This article originally appeared here.
Ducks and fans seem to be the hot topic of the day. Funnily enough, I was actually thinking of penning an article on ducks and fans, too. Ducks float around in the water, waddling around pointlessly and splashing water for no good reason. Fans on the other hand, cool down things or if they’re the human variety, they wave their hands around and sing, chant and dance around until they can’t do it anymore. They do this every week, non-stop, without fail.
If you haven’t figured it out yet, Franky boy, I read article. Quite frankly, I wasn’t impressed by it in the slightest. You have taken another shot at the fans, the very ones who turn up week in and week out, only to deliver to them a team which is inept of good football.
You made some big statements last year if I remember correctly. ‘Give me an off-season with proper preparation.’ ‘The squad has been ravaged by injuries because of others.’ You got a two year deal, even after failing to qualify for the Top 6. The thing is Frank, most of us really didn’t want you in the first place. That might be harsh to hear but you were never the man to take us forward.
You now talk about the mistruths of injuries. When you were hired as a caretaker coach, you blamed the previous staff for the lack of fitness and injuries prevalent throughout the squad. So here we are, about one year on from your original appointment, and the squad is still struggling with injuries. Granted, there are 2 players off the top of my head where you and your staff cannot be blamed for injuries. The rest of them, though? They squarely sit on your shoulders. You have your own people as part of the staff. So how come we’re still not fit?
I’ve been extremely vocal about the lack of vision and experience when it comes to recruiting players. I’m not going to hide from that. I’m not even going to hide from the fact that I have abused my own players. But you know why I do that, Frank? I do it because of what I see on the field. It’s quite clear that some of the players on our books wouldn’t be on the books at other A-League clubs. Then, there are players living on past reputation.
Where are our kids, Frank? Surely we have kids better than our first team players, players which you went ahead and re-signed.
I’m not exactly faceless either. I am at the SFS every single week. I have been there in my seat for many seasons. I sit in the seat in which I pay $480 a season for, give or take. I sit and watch in hope that Sydney FC will wake up and play the football that I expect, that the fans expect. Like suckers for punishment we all return, with voices prepared to sing and chant our lungs out for Sydney FC.
The thing is, Frank, is that for the last few years we’ve been mediocre. There’s an argument that we’ve been mediocre throughout our existence. Since winning The Double in 2010, we’ve been shit. There’s no other way to say it.
And while I’m quite happy to voice my frustration at you, players and the club, I realise that not everything is your fault. We have been mismanaged from the top down, all the way to squad. Not just last season but pretty much for our entire existence.
You promised me some new, shiny, sparkly, football Frank. You had a long off-season in which you toured Japan and Italy and came back with promising signs, only to piss it all away for the rest of the off-season. That’s carried on into the season.
How do I know this? Because I don’t see any football that we play that is remotely any good. Your nephew handed us a win in round 1 and then we’ve never looked like winning since. I couldn’t even describe what kind of football we play.
What I do know is that I have a coach who is scrapping for points in round 4 already. To me, that’s talk of a dead man walking. I have a coach who would rather win ugly, rather than instil a culture or philosophy for future coaches to work with.
But let me remind of one thing Frank. We are the fans who pour money into the club every season. We pay for tickets, get ripped off with food and drink prices at the SFS and pay extortionist amounts for much of the merchandise we wear to each and every game. Hell, some of the fans even donate money on top of all that for tifo and card displays. Don’t you ever forget that.
Like I said, we know it’s not all your fault. But we’re a year into the Frank Farina era and nothing’s changed.
I’ll be there on Saturday night in my usual seat, hoping that we beat those Melbourne losers. Hoping.
Prove to me that you can deliver an entertaining team that can win, Frank. We’re not a team that should scrap for points. We’re bigger than that.
Don’t forget, without fans football is nothing.