Underwhelming is the one word that could be used to describe the 2011/12 season of Melbourne Victory.
Underwhelming is the one word that could be used to describe the 2011/12 season of Melbourne Victory... and it started with such promise.
When Harry Kewell came to town it looked for all the world like the Victory would be a contender, but alas not even the footballing wizard could solve the club-s problems on the pitch, even with a supporting cast that included Carlos Hernandez, James Jeggo and Ante Covic to name a few.
Having said that while the season didn-t contain finals the Victory did score some of the best goals of the season and they were true entertainers, even if they were predictable enough to have those who loved to back the draw with the TAB rolling in money.
Putting it bluntly, this was woeful and where the Victory fell down and that might be what you get when you load your squad with attacking players and leave the defence skint.
Of their defence only goalkeeper Ante Covic can truly put his hand up and say he had a great season. The veteran keeper came in after Tando Velaphi suffered a nasty injury, and he did a superb job, leading the league in saves made with 109.
Late in the season they brought in Mark Milligan and Ubay Luzardo to tighten things at the back and while Milligan was good, the Spaniard proved to be a bust, looking slow and awkward at times.
Their 43 goals conceded was only surpassed by Adelaide United.
Jimmy Jeggo continued to show he is a rising star, so did Isaka Cernak and Carlos Hernandez, was... well Carlos Hernandez, sublime at times, not really there at others but when he was it made a huge difference and his play in behind Kewell and Archie Thompson was a joy to watch.
This was never going to be a problem with Kewell, Danny Alsopp, Hernandez and Thompson having a dig up front at various times, goals would come.
At the end of the year Hernandez led the goal count, even snagged the official Goal of the Year too, what was worrying was Archie-s inability to finish at the end of the season and as he gets older this could be a worrying trend.
The big question is will the appointment of Ange Postecoglou mean Kewell and Hernandez return?
Three coaches tried and ironically the one who had the least games in charge had the best record, Kevin Muscat proving he is still a winner.
Mehmet Durakovic: 14 games, 3 wins, 5 losses, 6 draws; 15 points from a possible 42. That would be enough to see him sacked mid-season.
Kevin Muscat: 1 match, 1 win, 0 losses, 0 draws; 3 points from a possible 3
Jim Magilton: 12 games, 2 wins, 5 losses, 5 draws; 11 points from a possible 36. Not a great effort from the merchant of the long-ball game.
The bottom line is a lot was expected of the league-s ‘biggest club- and they failed to deliver in spectacular fashion, despite having a roster which was the envy of many managers. It was a season to forget.
Overall Grade: D-