Monday, 7 January 2008

A speck of blue in a sea of orange

Moments before kickoff
One should never allow an opposition supporter choose wear you sit at an away game. Last Saturday night was my second away trip to Brisbane to see the Victory take on the Queensland Roar at Suncorp Stadium. After days of rain, which I enjoyed on Stradbroke Island, Brisbane was at its balmy best for the match. I have a few friends up north who support the Roar and attend these away games with these people. Therefore I was always going to be sitting amongst opposition supporters. However, this time I was deep in enemy territory sitting in the Northern Stand barely fifty metres from "The Den". As I made my way to our seats I was subjected to many a good natured jibe from the Roar fans.

The first half was a fairly tense affair and a pretty ordinary performance from the Victory as the Roar basically camped in our half of the pitch. I thought it was going to be a long night as the team barely created any chances and were being dominated in the midfield. There was a lot of wasted possession and long balls that went to nobody. Luckily for us, Queensland failed to take advantage of their dominance and the score remained 0-0 at half time.

With the second half came a change of mood as twice I leapt to my feet scarf raised amongst the sea of orange as we went two goals to the good. On both occasions I was on the receiving end of some projectiles, namely empty beer cups and coke bottle or two. Luckily none were full and most missed their target and no harm was done. My girlfriend, Caroline, who also joined in the celebrations, didn't cop anything as she wasn't wearing Victory colours. For the next 25 minutes I sat nervously as the Roar went on the attack. The crowd of just over 21,000, a season high, roared into life as Marcinho pulled one back for the Roar and also had very good claims for a penalty as Muscat appeared to handled in the box. For once this season the luck and the call went out our way and the claims were waved away. The sea of orange was livid and vented their frustrations on referee, Matthew Breeze. For the second year running I managed to walk out of Suncorp Stadium with a smile on my face.

Our finals hopes are still alive, although barely as a win or probably even a point to Newcastle in either of the final two rounds will see the official end of our chances and those of fellow 2007 grand finalists, Adelaide. Standout players for me on the night were Theoklitos, Vargas, Thompson and Hernandez with honourable mentions going to Allsopp, Ryall and Muscat. Its good to see Allsopp gaining confidence in front of goal, although to be honest its a little late in the season. Hopefully it continues through to our ACL campaign. I would like to see Hernandez and Ward both start the next game to see how they work together and unfortunately for Caceres that probably means a spell on the bench.

Next is our final home game for the season, barring an unlikely finals appearance, against Wellington. Heres hoping our winning streak continues and the guys below have some more to cheer about.
Melbourne Victory supporters
The bottom photo appears courtesy of smurfie_77 and also appears in the Victory In Melbourne Flickr Group.


Blogger john said...

I didn't see you mate. I did ask the guy next to me, also in a Victory shirt with his girlfriend, if he was you. But he wasn't.

17 January 2008 at 21:04  

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