Last week’s result was disappointing but the match itself also carried a bit of hope.
The second half saw us get back into the game playing good football. We dominated play and we were right in it trailing 1-2. But, as happens in any game, a mistake cost us and we ended-up with an unflattering scoreline of 1-3 against us.
I thought our opponents, Redlands United ,played some lovely football. They looked fluent, they controlled the ball well, their movement on and off-the-ball was excellent and they had pace. It was some of the best football I’ve seen in the NPL and I’m pleased we were able to take the game to them in the second half.
The performances of Ben Stanley, Dale Motti and Hamish Cassady last week are also worthy of mention. They’re all young guys who are making the most of the opportunity to play at NPL level.
What we need now from everyone is consistency across the whole squad for 90 minutes – not just one half or two-thirds of the game, but the full 90. I’ll be looking for this on Sunday when we travel south to meet Sunshine Coast.
Over the past week, Northern Fury has hosted the Inter-City Challenge between youth teams from Townsville, Mackay and Cairns. It’s been a brilliant week.
On the first day, we were undefeated; the second day took its toll; and honours were fairly even on the final day. Overall, our standard of play has improved markedly. It’s plain to see how well our young players are moving the ball, keeping shape, creating space and using one-or-two touch football.
On a final note, there are two big international matches this weekend. Argentina meet Chile in the Copa America Final on Sunday morning; the USA meet Japan in the Women’s World Cup Final on Monday morning.
Considering the season he’s had, Lionel Messi must be really in need of a break, but he continues to mesmerise opposition defences. I’m tipping Argentina in Copa America. The US women will be too strong for Japan, who are tenacious but they have also ridden their luck a little.
Ian Ferguson is Director of Coaching of Northern Fury FC and Head Coach of the NPL team. He has previously coached Perth Glory and the former NQ Fury in the A-League. His playing career spanned 18 years, mostly with Rangers in the Scottish Premier League. He was capped nine times for Scotland.