positions | Fixtures - The second half of the season was a dream. In our final 10 matches, we won 8, including an amazing final match against the Brisbane Roar, our main rival. Not only did we meet our goal of qualifying for the playoffs, we matched our best finish ever. I had very slim hopes for the playoffs, but I was happy just to make them and have an opportunity.
The way the playoffs work in the A-League is different. The top 2 teams play in a two match series called the Major Playoff. The teams finishing 3rd to 5th, play in the Minor Playoff, but only in one mathc, winner-take-all games. So, 3rd plays 6th and 4th plays 5th. The winners play each other. The winner of the minor playoff plays the loser of the Major Playoff in what is called the Preliminary Playoff. Finally, the winner of the Preliminary Playoff plays the winner of the Major Playoff in the Grand Final for the top winner in Australian football.
A-League Finals Minor Semi Final
Gold Coast United FC 2 - 0 Central Coast Mariners
Our first match was against a squad that we had won two of our three matches against, so I was feeling confident. We dominated this match fairly heavily and took the lead off a corner in the 7th minute. With a 65% possession, this match was ours.
A-League Finals Minor Final
Gold Coast United FC 2e - 1 Brisbane Roar FC
Ahh, meeting our rivals against so soon after spanking them 4-1 in the final match of the season This match...was different. Scoreless after 90 minutes, extra time was needed. Brisbane took the lead in the 109th minute and I figured
A-League Finals Preliminary Final
Gold Coast United FC 3e - 2 Sydney FC
This was set to be a difficult match right from the beginning. Sydney FC won the league during the season and it was going to be hard to overcome this as we lost all 3 matches against them. While Sydney FC went down to 10 men early in the 2nd half, they still held on for the tie at 90 minutes. However, Minnecon scored on an amazing cut in from the left side to put us over and into the Grand Final!
A-League Finals Grand Final
Newcastle United Jets 2 - 0 Gold Coast United FC
The season matches against Newcastle was 1-1-1. Even though the matches was fairly even, they capitalized on their chances, while we squandered ours. Still, we finished runners up to the Champions, not bad when we were predicted for a 9th place finish.
Players of Note...
Ante Rozic - D C - Not only was Rozic my best defender, he was also a menace on attacking corners. With his help, we led the league in goals from corners.
Jason Spagnuolo - M L, AM RL - I brought in Spagnuolo in the opening of the mid-season transfer window from Adelaide City from the lower leagues in Australia. Quietly, he ended up leading the A-league in assists. I'm curious as to what he'll do in a full season!
Cristiano - ST - Cristiano tied the league with two others for most goals in the season. Unfortunately, I have a problem. I can't renew his contract because when I do, they tell me I already have a marquee player. It stupid because the marquee player I already have....is Cristiano!!! I took a look at the bugs forum and apparently, I'm not the only one with this issue. While they are aware, it looks like I'll lose Cristiano at the end of this season do to this bug.
Finances - Our owner gave us a lump sum investment over over $6 million early in the season, which has covered operating costs. They don't like my salary, but are putting up with it because we've done so well.
Facilities - The rent is annoying, but not much I can do about it. It's absurding high, over double what some other teams pay, no even including the gate receipt clause.
- Golden Boot - Cristiano - 3rd Place
- Manager of the Year - Cerud - 3rd Place
- PFA A-League Team of the Year - Ante Rozic (D C)
- Fans' Player of the Year - Ante Rozic
- Finished with a playoff spot - Achieved! We finished in 3rd place.
- Hire in new (and decent!) staff - Achieved. New staff is decent, although not exceptional.
- Begin the rebuild process of the very depleted squad - Achieved. Although we did go over budget.
- Bring in a marquee player - Achieved! Cristiano
I have one year left on my contract with Gold Coast United FC. I'm scared about losing over half my starting line as they all want marquee contracts now. Not too sure how that's going to work, but we'll see. I'll definitely stick around this year and see if I can help the club grow.