A nice writeup on the Mens comp that starts today.
The studded boots are locked away for a few months whilst the Futsal boots are polished and ready to go, as this weekend heralds the exciting return of the Futsal Premier League.
Some big names have swapped jerseys and this season promises to be one of the most exciting competitions in recent years.
With Australia qualifying for the Futsal World Cup in Thailand in November the excitement is building and with the recent completion of the Hummel F League, Futsal is beginning to make its mark in NSW.
Last season’s Premier League Champions Dural Warriors, go into this season as unbackable favourites.
Under the guidance of Futsalroo Assistant coach Rob Varela the F League Champions go into the competition with 4 Futsalroos in their ranks.
They suffered only one defeat in that competition scoring an incredible 108 goals in their 14 matches.
Prized off season recruit from Maccabi F.C and F-League Golden Boot winner Jarrod Basger scored 30 of those goals and will be looked upon to continue his brilliant goal scoring form.
Basger will also see representative team mates and Futsalroo Captain Tobias Seeto and Greg Giovenale join him in the Warriors line up while youngster Nathan Niski rounds out the representative quartet.
With players such as Bizco, Merrin and the two younger Giovenale brothers in Wade and Rhys also wearing the Warriors’ Red, Dural have a squad un-matched by any other in the competition.
One team that will back their chances to knock of the Warriors off their lofty perch are the Enfield Rovers, who are led by the enigmatic Ernie Bivona.
After winning the Premiership last season Bivona is confident in his troops, saying “The Warriors on paper are one of the favourites, they have four Futsalroos and haven’t stopped training since the end of last season.
“They played F-League so the continuity is there, but names on paper don’t win you games.
“We were the only team that Dural dropped points to in both games last season, they know we can beat them, we know we can beat them,” he said.
And strengthened they have, with Futsalroos Lachlan Wright and young gun Shervin Adeli returning to join mainstays Robert Foti and Jacob Di Mento.
The signings of ex-Futsalroo duo Tuan Cao from Sydney Futsal club and ex-Warrior Issac Waddick will surely add some spice to what will be a fantastic competition.
Sydney City Eagles coach Jamie Amendolia hopes to go the next step this season after a disappointing exit at the semi-final stage last year. To do so he will have to do it without some big names.
Andres Gomez has joined the Inner West Magic while former Futsalroo Ray Miller will be missing because of an ongoing knee injury.
If the Eagles have aspirations of returning to the finals their reliance on influential keeper Peter Spathis and Futsalroo Chris Zeballos has never been higher.
Chris Hanly and Miles Downie are important players, whilst the signing of Melbourne based Andre Caro will strengthen the side. Another player to keep an eye on is Japanese import Takeda Umeda.
Amendolia will need to rely on the clubs strong youth side and youngsters such as Brackenrig, Perre, Musumeci and Vallonio will need to step up.
Campbelltown City Quake, who finished last season in 4th position, will see Simon Keith remain at the helm of the now Windsor based club.
The Quake core of Ardel, Martinez, Symington, Mc Andrew as well as Futsalroo duo O’Brien and Lockhart all return.
While Keith’s influx of youth players will see Bruno Antelmi, Nathan Clissold and Josh Curtain all play influential minutes this season and the signing of Scott Madden will add further experience to the team.
The Inner West Magic’s disappointment of missing the finals for the first time in many years resulted in a heavy off season recruitment drive.
Joining the Magic are Futsalroo duo Aaron Cimitile, who returns after having last season off, whilst Andres Gomez re-joins the club. A third Futsalroo is quite possibly the biggest off season signing of the competition. The influential Daniel Fogarty will don an orange jersey this season.
Futsalroo goalkeeper Roberto Maiorana returns as do the influential Marino Musumeci and Ediz Alpkaya.
Coach Carmine Bortone says, “The boys that have come to the club this season have all been here before and it’s obviously clear that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
“To have three Futsalroos join the squad as well as Robbie in goals gives us a huge boost. The thing that I see helping us the most is when you add those boys with the likes Marino, Kaysey, Painey, Poniris, Dave and Kane we have a squad with huge depth and each and every player can have an impact on the game,” he added.
Boomerangs F.S will be looking to crack the top four this season and will be led by Futsalroo duo Daniel Fulton and captain Angelo Konstantinou.
Fulton is in career best form winning last season’s Premier League Player of the year award as well as this seasons F-League MVP.
Konstantinou isn’t one to stand in the shadows and joined his Boomerangs F.S team mate Fulton on the podium scooping the Golden Glove as the competition’s best goalkeeper.
The Boomerangs will need Callum and Glenn Smith to have big seasons whilst coach Kristian Collins hopes Pat Ross Magee finds the form of yesteryear when he was heavily touted to make the Futsaroo squad.
With ex Futsalroos Trent Flanigan and Robbie Cattanach returning, the Canberra based side could well be the competitions dark horse.
Zvi Ben David will once again control the reigns of the Mascot Vipers.
Ben David prefers to keep his Vipers core of Ekinci, Stamatellis, and Di Salvo brothers Pat and Brad whilst giving his quality youth players all important minutes in the Men’s team.
Kontallis, Radas, Griffin-Coles and Tomelic will play big parts in the team’s quest for glory. One player that Ben David did add was the highly touted Wayne Estevao to strengthen their goal keeping stocks.
Ben David remarked, “I’m not expecting miracles, it’s a learning process for the young boys.”
He speaks highly of Brazilian Osmar De Barros. Ben David said, “Ossie is like a piece of marble he’s playing the best I’ve ever seen him play.”
“If he keeps playing the way he is now and our senior boys are fit, don’t worry, the Vipers will be competitive,” he added.
Finally Phoenix Futsal club, the new kids on the block go into the season with an almost unchanged side to last season. The recruitment of the Dingwall brothers Scott and Chris will add much needed experience to the North Sydney based side and they will certainly be worthy opponents this season.