Saturday, 24 September 2016

Failing Football Victoria

The end of the local football season has sadly seen Football Federation Victoria's incompetence rise to the fore yet again.

It began with the social media coverage of the annual Gold Medal Night. For some reason, the tweets announcing the winners were 15-20 minutes behind the actual announcements and presentations made on the night. It was another case of club volunteers putting the FFV professionals to shame.

For some inexplicable reason, the winners were announced with pictorial tweets which did not include their names (or that of their club) in either the tweet or the pictures within:

Even if you happen to know every player in the NPLV, NPL2 and NPLVW by sight, who would you say won the NPLW Player's Player of the Year Award?
There are two players in the picture, was it a tie? Or is the winner the player on the left, or is it the one on the right? Why the need to be so cryptic? Does someone really need to be told that the major part of the announcements was to actually name the winners?

A recurring theme on this blog has been the lack of due respect the governing bodies of the game have shown even when they try and honour people. A look through the #GMN16tag on Twitter will see no mention of the Hall of Fame inductees from the official accounts on the night. Thankfully there were those willing to congratulate the great Jimmy Armstrong on his honour:



Sadly the other two inductees on the night were neglected. Two weeks after the event there has yet to be an update to the Hall of Fame page on the FFV website. Is that good enough?

It took almost a full two weeks for the FFV to publish the final vote tallies for the Gold Medals. It was just the final result, not a match by match listing of the votes. Given there are people claiming players listed as ineligible due to suspension actually weren't, does the FFV have something to hide in opting not to publish the votes? Once again, is this good enough? A club can hand out a list of votes for their Best and Fairest at a Presentation Night, why can't the FFV?

More damaging was the shambolic organisation of the NPLV Grand Final at Lakeside Stadium. Huge lines for entry, with not enough ticket booths open. People still unable to get in even as the game approached half-time. Those that managed to get in forced into overfilling the only part of the ground open to them, with the stand on the opposite side to the main grandstand and both ends behind the goals closed.

Half an hour into the game those waiting outside were apparently given free entry, but it wasn't until after half-time that people were able to spread out beyond the packed stand. Embarrassing for the league's showpiece day, and damaging in terms of the bad taste these kinds of things leave in people's mouths. I really feel for anyone who convinced someone who may have been reluctant to go to the game to attend only to be greeted by such chaos. The FFV is supposed to grow the game, I'm not sure how discouraging spectators works in with that ideal.

The weekend after the Grand Final saw various State League Finals, Semi-Finals and Play-Offs, as well at the NPLV Promotion-Relegation Play-Off between North Geelong and Richmond. Is there any chance these games could have been afforded some promotion via articles on the FFV website or the NPLV website? It was only via searching through the menus of the results/fixtures section of the FFV website that I discovered the State League Division Two Grand Final was part of a double header with the NPLV Promotion-Relegation Play-Off at Jack Edwards Reserve, Oakleigh.

Speaking to people at the Grand Final between Altona Magic and Mornington, it was apparent many did not know there was another game afterwards (albeit with a one hour gap allowed for extra-time and possible penalties). Similarly those attending the second game did not know there was an earlier one. The FFV may have mastered relegation, but they have no idea about promotion.

Are crowds something of an inconvenience for the FFV? They certainly were for the "hosts" of the games at Oakleigh. Shortly after the arrival of busloads of North Geelong supporters, the clubrooms were closed for a private function and no food was available for purchase.

Let's paint the picture: It's 6.30 p.m. People have been on a bus or driving in a car for over an hour. They arrive at the game and are told they can't have any food. Should they then miss what is the biggest game of their season to satisfy their hunger, or should they suffer?



Is it good enough?

Monday, 29 August 2016

Great Links

Since coming across the amazing Soccer Nostalgia blog, I've been searching for other sites which may contain more historical magazines, programmes or yearbooks. Sadly, most are foreign and not of much assistance in further researching Australian football history. Still, they are a brilliant read/view nonetheless.

For mine, the true gold in Soccer Nostalgia are the Full Magazines and Match Programmes blogs. Well worth seeking out via the menus.

Here's a quick sample:



Some of the pictures in the 1960's French magazines (like Miroir du Football, and Football Magazine) are truly exceptional.

Along the lines of what Paul Mavroudis and South of the Border have done, but going back a lot further in time, is the Northern Ireland's Footballing Greats blog. It has some real vintage annuals, guides and yearbooks that can be downloaded from here.

It would be great if our governing bodies could supply us with the means to do similar, but sadly it appears any such documents going back that far have been lost in the mists of time.

