FOXTEL A-League All Stars ‘like a Cup final’
I was lucky enough to be asked to join last year’s FOXTEL A-League All Stars when we faced none other than Manchester United. Although I didn’t feel I’d had my best season I was not about to turn this opportunity down.
I was lucky enough to be asked to join last year-s FOXTEL A-League All Stars when we faced none other than Manchester United. Although I didn-t feel I-d had my best season I was not about to turn this opportunity down.
Our manager was Ange Postecoglou and after only working with him for a week it was clear that he was an excellent coach. Not too long after he was appointed head coach of the Socceroos where he has already had an impact and is looking forward to leading them in the World Cup Brazil 2014.
We had a great week of training. It was nice to train with some of the best players in the league. There was a lot of media coverage and it felt like the lead up to a Cup final.
I think it is an amazing concept as it-s very rare to get an opportunity to pit your wits against the world-s best. For some of the older members of the squad it could be their last chance and for the younger members it gives them a chance to showcase their skills.
It will be interesting to see who gets voted in, but from experience I can tell everybody how worthwhile it was and is and I look forward to watching this year-s edition.
Last week saw Josep Gombau appointed manager of this year-s FOXTEL A-League All Stars after a public voting process by the fans.
After seeing what he has managed to do at Adelaide United this year, it is pretty clear why he has been chosen. He has managed to assemble a team that have tried to play football the right way all season and even when faced with a few teething problems early on.
Gombau stuck to his guns and Adelaide have gone from strength to strength and now look a real possibility to have a decent crack at taking out the Hyundai A-League title.
Adelaide-s fluid possession based style coupled with their counter attacking capabilities have made them great to watch and I can see this being transferred over to the All Stars if he is given enough time to work with the players.
Every coach is different, but it-s very refreshing to see somebody who can become so passionate on the side line.
The fans have obviously connected with this and when they scored the equaliser in a pulsating draw against Melbourne Heart Gombau celebrated like he had actually won the competition itself!
He set off towards the players and embarked on an attempted knee slide celebration, which has been replayed on numerous occasions. He slid nearly half a metre before face planting into the turf!
I-m sure that neutrals watching that game would maybe have felt that a man showing such passion would be a great leader for a one-off game against world powerhouse Juventus.
After last year-s successful inaugural game against Manchester United, it was important to follow it up with a visiting team that would capture the imagination of supporters everywhere.
Due to the success that Alessandro Del Piero has had so far at Sydney FC, it makes sense that he has been asked to wear the captain-s armband for the All Stars team.
Del Piero is one of Juventus- all-time greats and the fact that he will line up against his former club will ensure a capacity crowd.
Don-t be surprised if he appears in a Juventus shirt at some point throughout the game. If that happened, wouldn-t it be special.
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The FOXTEL A-League All Stars will come into camp on 1 August with the match to be played at ANZ Stadium on Sunday 10 August. Go to www.a-leagueallstars.com.au/tickets to buy your tickets online.
Follow all the social media chatter surrounding the match using the hash-tag #ALvJUVE