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    A Land Down Under
  1. Only 11 players in that Australian squad with more than 10 caps.
  2. August 2012 The draw for the second round of the League Cup saw another home tie for Australia, this one against Premier League club Queens Park Rangers, to take place on August 28. In other cup news, the draw for the opening round of the Football League Trophy took place, with Australia drawn at home against fellow League One side Brentford. The game will be played on September 4. August 21, 2012 Football League One Australia v Notts County Meadow Lane, Nottingham Buoyed by their success against Watford, Australia headed into their first league game of the season full of confidence. Into the squad for the first time came Scott McDonald who had finally recovered from a back strain that had seen him injured since his arrival at the club. Things didn't quite go to plan after kickoff though, with Martin Devaney pouncing on a rebound after André Boucaud's shot was saved to put Notts in front after just fifty-eight seconds. Down 1-0 early, Australia's first chance on goal didn't come until the twentieth minute, and even it was a Tommy Oar shot that went wide. The score remained as it was until half time, with the closest either side came to scoring was Australia through Archie Thompson in the one minute of injury time, with his shot hitting the post and going out. In the fifty-eighth minute McDonald finally made his appearance, replacing Nikita Rukavytsya, and his impact was almost immediate, winning a penalty just five minutes later and getting Neal Bishop sent off in the process. Up stepped Tim Cahill who converted to level the scores. Despite being down to ten men, it was Notts County who had the best chances to break the deadlock in the remainder of the game, however no one was able to find the back of the net and the game finished 1-1. Final Score Australia 1 (Cahill pen 63') Notts County 1 (Devaney 1', Bishop sent off 63') Attendance: 6,761 at Meadow Lane
  3. Oops, don't know how I got those dates that wrong August 1, 2012 Australia v Leicester City Craven Cottage, London Higher league opposition was the name of the game today, with Championship side Leicester City coming to visit. And it was another day, another comically inept performance going forward. Numerous chances were spurned while at the other end Kiwi Chris Wood struck twice to make it 2-0 at half time. After half time Leicester dominated without being able to find a third goal and Australia's day went from bad to worse in the seventy-fourth minute when Lucas Neill was shown a straight red card for a vicious tackle on Anthony Knockaert. Final Score Australia 0 (Neill sent off 74') Leicester City 2 (Wood 32', 43') Attendance: 2,044 at Craven Cottage August 4, 2012 Australia v Hednesford Town Keys Park, Hednesford The opponent for Australia's final pre-season friendly was Northern Premier League side Hednesford Town. And the less said about this game the better. Once again Australia's efforts in going forward bordered in incompetence as the side managed to complete a fourth game without troubling the scorers. A hell of a lot of improvement is required before the side's first competitive game in ten days time. Final Score Australia 0 Hednesford Town 0 Attendance: 319 at Keys Park August 2012 With just over a week until the start of the league season, Australia leads the way in the injury table with no less than eight players currently on the shelf. The worst of these include: Jason Culina (damaged knee cartilage) up to 2 months Mark Milligan (twisted ankle) 4-5 weeks Harry Kewell (thigh strain) 2-3 weeks Brett Emerton (torn ankle ligaments) 2-3 weeks In other news, Manchester City defeated Chelsea on penalties to claim the Community Shield. August 14, 2012 League Cup First Round Australia v Watford Craven Cottage, London An almost perfect start for Australia with Brett Holman heading just wide a mere thirty seconds into the game. The early dominance continued and for once it was not wasted with a Holman cross into the box being headed home by who else but Tim Cahill to give Australia the lead in the eighth minute. Holman then proceeded to spurn another chance just five minutes later, however there were more celebrations in the twenty-second minute when Archie Thompson strolled through the Watford defence to make it 2-0. The visitors thought they had pulled out back thanks to Matej Vydra in the thirty-sixth minute, only for the linesman to raise his flag. Having received that reprieve, Australia went on to extend their lead once more before half time, with Archie Thompson bagging his second. The struggles of the pre-season friendlies seemed years in the past as the side marched off 3-0 up. Returning for the second half, Australia thought they had put the game well beyond Watford's reach in the fifty-seventh minute, but for the second time in the game the flag was raised for offside, this time denying Tommy Oar a goal. The following minutes left no doubt, with first Archie Thompson on the volley from the edge of the box to complete his hat trick, and then Tommy Oar making up for the one ruled offside. With the game well and truly in the bag, substitutions were made with Eli Babalj replacing the hat trick hero, Mark Bresciano coming on for Tim Cahill, and Rhys Williams replacing Chris Herd. And Bresciano nearly made it six of the best for Australia in the final minute of the game, only denied by a brilliant save from Manuel Almunia. Final Score Australia 5 (Cahill 8', Thompson 22', 42', 61', Oar 64') Watford 0 Attendance: 1,539 at Craven Cottage