Miles McClagan's flickr album is another amazing treasure trove of programmes and magazines. It's the kind of site you can get lost for days in.

Football Programme Covers is another brilliant flickr collection. 

There are several club-based sites with programme cover collections, including Tottenham Hotspur, Wrexham, Leeds United and West Ham United

Feel free to provide similar links in the comments section below.

Friday, 5 August 2016

Soccer Action is Here!

Or more precisely, here.

Soccer Action Volume 1 Number 2 - February 11, 1976.

Work has begun to put my entire Soccer Action collection online. It will not be a quick process, but at least one issue will be added each week. I've been inspired by the amazing Soccer Nostalgia blog and a recent interaction with the great Damian Smith.

The reason it will be a slow and steady process is quite simple, it is boring and time consuming. To get the papers down to a size that will work with my scanner, I go to Officeworks and use their copiers to reduce from A3 to A4. I then scan them into PDF's at home, before uploading to Google Drive. For items that I borrow from others and can copy into my collection, this process is more exciting. For the items I've had in my possession for years and gone through many times over, it is not exciting at all.

So we begin with the second issue, plus the four editions I already had in the History Documents section. I do not have the first edition, which contained a hot take piece by Billy Vojtek on ethnic names which set the agenda for debates which continue to rage. This second issue contains a response to that column by Fred Habbe.

Also inside are columns by Tom Anderson, Tony Boggi, Brian Green, Billy Vojtek, Peter McKenna (the VFL player) and Rale Rasic. As well as the unique musings of Knut Werner, which deserve a new audience. Rasic writes about future AFL Hall of Fame member Tony Charlton, a great broadcaster.

Early issues cover the formation of the NSL and all the political machinations that entailed. I will add new issues in chronological order, but should I feel like doing more than one a week, the second may be from later editions.

Read, save, share and enjoy.


Monday, 1 August 2016

An Update on the Biographies

Several large updates have been made recently in the Biographies section of the blog. The aim is to provide some sort of information on anyone every awarded Life Membership of the State's various governing bodies over the years, be it the Victorian Amateur British Football Association, the Victorian Amateur Soccer Football Association or the Victorian Soccer Federation/Football Federation Victoria.

For the first two bodies, details of Life Membership will always remain sketchy. In the VSF/FFV era living Life Members are often listed in the Yearbooks/Annual Reports yet it is possible some may have slipped through the cracks.

The current state of play shows one known VABFA Life Member (Harry Dockerty). I have information on 3 of the 8 known VASFA Life Members. In the VSF/FFV era there is information on 75 of the 121 known Life Members. I know a little about some of those without information attached to their names, but am endeavouring to find more substantial profiles for them.

If anyone can assist, please get in touch at markboric@bigpond.com

The Biographies can be found via a tab at the top of the blog or via clicking here.


Monday, 11 July 2016

Historical Artefact Monday - The Drinks Cabinet

The drinks cabinet at Melbourne Soccer HQ contains two football-themed glasses, both adorned with quality, old school emblems.

The following glass was made for the 50th Anniversary celebrations for Moorabbin City in 1999, the club having folded at the end of the previous season. For the history booklet from the same event, click here.


The glass featured the 1970's-1980's club logo on one side, with a 1950's logo on the other.


The classic 1950's "The Dominoes" logo, with 1949 foundation date.

The other anniversary themed drinking glass in my collection is a shot glass commemorating 60 years of Melbourne Croatia/Knights from 2013.


                                             (Click on images to enlarge)

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

No Further Correspondence Shall Be Entered Into

Here's a collection of old club and Federation/Association correspondence, some with nice letterheads.















                                                    (Click on images to enlarge)

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Hall of Fame or Hall of Shame?

In looking to add more profiles of VABFA/VSF/FFV Life Members to add to the Biographies page of this blog, I had another look through the Hall of Fame section of the FFA website.

Nothing ever surprises me in terms of neglect of the history of the game in this country. Even still, I was taken aback by the lack of detail afforded to many of the individuals apparently "honoured" by their induction into the Hall of Fame. It is supposed to be an honour, but with so little respect afforded to many inductees the use of the term is questionable.

Let's go back to the inaugural 1999 induction:


There is no picture or profile for any of the first sixteen names listed. It is not like many of them are from early last century either, some are still involved in the game today. The 1974 Socceroos fare best, with recent efforts to make amends for years of shoddy treatment ensuring all their profiles are complete. For many others, the FFA has neglected to properly salute them on their own Hall of Fame page. Surely in the SIXTEEN years since they have been inducted some basic research could have been conducted?

