Five things we learned from A-League Round 3

Forget about further disciplining Perth Glory coach Kenny Lowe for his finger-pointing rant at referee Alan Milliner. FFA should pay him a bonus for the publicity he attracts on behalf of the game. The man is gold.

Kenny Lowe

Perth Glory coach Kenny Lowe animated during his side's draw with Central Coast Mariners Source: Getty Images

1. Cahill not the A-League's only publicity magnet

Lowe is a livewire on the sideline and his post-match media conferences are more entertaining than many matches.

He calls it as he sees it and delivers some great lines. His effort after the 3-2 win over Melbourne City, in which he was banished to the sideline for the second-half, was one of his best.

On Glory goalkeeper Liam Reddy's "workload": "I think the biggest problem Liam had all day was whether his cigar went out."

And in answer to a reporter who had suggested Glory had been "really physical" and asked whether that was "part of the plan": "Sorry, we'll take netball up. Not allowed to be physical? Don't mention that word, please. You can't say that. And they (City) weren't physical last week against Victory?"

"Dear me. Dear, dear, dear me. Oh, let's just sit there like a little cat with our arms and legs in the air and they can tickle our belly and score three and everyone can pump Tim up again. It (City) is the best team in the league. We came here and we competed and we deserved what we got."

2. Goalkeepers under threat

The competition is only three rounds old and already two teams have switched goalkeepers.

Central Coast Mariners dumped Ivan Necevski for Paul Izzo against Brisbane Roar on the weekend. Necevski had played poorly in the 4-0 loss to Sydney FC a week earlier and didn't get a second chance.

And Melbourne City stuck with Dean Bouzanis against Perth despite former Premier League star Thomas Sorensen becoming available again after his one-match suspension.

But don't be surprised if City coach John van't Schip changes the order again for Tuesday night's FFA Cup semi-final against Melbourne Victory.

3. The man Adelaide United miss most

It's Bruce Djite, no question.

They would no doubt love to still have the other stars who left the club after last season and their injured brigade on deck as well, but among those who are either gone altogether or currently hurt the departed Djite is the most important absentee.

He found a rich vein of goal-scoring form during Adelaide's title run last season, but his ability to keep the ball and bring teammates into the play and also pressure opposition defenders when they have the ball is also something United miss badly.

New striker Sergi Guardiola has shown glimpses of potential, but he's a different sort of player to Djite.

4. Not-so-crowded houses

Unfortunately, you can't have huge-drawing derby games every week, and after the Sydney derby boosted the overall crowd total in round 1 and the Melbourne derby did the same in round 2, the competition got its inevitable reality check with the crowd figures for round 3.

The Adelaide-Victory clash drew 14,908 to Coopers Stadium and Western Sydney Wanderers, in their first game at Spotless Stadium, pulled 13,247 against Newcastle Jets.

The other three attendance figures - 8076 for Melbourne City at home to Perth, 7073 for Central Coast at home to Brisbane Roar and 7365 for Wellington Phoenix at home to Sydney FC - were all disappointing.

5. Hooley dooley!

Andrew Hoole still hasn't scored a goal from open play in the A-League, but expect one soon because his cracker of a free kick to give Newcastle a 2-2 draw with Western Sydney will boost his confidence enormously.

Wanderers goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne really shouldn't have been beaten at his near post, but credit to Hoole for backing himself to get the ball around the defensive wall and into the back of the net. He now has two A-League goals - the other from the penalty spot for the Jets two seasons back.

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4 min read
Published 24 October 2016 at 7:03am
By Greg Prichard