  4. July-August 2012 On July 19 the draw for the first round of the League Cup was performed, with Australia being drawn at home against Championship side Watford. The game will take place on August 14. Meanwhile Matthew Leckie was sent on loan to FSV Frankfurt for the season. July 21, 2012 Australia v Boreham Wood Meadow Park, Borehamwood Hardly a memorable performance first up. Australia struck when Luke Wilkshire curled home a free kick from just outside the box in the sixth minute. Greg Morgan equalised for the home team with a well struck effort of his own ten minutes later. The deadlock remained until early in the second half when a Chris Herd corner was headed home by a diving Shane Lowry. Herd was again the provider in the seventy-first minute when his corner was hit back to him, the subsequent cross finding the boot of substitute Tommy Oar who made it 3-1. The next goal was almost a repeat, only this time it was up the other end with Derek Nightingale heading the ball home to bring it back to 3-2. However Australia re-established their two goal lead just two minutes later when Richard Garcia got on the end of Mark Bresciano's through ball and fired past Adrian Cotton. Final Score Australia 4 (Wilkshire 6', Lowry 64', Oar 71', Garcia 85') Boreham Wood 2 (Morgan 16', Nightingale 83') Attendance: 465 at Meadow Park July 24, 2012 Australia v Southend United Roots Hall, Southend-on-Sea Next up was a friendly against Football League opposition in the form of League Two side Southend United. The home side was well on top early, with Elliot Benyon pouncing on a poor back pass from Luke Wilkshire but firing wide. Two minutes later he made no such mistake, taking the ball from Lucas Neill and putting it past Mark Schwarzer to give Southend a 1-0 lead. Things got no better for Australia in the rest of the half, with the side registering just a single shot and going 2-0 down when Benyon scored again. Five substitutions were made at half time and a further five halfway through the half, but they made little impact as Southend held on for the win. Final Score Australia 0 Southend United 2 (Benyon 6', 33') Attendance: 1,978 at Roots Hall July 28, 2012 Australia v Gillingham Craven Cottage, London Still stinging from their loss four days earlier, a vastly different Australia side lined up for their next friendly against another League Two side in Gillingham. Australia dominated the first quarter of an hour, with only bad finishing from both Brett Holman and Richard Garcia preventing them from taking an early lead. The rest of the game was a stalemate, with neither side looking like breaking the deadlock and numerous substitutions from both sides had no effect on the score line which ended at 0-0. Final Score Australia 0 Gillingham 0 Attendance: 1,435 at Craven Cottage
  5. July 2012 The first order of business was to find the club a home ground, preferably in London due to the city's population of Australian expats. After several meetings between Lowy and various clubs, it was eventually decided to enter into a ground share with Premier League club Fulham at their Craven Cottage ground which had been home to several Australian international games the previous decade. Next it was time for the playing squad. Over the following weeks the club signed 39 of Australia's best players for undisclosed amounts. The initial squad was as follows: Eli Babalj (Melbourne Heart) Mark Bresciano (Al-Nasr) Tim Cahill (Everton) Jason Culina (Newcastle Jets) Luke DeVere (Gyeongnam) Brett Emerton (Sydney FC) Adam Federici (Reading) Richard Garcia (Hull City) Chris Herd (Aston Villa) James Holland (AZ) Brett Holman (AZ) Mile Jedinak (Crystal Palace) Brad Jones (Liverpool) Harry Kewell (Melbourne Victory) Neil Kilkenny (Bristol City) Robbie Kruse (Fortuna Düsseldorf) Mitchell Langerak (Borussia Dortmund) Matthew Leckie (Borussia Mönchengladbach) Shane Lowry (Millwall) Scott McDonald (Middlesbrough) Dylan McGowan (Hearts) Ryan McGowan (Hearts) Matt McKay (Rangers) Mark Milligan (JEF United Chiba) Aaron Mooy (St Mirren) Lucas Neill (Al-Jazira) Tommy Oar (FC Utrecht) Sasa Ognenovski (Seongnam) Tom Rogic (Central Coast Mariners) Nikita Rukavytsya (Hertha BSC) Matthew Ryan (Central Coast Mariners) Adam Sarota (FC Utrecht) Mark Schwarzer (Fulham) Archie Thompson (Melbourne Victory) James Troisi (Kayserispor) Carl Valeri (Sassuolo) Luke Wilkshire (Dinamo Moscow) Rhys Williams (Middlesbrough) Michael Zullo (FC Utrecht) On the staff front, little known Rodney Walsh was appointed manager, while Graham Arnold was poached from the Central Coast Mariners to serve his assistant. Joining them in the backroom was: Frank Farina (Coach) unemployed following a stint with the Papua New Guinea national team Zelkjo Zalac (Goalkeeping Coach) from Sydney FC Ernie Merrick (Reserve Team Manager) from the Hong Kong national team John Aloisi (Under 18 Manager) from Melbourne Heart With the signings complete, the club started looking forward to their first friendly on July 21.
