“Iceberg right ahead” the Melbourne City supporter screams, this is met with dozens of screams from other fans; some wearing Heart shirts, some City shirts and the occasional lost soul wearing a Manchester City shirt.
I look towards the helm and all I can see is an unmanned area, a wheel shaking side to side without direction from at least one individual. The SS Melbourne City FC is officially out of control and heading towards the iceberg marked mediocrity in regards to the 2016/17 A-League season.
Danger is imminent and we are without leadership.
It was imperative Bruno Fornaroli returned to Australia after the season last year and after winning the golden boot he was more than deserving of a marquee contract. The mistake was handing him the captains arm band. Great players don’t always make great captains and this is very apparent in this situation. Fornaroli is a quality player but he doesn’t display the typical attributes that represent a great captain. This season he has been felt out a little by opposition defences but has still provided some quality moments. The captains arm band is clearly hampering Fornaroli’s performances and the added burden of leadership doesn’t sit well with the Uruguayan. In retrospect the club should’ve stripped Bruno of the captaincy after his FFA Cup speech; it would’ve been the perfect chance to rewrite a clearly wrong decision.
Michael Valkanis might be a very good assistant coach but from what we’ve seen in his first month in charge he hasn’t put his stamp on this team. If anything we have gone backwards under his guidance. Rolling out phrases such as “dominating games” and “playing on our terms” gives the impression that Valkanis is very much the caretaker of this group and he is sitting by his laptop awaiting tactical instructions from those above him. There is no individual touch with this team and the predictable robotic instructions have Valkanis standing on the sidelines effectively with his hands tied behind his back.
This week we will most likely be without Manny Muscat, Bruno Fornaroli, Fernando Brandan, Osama Malik and Tim Cahill whilst Michael Jakobsen is a definite injury concern and Dean Bouzanis has a nervous wait over his vile comments towards Besart Berisha. Whilst very much caught in the heat of the moment there is no room for that type of behaviour in this league or any around the world.
This Saturday night provides the perfect opportunity for Valkanis to prove to the Melbourne City fans he’s not just a “yes” man and play the way he wants to. For me the result this week isn’t as important as the way we go about things without a number of key players. This is the perfect opportunity for a few of our players to take stock of our current situation and show some leadership.
Neil Kilkenny needs to be given the arm band this week and take his chance to show many of his leadership qualities. Sorensen is the obvious choice given his wealth of experience but unless Bouzanis is sanctioned for the remainder of the season his future at City will only be a cameo role.
Everyone involved with Melbourne City needs to get their head out of the cloud (or somewhere else) and realise the current situation at hand. We have nine rounds remaining and maybe finals depending on results but this current run of performances is totally unacceptable.
Maybe we should show the men’s team some footage of the Women’s team from last night to instil some courage and confidence in our squad.
No matter how much you spend on your Ocean liner in the offseason it’s essentially just shiny scrap metal if you don’t put the correct people in charge.Google+