List of inductees not properly honoured:

1999

George Smith (No image, no text)
Cliff Sander (No image, no text)
John Perin (No image, no text)
Frank Parsons (No image, no text)
Jeff Olver (No image, no text)
Gordon Nunn (No image, no text)
Sergio Melta (No image, no text)
Gary Marocchi (No image, no text)
Allan Johns (No image, no text)
Tom Jack (No image, no text)
William "Bill" Henderson (No image, no text)
Jack Evans (No image, no text)
Michael de Bruyckere (No image no text, while he Anglicised his Christian name to "Mike" if we have William "Bill" Henderson it should probably be Sjel "Mike" de Bruyckere)
William Coolahan (No image, no text)
Jim Armstrong (No image, no text)
Ron Adair (No image, no text)
John Nyskohus (No image)
James McNabb (No image)
William Maunder (No image)
Frank Laughran (No image)
Bob Lawrie (No image)
Ron Wright (No image)
Sir William Walkley (No image)
William Thomas (No image)
Ron Smith (No image)
Martin Royal (No image)
Peter Nikolich (No image)
Des Miles (No image)
Graham McMillan (No image)
Frank McIver (No image)
Zoran Matic (No image)
Jack Logan (No image)
Brian Leferve (No image)
Tony Kovac OAM (No image)
Tom Grimson (No image)
Keith Gilmour (No image)
Pam Gilbert (No image)
Harry Croft (No image)
Donald Campbell (No image)
Fred Barlow (No image)
Eric Worthington (No image)
Laurie Schwab (No image)
Julius Re (No image)
Sam Papasavas OAM (No image)
Dieter Klose (No image)
Brian Corrigan (No image)
Ian Brusasco AM (No image)
Giacomo "Jim" Bayutti OA (No image)
Michael Weinstein AM, BEM (No image)
Vic Tuting MBE (No image)
Robert Telfer (No image)
Theo Marmaris MBE (No image)
Arthur Gibbs (No image)
John Walter Fletcher (No image)
Harry Dockerty (No image)
Tony Boskovic (No image)
Connie Selby (No image)
Sir Arthur George AO (No image)

2000

Alex Gibb (No profile)
Kevin O'Neill (No profile)
Chris Bambridge (No image)
Don Sutherland (No image)

2001

Bill Vojtek (No image, no profile)
Cecil Drummond (No image, no profile)
Leo Baumgartner (No profile)
Gary Byrne (No profile)
Robert Dunn (No profile)
Ken Murphy (No profile)
Doug Rennie (No image)

2002

James Wilkinson (No profile)
George Harris (No profile)
Branko Buljevic (No profile, how about start with 1974 World Cup Socceroo)
Siri Kannangara (No image)
Rodney Woods (No image)

2003

Wally Savor (No image, no profile)
Percy Lennard (No image, no profile)
William "Bill" Henderson (Seems to have been inducted a second time, still not good enough to get his image or profile added)
Colin Bennett (No image)
Steve O'Connor (No image)
Roy Crowhurst (No profile)
David Harding (No profile)
Betty Hoar (No image)
Les Murray (No image, it can't be that hard for the face of football media)
Joseph J Honeysett (No image)

2004

Todd Clarke (No profile)
Ian Gray (No profile)
Peter Thorne (No image)
Jane Oakley (No image)

2005

Mike Petersen (No image, can they not get Ange Postecoglu to take a pic on his phone?)
Alec Cameron (No profile)
Craig Johnson (No profile, can they not borrow his book?)
Bruce Morrow (No profile)
Roger Lamb (No image)
Vic Dalgleish (No image)
Phil Murphy (No image)

2006

Peter Sharne (No profile)
Ernie Campbell (No profile)

2007

Steve Blair (No image, and he even has a website with a great collection of Aussie soccer photos)

2008

John De Witt (No image)

2009

Tony Vidmar (No profile, his brother got image and profile with his induction the previous year)


Neglecting those honoured in the past is nothing new, I have already previously covered it regarding the issue of VSF/FFV Life Members. The state of the FFA Hall of Fame on their website is embarrassing.

This is the standard the FFA should aspire to: AFL Hall of Fame

When they can't even offer basic profiles for all Hall of Fame members, one can only laugh at the regular calls from eminent journalists for a National Football Museum. What are the odds they could make a decent fist of that? A shrine to themselves, maybe, a proper historical museum, no chance,.