  6. FM 13 (Modified database) Active Leagues - England, Australia June 2012 After years of financial mismanagement and administrations, the Portsmouth Football Club was dissolved, leaving a gap in League One for the following season. While expectations were that an extra club would be promoted from League Two to fill this gap, instead the FA and the Football League were approached by Australian billionaire Frank Lowy to allow him to create his own team to take the spot in League One. Defying all odds and logic the offer was accepted. That team was Australia FC and this is their story.
  7. Hednesford Town Football Club 2012/13 Season - 11th in the Conference North P 42 W 16 D 12 L 14 GF 51 GA 49 GD +2 League Table – Positions Graph A slow start saw us winless and bottom after six games before a breakthrough 2-1 win against Boston United after spending most of the game with ten men started our rise towards midtable. After eleven games we were 12th and from that point we never moved higher than 10th or fell lower than 14th. FA Cup Fixtures We started off with victories against lower league Bedworth United and Marine before requiring a replay to get past Rushall Olympic and into the First Round proper. Our opponent there was League One side Tranmere Rovers who we put in a credible performance against before eventually going down 4-2. FA Trophy Our FA Trophy campaign typified our main problem this season, an inability to put the ball in the back of the net when we were dominating. A 0-0 draw against Vauxhall Motors at home was followed by a 0-0 draw away, before going out 6-5 on penalties. The Squad Players – Transfers Rob Gier – English born Philippines international. Was the only player in the team to gain an average rating of at least seven. Craig Nelthorpe – our best midfielder. 6 goals and 11 assists on the left and was named Man of the Match on six occasions. Richard Walker – the best of a bad bunch as far as our strikers went. The 35 year old topped our scoring charts with 9 goals in 38 games (7 in 31 in the league). Season Division Pos FA Cup FA Trophy ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2012/13 Conference North 11th 1st Round 3rd Qual Round Season Premier League FA Cup League Cup Champions League Europa League ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2011/12 Manchester City Arsenal Arsenal AC Milan Sporting CP 2012/13 Tottenham Hotspur Everton Chelsea Manchester City Bayer Leverkusen
  8. Hednesford Town Football Club Hednesford Town are pleased to announce the appointment of Ryan Grinter as their new manager ahead of their return to the Football Conference after a six year absence. Founded in 1880, the Staffordshire club previously had a six season run in the Conference from 1995 to 2001 and won the FA Trophy in 2004 with a 3-2 win over Canvey Island. They returned to Conference in 2005/06 but were relegated from the North division after just one season. The club also reached the final of the Welsh Cup in 1992 but were defeated 1-0 by Cardiff City.
