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PLAY IT SHORT (A-LEAGUE): Only Roary could calm mad Berisha, clique rewriting coaches history, son of Forest star looks the goods

ONLY ROARY COULD CALM DOWN MAD BERISHABrisbane Roar versus Sydney was ... freaking AWESOME!!! The game was pacy, intense and passionate - and Berisha's 'see you in the car park' challenge to Bosschaart was sensational! From doing his best 'Ole Solskjaer' for the Brisbane winner, to transforming into Rocky - the Albanian has to now be one of the great cult heroes in Brisbane sport. And the craziest thing out of it all was none of his teammates could calm the boy down - that was until Roary the Lion approached and put his paw around him! You can't tell me even those 'tsk, tsk' pundits telling us how the A-League is above all that aren't like the rest of us hoping these two meet again in the finals.

STOP WITH THE ELITEST STUFFWhat's wrong with the Aussie soccer media? Why drone on about how there's 'no place' for Saturday's sensation in the A-League. Things kickoff in the Premier League every other week between players on the pitch and in the tunnel. The sport's about passion and playing on the edge. Why do our pundits feel what boils over in the best competition in the world somehow doesn't belong in the A-League? If these blokes want to be a life cop, get off the tele, get out of our living room and go and run for your local council. Stop taking the fun out of the sport.

FACTS GET IN THE WAY OF AGENDA-DRIVEN CLIQUESpeaking of the clique, the rewriting of history stuff that has gone on since Jim Magilton's appointment at Melbourne Victory is becoming ridiculous. Terry Butcher, Steve McMahon and Richard Money have all been slated by the clique in the last week - with the FACTS of each of their reign's being completely ignored. All three, Butcher at Sydney, McMahon at Perth and Money with the Jets, left their clubs as top four teams. Since Sydney, Butcher has been Scotland assistant coach, led Inverness Caley to promotion and saw them beat Celtic to give Rangers the title last season. From his experience in Sweden, Money joined the Jets as the most qualified coach seen in Australia, which is part of the reason why Newcastle United made him their Academy director after he'd taken Walsall up from League Two at first attempt. And of course, Perth was McMahon's last coaching job. Taking the players side, the club was a basket case until that group was cleared out. McMahon is now the main man for ESPN Star and has fronted Asian consortiums interested in buying Premier League clubs. How many A-League clubs could do with the connections McMahon has now?Then there's another in Pierre Littbarski, who has since worked all over the world since leaving Sydney - including last season in the Bundesliga at Wolfsburg.The sad thing is that every time the clique belittle the foreign coaches who gambled and came to work here, they just do their own favourites a disservice. If they actually highlighted what the likes of Butcher and Littbarski had achieved since leaving the A-League, it would enhance the value placed on coaching jobs here and prove it wasn't a foreigner's graveyard.

WERE WE WRONG ABOUT FABIO?Fabio was excellent on Friday. This column has slaughtered the Brazilian since the start of the season, but he was excellent against Adelaide - both going forward and defensively. Okay, it wasn't the perfect performance, his positioning still wasn't top drawer at times and there was one lazy clearance late on which left fans with their heart in their mouths. But the boy showed on the night why Muscat and Durakovic backed him in preseason. There's a lot there for Magilton to work with.

DAVIDSON JR MADE OF RIGHT STUFFJason Davidson has just signed for Heracles Almelo.The boy is making the right noises - talking about learning Dutch immediately so to help him settle. He didn't get a contract at Borussia Monchengladbach, but ironically won a deal with Heracles after playing out of his skin in a friendly last week against his old club. The son of Alan Davidson, of Nottingham Forest and Pahang fame, Jason showed the necessary bottle when accepting a loan move from Paços de Ferreira to little Sporting Covilha last season. There's other Aussie kids in the same situation who have thrown a wobbler and run back home. It's early doors, but Jason is showing he's made of tougher stuff.

Chris Beattie
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Chris Beattie

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