More Thanh Words

"My name is Thanh and I'm a Blogger". Now that I have admitted to that, I can say that I'm a stereotypical "geeky" Engineer who enjoys sci-fi books and movies and into all things technological. I also love music and have a passion for FOOD. I'm a social person and like to talk to people. I hate people who are fake or overly aggressive. If you're also into some serious discussion, with a pinch of sarcasm and a dash of real emotion, then please read on.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

A-League Champions - Melbourne Victory

Victory by name, victory by nature. That is how the second season of the rebranded NSL competition, the Hyunday A-League has ended tonight, with Melbourne Victory emphactically crowned champions.

On a hot summer's night, the A-League grand final was held between minor premiers Melbourne Victory and last season's minor premiers Adelaide United. The sporting mad crowd of Melbourne turned out in their masses, 55,436 to be exact, to witness the match. This crowd was a record for a domestic football game. Myself and a couple of friends had managed to get tickets, seated in level 3 row X, the last row in the stadium. That didn't matter, the view from up there is great in Telstra Dome, and we were there to cheer on our team, the Victory.

The game started with a bang from the start. Melbourne looked sharp, whereas Adelaide looked lethargic. An early, slightly contentious, goal from Archie Thompson set things rolling for what was to become a memorable night. Adelaide didn't help their own cause when trailing by getting a man sent off for a very cheap second yellow card.

Victory capitalised on a one man advantage and played some fabolous football. They attacked endlessly, with passes that kept finding Thompson, who worked a lot of magic. By half time, Victory were 3-0 up, and the crowd were in ruptures when Archie got a hat trick of goals. They were all nicely set up plays where he had shots right in front and just pushed them past the keeper.

I was talking to my friend Justin, who said we shouldn't celebrate just yet since there were many previous NSL finals where the trailing 0-3 team went on to level the match and win in penalties. However, when Archie scored his fourth goal, the crowd were all bowing to the new master. After the 4th goal, when the crowd knew the match was pretty much over, the unbanned Mexican wave got going around the stadium. It was a great sight, with the top level and bottom level waves out of sync and spiralling 3 times around the stadium. Why is there a need to ban the wave when it is done properly and nothing untowards is thrown. It's just another case of too much administration when they tried to ban the wave at the MCG.

Anyway, just as I thought that would be all the goals for the night, the Archie Thompson show was not yet ready to pack up. Despite having cramps, Archie threw in one last effort and scored his 5th goal. Totally unbelievable. This got the crowd going again. Thompson was then substituted off. His replacement, Kristian Sarkies, decided to get in on the act as well, and put through one last goal to put an exclamation mark on the victory.

What a fabolous night it was for Australia football and Melbourne Victory. The emphatic win was totally deserved, with Victory clearly the best team all season. Hopefully football will go from strength to strength in this country on the back of the A-leauge and international achievements by the Socceroos. There's enough room in this country for all codes of football. There's no need to choose one over the other, they can be enjoyed simultaneously.

Go Victory, Premiers for 2006-2007.

Pre match singing of the National Anthem.

The action during the middle stages.

Post match celebrations by the victorious Melbourne Victory.


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