  9. 2014/15 Season - Clyde FC 8th in the Scottish First Division P 36 W 10 D 9 L 17 GF 42 GA 61 GD -19 League Our return to the First Division after a five year absence saw us achieve our minimum aim of avoiding relegation and not a thing more, failing to defeat anyone above sixth placed Falkirk. We sat seventh for the vast majority of the season, only falling to eighth on the last day after I sent out a weak side to play Brechin with our survival already ensured. The squad will need to be strengthened if we are to continue our move up the table next season. Scottish Cup We entered in the Third Round and required a replay to knock out Third Division Alloa Athletic. A home tie against Falkirk followed and after conceding in the first minute we went down 3-1 and were eliminated. League Cup For the first time in my reign we got past the First Round, defeating Stirling Albion 3-1. Next was a trip to Dunfermline were we crashed out with a 2-0 loss. Challenge Cup Last season we caused a shock by winning this competition. This season we fell at the first hurdle, going down on penalties to Falkirk after coming from behind in extra time. Key Players Callum Gallagher - arrived on a free after being released from Rangers. Our leading goalscorer with 13 in the league and 16 in all competitions. Frankie Lannen - another new signing, this one after being let go by Dundee. Held together the centre of defence and picked up four Man of the Match performances along with six goals. Craig Sibbald - on a free from Peterhead. Six goals and eight assists made him the best of our midfield players. The Squad Transfer History Scottish Season Summary Premier League - Rangers First Division - Partick Thistle Second Division - Greenock Morton Third Division - Montrose Scottish Cup - Celtic defeated Dundee United 4-2 League Cup - Celtic defeated Partick Thistle 2-1 Challenge Cup - Queen Of The South defeated Dunfermline Athletic 4-0 Under 19 Cup - Partick Thistle defeated Celtic 4-3 on penalties (2-2 AET) Season Division Pos Scottish Cup League Cup Challenge Cup Notes ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2012/13 Third 4th 3rd Round 1st Round 2nd Round Promoted via Playoffs 2013/14 Second 1st 4th Round 1st Round Winners Promoted 2014/15 First 8th 4th Round 2nd Round 1st Round
  10. Chalked up 100 games as Clyde manager. 54 wins, 17 draws, 29 losses. Pity we celebrated this massively important milestone by losing.
  11. After slacking off for a week I’ve jumped back into my Clyde game and got the third season underway. Brought in many new players for our first season back in the First Division. As per usual we played like complete muppets in the pre-season friendlies, regardless of who the opponent was. Our attempt to defend the Challenge Cup ended in the First Round, though I did finally get beyond the First Round in the League Cup. In the league we started by getting thumped 4-0 by Queen Of The South and conceded 10 goals in the first three games. Things have looked up since then and a couple of wins has seen us move up into mid table. Still a long way to go though.
  12. Cheers guys. I honestly wasn’t sure if we were going to hold on to top spot or not near the end. In our eight games against Dumbarton (2nd) and Cowdenbeath (3rd) we picked up a grand total of three points. Fortunately we wiped the floor with everyone else. An impressive feat by those two sides considering their combined wage bill for the season was only just over half of what I was spending.
  13. 2013/14 Season - Clyde FC 1st in the Scottish Second Division P 36 W 23 D 7 L 6 GF 75 GA 32 GD +43 League After last season's promotion I set about clearing out the remaining deadwood that was left over from my predecessor's reign and brought in numerous players on free transfers to strengthen the squad. We got off to a great start, scoring for fun as we grabbed 12 wins and 3 draws from our first 16 league games. From that point on, while not quite as dominant, we did enough to keep the upper hand in our battle with Dumbarton for the title. On the last day of the season Dumbarton came to town, needing to win by at least four goals to overtake us. A 2-2 draw was enough to see us clinch the Second Division title for the fifth time and gain back-to-back promotions. Named Second Division Manager Of The Year. Scottish Cup We entered in the Third Round, defeating Edinburgh City 3-1. A journey to Dens Park to face First Division Dundee saw us receive the worst result of my career, a 6-1 defeat that saw us eliminated. League Cup A home clash with fellow Second Division side Forfar Athletic saw us a chance to get past the First Round this season. Instead we lost 4-3 in extra time and out we went. Challenge Cup Starting off with a 2-0 win over Stenhousemuir, we moved on to do battle with an old foe from the previous season in Montrose. Despite playing for over an hour with ten men, and indeed ending the match with just nine, we managed to hold on for a 3-2 win. Next up was Ayr United who fell 1-0 to a late winner from John Boyle and we were through to the Semi Finals. There we met rivals Partick Thistle in front of just under three thousand fans at Broadwood Stadium. Two first half goals from Ian Watt saw us win 2-0 and we were off to meet Ross County in the Final. The two had met in Clyde's only previous