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A-League Press Rewind - Round Six: Berisha back firing for Victory; Merrick turning Jets into contenders; Channel Ten's poor coverage;

Just in case you missed it, here is all the entertaining stuff from the A-League Round Six inTribalfootball's Press Rewind.


The Good

Football is a game of passion, and has barely been a win more passionate in the A-League than Central Coast's 2-0 triumph over Sydney FC.

Both sides have seen vastly different levels of success in recent years, with Sydney being the far more accomplished team. So much has been the gulf in quality between the two sides, that the Mariners have not notched a win against their Sky Blue rivals since March of 2014. Sydney have put 27 goals past Central Coast since their past loss to them.

The victory is made even sweeter by the complete nature of their performance, keeping a clean sheet against a superbly talented Sydney attack.

The Sky Blues were left to pick their wounds, rue miss chances, and wonder what went so wrong, but for the Central Coast Mariners, it was party time. Their head coach, Paul Okon, was elated on the sidelines, cheering loudly for his victorious side before taking his men down the races and leading a stirring rendition of Darryl Braithwaite's 'The Horses'. Don't see that in the Premier League, do you?

Brodie Cowburn



The Bad

Saturday night's clash between Melbourne Victory and Brisbane Roar was a chance for both clubs to shine, after having winless starts to season, yet no club was able to redeem themselves. The focus now turns to the two coaches, John Aloisi and Kevin Muscat for answers.

Aloisi, who was appointed head coach in May 2015, has led his side to three draws and three losses so far this season, with a dismal three points to show from six rounds. Brisbane Roar are a proud club, with two premierships and three championships in their history, and their 7,379 fans deserve better. The pressure mounts on Aloisi for Brisbane's next clash against 2nd placed Melbourne City, to prove his side can be contenders for more than just the wooden spoon this season.

Appointed in October 2013, Muscat has had a positive reign over Melbourne Victory, leading them to both a premiership and a championship; as well as a FFA cup; to add to their previous two premierships and championships. Melbourne Victory is the biggest club in the A-League boasting nearly 25,000 members, and to be six rounds in and without a win is disgraceful. Melbourne Victory has tough run of games now, with three away games in a row, but Muscat must turn Victory's season around in these upcoming games, before he finds his season cut short.

Mikaela Pratt



The Ugly

This time around, it's not related to the on-field issues that ails our league. According to A-League : News & Match Updates Facebook page, they've shown us over the last few weeks that our TV ratings are dwindling at an alarming pace.

We were supposedly set for rip roaring coverage on Ten's incredible network, but it appears the TV deal hasn't done us many favours at all, with ads being played during the 90 minutes of football it's hardly coverage that entices fans.

The TV deal just shows exactly what shape our league is in. Pair that with the A-League's lack of advertising campaign for the season, along with the FFA's lack of willingness to expand, our beloved A-League is set up for utter commercial failure this season.

That's going to lead to playing the blame game between governing body and clubs, put us in a circle of the same problems posed every year that don't get addressed, and eventually we'll find our league at the bottom of the Australian summer sports pecking order.

While I love my A-League and will defend it to the death, we're kidding ourselves if we think we're doing our game any favours.

Chris Sermeno



Who's Hot

Easily the hottest segment here on Tribal, we're addressing round by round who or what we think is the hottest element of the league.

This week, I'd like to give a shout out to Newcastle Jets manager, Ernie Merrick. Not only does he feature rugged Scottish qualities some might find attractive, the Scotsman has quietly gone about his business while his Jets have run rampant during the opening weeks and find themselves flying at the top of the competition.

Andrew Nabbout has developed incredibly over the last 2 seasons, while recruitment has also been key to the Jets early form. Dimi Petratos finds himself scoring goals and providing assists, while Roy O'Donovan looks unrivalled at this stage for goal scoring honours. An interesting point is that Newcastle have had less possession than all their opponents, yet remain the only undefeated team in the competition.

You don't need absurd ball possession to be effective in a match, and tactically the Jets are firing. The Jets look like a completely reinvigorated side, and you simply have to give credit where credit is due. Ernie Merrick has done an excellent job so far and I'm keen to see how they continue this form.

Brodie Cowburn



Who's Not

There's not much to say about the Melbourne Victory gaffer that hasn't already been said, but it must be stated again, Muscat is seriously facing the heat.

Having spent so much team on top of tables and competing in Grand Finals, Melbourne Victory fans have become accustomed to success. When that success is so far off, they can get a touch inpatient.

Two years ago Muscat was a hero, leading Victory to a long awaited third Grand Final win, and sitting on top of the A-League world. Now, he has yet to notch a win within the first six games of the season, and sits a point above bottom of the table. It's a fickle thing, football.

There are some positives however, their performance against the Roar was possibly their best of the season, and they were very unlucky to lose after taking the lead late. Their fortunes must change eventually, and up against a fragile Perth Glory coming off a Wellington thrashing, it might just be Victory's time to get things right.

Chris Sermeno



Goal of the Week

Besart Berisha was back with a bang this week, after two weeks out due to suspension, with a stunning strike that gave Melbourne Victory the lead late in the game, which they would go on to lose after Brett Holman's strike cancelled it out.

Christian Theoharous became a super sub for Melbourne Victory, when he was substituted on in the 77th minute, and produced the cross that led to the goal less than two minutes later.

Theoharous' cross was scrambled out of the box to Leroy George who, for his 3rd assist of the season, passed the ball in to Berisha. Berisha then produced a first-time volley as he flicked the ball with his right foot into the top left-hand corner of the goal, and beyond Jamie Young's reach.

This is Berisha's second goal for the season, after his header in round 3 against Adelaide United.

Mikaela Pratt

About the author

Freddie Taylor

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