One Day in September (or in February, May etc)

September is a beautiful time to be in Melbourne. Spring is slowly emerging, days are getting longer, the sunshine warmer, bees are buzzing – it’s difficult even to walk around the corner without stumbling over a cliché. To give the nice weather just a little more tingle, for AFL fans September means the final series and the glorious march to that One Day in September. sept Continue reading

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Comeback. I’m sorry :'(

There was a ripple of excitement on Twitter last night when Ivory Coast beat Japan 2-1, meaning 4 out of the first 8 matches at the World Cup finals had been won by a team conceding the first goal. Obviously the excitement touched on maths, and every now and then I try to provide a little helpful maths advice on Twitter. It rarely ends well: 00000 Continue reading

Where’s David Gallop’s suggestion box?

It’s an awkward time to be A-League chief David Gallop. On the one hand, he has to acknowledge Brisbane’s amazing season of dominance, which, by common football practices across most of the world, should already have delivered them a championship. At the same time, he has to talk up this weekend’s A-League grand final, where Brisbane will encounter Western Sydney, and the very real possibility that their work in the first 28 games of the season (like Besart Berisha‘s below) may be undone by bad luck in the last.

berisha

Not everyone likes it. Australian Rules devotees are willing to see grand final favourites who lose – North Melbourne 1998 and Geelong 2008 are two recent examples – as somehow lacking what it really takes to be a winner. Football fans feel differently. Continue reading

Should Roy Hodgson roll the dice and make a goalkeeping switch?

Update: read more on this here.

Yikes. Pretty hard to put a positive statistical spin on any of that.

The prevailing sentiment is that a soccer goalkeeper is rarely noticed, or at least rarely remembered, unless they’ve just something unspeakably awful. That might be reason enough not to get out of bed in the morning, but it might be just as frustrating to the GK that the average fan – and maybe even the above average fan, or worse still, the coach, or even the GK – doesn’t understand whether a GK has had a good game or not. Continue reading