SYDNEY FC 1 ADELAIDE UNITED 2
MELBOURNE HEART 3 NEWCASTLE JETS 3
WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS 0 MELBOURNE VICTORY 1
PERTH GLORY 1 WELLINGTON PHOENIX 1
CENTRAL COAST MARINERS 2 – BRISBANE ROAR 1
Jurman the Sherman
Matt Jurman is a former Sydney FC defender who joined the Roar two years ago. He was soundly eclipsed on the field by the excellent Bahraini import Mohammed Adnan and ended up sitting on the bench for most of last year. At the end of the season, Adnan decided to return to his home country which meant that Jurman was re-introduced to the starting eleven.
We call Jurman ‘the Sherman’ because his turning speed is about the same as that of a German tank. His speed statistic in FIFA would probably be a 2 out of 10. He is the weird sort of player that has inexplicably ended up in a professional league when he is unfortunately out of his depth. The number of goals that the Roar have conceded this season that have been a direct result of Jurman’s poor marking or a striker getting past him are too many to count. We haven’t been perfect in other parts of the field either but in Jurman the Roar have a gaping hole in defence which other clubs are happily exploiting.
The situation got desperate after a crushing 4-1 defeat to Melbourne Heart (seriously) so coach Rado Vidosic resorted to shifting our excellent wing defender Ivan Franjic to the centre of defence to plug the gap. This seemed to do the job (sort of) with the Roar’s 4-2 victory over Sydney FC. This weekend we traveled to Gosford to play against the Mariners in a fixture that we have never lost in the history of the competition.
The game was deadlocked at 1-1 and was an even contest. However, in the eightieth minute, the Roar substituted defender Jack Hingert and made way for Jurman to come on for the final ten minutes of the game. Two minutes later, he needlessly gave away a free kick on the edge of the penalty area which the Mariners duly converted to win their first ever home fixture against the Roar 2-1. The Roar remain second bottom in the table and have only beaten Melbourne Victory and Sydney FC – two teams with such unbelievably shitty defending that it doesn’t matter what Jurman does.
I think it has finally been recognized that Jurman is at a point of no return and that we need to sign a new defender. Unfortunately, it will probably take until January to do so and it will be incredibly difficult for the Roar to win games in the mean time. I think its never too late to qualify for the finals from their current position (Perth Glory reached the grand final last season after sitting 9th on the table in January) but the race for the Premiere’s Plate is effectively over.
A disappointing start to the season. But barring a total meltdown, the team can only go up from here.