Every A-League round, we hand out our FTBL awards for the brilliant, bad and bizarre moments each week. In round 13, one player continued to live up to the hype, one team continued to leak goals, whilst another keeps being put in their place by an old foe.
The Germany's Calling For A Reason Award
The Mariners called upon a familiar face on Thursday night to get them out of danger, as they came from behind to beat Adelaide 2-1.
That face was Alou Kuol, who once again made the desired impact as a substitute by lashing home the winner after a Joe Gauci mistake (who also saved two penalties).
The only other player I can think of who throws himself into challenges like Kuol is the Reds Kusini Yengi.
However, Kuol has that poacher's instinct that is very difficult to teach young Australian strikers.
It is one of the reasons German side VfB Stuttgart are currently linked with the 19-year-old.
Fantastic for him and well deserved. Now needs to nail his next move to a team where he has a good chance on making minutes each week and not chase top $$ yet. If he is good enough it will happen. Dutch, Belgium or Danish league a good in between step to build his tactical side.— Rob (@Rob33897334) April 4, 2021
He now has seven goals in fifteen games this term, despite only starting the game on four occasions.
Despite the impressive goals return, I hope he bides his time before going to Europe and plying his trade.
Our young players often see their careers fizzle out prematurely when they go to Europe because they aren't ready for such a jump in quality.
The They Can't Defend Award
Perth Glory might be a pretty decent attacking force, but defensively they are a shambles, and they have been since round one.
Richard Garcia's side is STILL yet to keep a clean sheet in the 2020-21 campaign.
Many critics raved about how impressive they looked going forward at the start of the season, particularly after scoring nine in their opening two games combined.
Let's not forget that in both of those opening games, they also conceded a combined eight, and they have the second-worst defence in the league behind the Victory (obviously).
German import and defender Sebastian Langkamp came into the side for their clash against Macarthur on Friday.
Still, it was the same old story as the Bulls tore Perth apart in the first half.
Not a great start to the day. Perth Glory 2 nil down at half time playing without intensity and giving the ball away constantly. Hope this isn't a premonition for the #afcb game later.— Martin Coombes (@Coomb77) April 2, 2021
The Glory plays Sydney FC next, and if I'm either Bobo or Kosta Barbarouses, I would be chomping at the bit for it.
The Damning Record Award
A few weeks ago, we mentioned that the power was shifting in Melbourne between the Victory and City after the Melbourne Derby drubbing.
The power might be shifting there, but it has already shifted in terms of the Big Blue.
Sydney FC is continuing to stamp their authority as the far more dominant force between them and the Victory.
The latest instalment of one of the league's oldest rivalries was once again one-sided, with Steve Corica's side cursing to the three points again.
The Sky Blues have now won six consecutive Big Blue encounters and 13 of the last 16.
The statistics are just several more alarm bells in an otherwise embarrassing season for the Victory.
100%. Melbourne Victory don’t have some kind of divine right to success just because they think they’re a big club. The league can not only survive but thrive without Melbourne being near the top. You are not above failure in this league Vuck. https://t.co/LcJ5YBl7vQ— Matt Thompson (@MediocreMatt88) April 5, 2021
Two of their closest rivals have beaten them by an aggregate score of 9-0 in just two encounters recently.
They might be better off forfeiting the rest of the season; that's how dire the situation is now.