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BACK ON THE HUNT- Sydney FC Season Preview 

Here we go it’s time for the start of what we can expect to be another enthralling A-League season. However for us Sydney FC fans this year is something different then recent history as fo the first time since the 15/16 season we begin a new campaign after going trophy-less in the season prior. 

While yes this isn’t new to teams in the league and obviously not new the Sydney the thing that has me so on edge for weather that form continues or not is how we come back this season after last year’s Grand Final loss to City. Now there is no disputing that City were out and put the best team last year but for us I know in my predictions video over on my YouTube channel I said Sydney would go 2nd but I’m not sure now if that was looking at things through my FC goggles. 

Luke Brattan of Sydney FC is given a red card during the A-League Grand Final (Getty)

Now to my thoughts with pre-season being over. Looking back at the friendly games that the team played they did really well, starting with two back to back 5-0 wins against Macarthur and Newcastle respectively, those results were followed by a 2-0 win against a strong NSWNPL Team in Wollongong however in the next game we went down 3-0 to the Central Coast before rounding out the pre-season toppling the Phoenix with a 1-0 win. With all of those games bar the Wolves clash being behind closed doors all we as fans can go off of was the highlights of the fixtures and from what I saw the team looked hungry and really solid with the passing game. 

One thing that does have me worried is how we can cover for the loss of Ryan McGowan who was one of the rocks in defence along with Wilko. Looking back at the last 2 seasons with McGowan and Wilko when named together we knew heading into the stadiums (and watching on tv during the lockdowns) that we had one hand in the 3 points. For this season looking at what our predicted round 1 line up will be it seems to be that our first choice to partner Wilko is going to be new signing James Donachie. 

Yes Donachie has been involved with successful sides in the past when he was with the Brisbane Roar and Melbourne Victory. My biggest question is weather or not he will be at his best or have the little brain fades that have proved to be costly in the last few seasons. 

Image take from A-League Facebook page

Obviously the team has made other major signings in the way of Elvis Kamsoba, Connor O’Toole and Max Burgess who aren’t even being predicted to be in the starting line up for this weekend’s Sydney Derby. To go along with these new signings missing out on the starting spots you also have players like Anthony Caceres and Trent Buhagiar who will have to fight to come off the bench as substitutes unless there are injuries or suspensions in the team or possibly will have to wait till the ACL to start. 

I am also going to be intrigued with how Bobo and Le Fondre will work together upfront. Yes they did combine well at the end of the last campaign yet both are moving on and can they hold up for the whole season, I guess we’ll have to wait and see. One more player I have concerns over is Andrew Redmayne, yes that is despite him being the keeper of the season last year coming into the new season with a new centre back pairing with a slightly less experienced defender could cause trouble at the back. 

While those are my takes on the players I also want to look at Steve Corica. Even though he is a Sydney legend and has been with the club since day 1 this could potentially be his final season at the club. Now I understand how that can seem unfounded given that he has won 2 toilet seats and a plate as well as making a third Grand Final in a row in the season just gone. 

Steve Corica has been with Sydney FC since the start of the A-League GETTY IMAGES

Despite all that success he has had in his first 3 seasons in charge there has always been the debate of weather he is going to be in the job long term which in terms of modern day football mangers he has been there long term. Do I believe he will see out the season that I am unsure of at this stage but if Sydney don’t have a win in their first 4 games then he very well could be one of if not the first coach to be sacked. 

Corica may very well see out the season should he get the results at the beginning of the season that may give him a reprieve from the sack but should results start to go bad then he may be a goner. At the end of the season though if he can deliver another golden toilet seat then I think we will be seeing him again next season unless an oversea’s team decides to take a punt on him. 

With the new season beginning this weekend I am finding myself feeling nervous and anxious about what is going to happen this time around. Will Sydney be there again? Will this be the year Sydney fall down the table? All I know is we are in for what I feel will be the best and closest season we have ever seen. Hopefully there aren’t any major pandemic disruptions again and the toilet seat comes back home to Moore Park Road. 

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