appearance in the Challenge Cup Final in 2006, with Ross County lifting the trophy that day. McDiarmid Park in Perth was the venue and we took an early lead through Phil Johnston only for Ross County to equalise just a minute later. Paul McQuade gave us back the lead only for County to once again equalise before half time. In the second half McQuade struck twice in three minutes and despite an own goal from goalkeeper Graeme Neill we held on to win 4-3 and lifted the trophy for the first time. Key Players Paul McQuade - what can I say. One of my all time best signings. Picked him up from East Fife where he'd scored four league goals in each of his two seasons. He promptly equalled that effort in our first league game of the season against Arbroath. Despite his form falling away towards the end of the season, he still topped the league's scoring charts with 25 in 31, and 29 in 38 in all competitions. Was named Second Division Player Of The Year. Graham Webster - signed on a free from Forfar. Dominated on the left side of midfield, ending the season with 10 goals in the league. Phil Johnston - on a free from Airdrie. Started slowly but by the end of the season had scored 10 goals and made 13 assists. The Squad Other Competitions Premier League - Rangers First Division - Livingston Third Divison - Elgin City Scottish Cup - Celtic defeated Ross County 6-0 League Cup - Motherwell defeated Celtic 6-5 on penalties (1-1 AET) Under 19 Cup - Hearts defeated St Mirren 3-2 Champions League - Real Madrid defeated Manchester City 4-3 on penalties (1-1 AET) Europa League - Atletico Madrid defeated Inter Milan 6-5 on penalties (0-0 AET) Season Division Pos Scottish Cup League Cup Challenge Cup Notes ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2012/13 Third 4th 3rd Round 1st Round 2nd Round Promoted via Playoffs 2013/14 Second 1st 4th Round 1st Round Winners Promoted
  14. 2012/13 Season - Clyde FC 4th in the Scottish Third Division P 36 W 17 D 6 L 13 GF 57 GA 48 GD +9 League An up and down season that saw many winning streaks, losing streaks and streaks where we simply couldn't find the back of the net no matter what we tried. With three games remaining we found ourselves sitting just outside the playoffs with games against the three sides immediately above us. A 5-1 hammering of Albion Rovers was followed up with a 2-0 win against Montrose, leaving us requiring just a point against Alloa Athletic on the final day of the season to clinch the last playoff place. This was achieved with a late 1-1 draw. The playoffs saw us meet the 9th placed side from the Second Division in Elgin City. A 1-1 draw at home was followed by a 3-2 win away after we had trailed 2-1 with fifteen minutes remaining. The 4-3 aggregate win saw us through to meet Albion Rovers in the final. In the first leg John Boyle went crazy, slamming home four goals in the opening 34 minutes as we ran out 6-2 winners. Boyle continued on his merry way in the second leg, scoring another two goals including a late equaliser as we secured a 3-3 draw. The 9-5 aggregate scoreline saw promotion attained, ending a three season stint in the basement of the Scottish Football League. This led to me being voted the Third Division Manager of the Year. Scottish Cup Entering in the Second Round, we defeated Forres Mechanics 3-0 before being eliminated in the following round by First Division Ross County. League Cup Our campaign in this competition ended almost before it had started with a crushing 5-0 defeat at the hands of recently relegated Dunfermline Athletic. Challenge Cup Despite going down to ten men just before half time, a late goal saw us secure a surprise 1-0 win against Second Division Airdrie United in the First Round. The Second Round saw us drawn against First Division side Livingston and despite holding them in the first half, they broke through in the second for a 3-0 victory. Key Players Ian Watt - signed on a free from Alloa. 21 goals and 13 assists in 38 league games. John Boyle - signed on a free from Airdrie. Was inconsistent for much of the season but turned it on when it mattered most, with 6 goals over the two legs of the Playoff Final. 15 goals and 6 assists overall. Declan Gallagher - our rock in defence. Scored five goals, all from corners, and was Man of the Match on eight occasions. The Squad Other Competitions Premier League - Celtic First Division - Dunfermline Athletic Second Divison - Queen Of The South Scottish Cup - Partick Thistle defeated Rangers 3-1 League Cup - Celtic defeated Rangers 4-2 on penalties (0-0 AET) Challenge Cup - Queen Of The South defeated Dunfermline Athletic 4-3 on penalties (1-1 AET) Under 19 Cup - Dundee United defeated Aberdeen 5-4 on penalties (0-0 AET) Champions League - Real Madrid defeated Manchester City 4-1 Europa League - Arsenal defeated Villarreal 2-0 Season Division Pos Scottish Cup League Cup Challenge Cup Notes ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2012/13 Third 4th 3rd Round 1st Round 2nd Round Promoted via Playoffs
  15. Played my first competive match in the Challenge Cup away against Second Division Airdrie United. Went down to 10 men when one of my defenders got shown a straight red just before half time. Expected them to belt us after that. Instead we held on and then nicked a late winner. Get in as they say.