Coach's Corner

Who’s Hot? Who’s Not?

Southern Gazette July 05.2006

By Gord Dunphy

gorddunphy@email.com




Who’s Hot? Who’s Not?

Now that the Challenge Cup 2006 season is well under way, I will now divide a number of players into one of two categories – ‘Who’s Hot’ or ‘Who’s Not’!

The ‘Who’s Hot’ players are those players who are off to a great start this season. While players listed in the ‘Who’s Not’ category are players at this point in the season are off to a very slow start.

Who’s Hot?

Justin Pickford – Mount Pearl/That Pro Look/Molson: Justin, at this point, may be very well, a leading candidate for the league’s ‘Rookie of the Year’ honours. He leads Mount Pearl in goal scoring. He has a great shot and uses his speed to keep his opponents back on their heels. He is definitely a scoring threat!

Who’s Not?

Johnny Acreman – Mount Pearl/That Pro Look/Molson: At one point in his career, I felt Johnny Acreman would certainly be one of the mainstays of the Mount Pearl team for years to come. However, this season, Acreman seems to be caught in a game of numbers with Mount Pearl. So far this season, Acreman is regularly assigned to bench duty, and when given the opportunity to play, he appears frustrated.

Who’s Hot?

Paul Slaney – St. Lawrence Laurentians: Early showings indicate the Laurentians’ mid-fielder Paul Slaney may be at the peak of his career. Paul has great speed, good vision and the potential to be a long time All-Star. Paul’s shot has placed him in the position to contend with the Laurentians’ forwards for the scoring title.

Who’s Not?

Chris Caines – St. Lawrence Laurentians: Chris Caines is definitely one of my favourite players that I’ve ever coached. However, this season Caines is struggling. His timing is off, his fitness is questionable and his once dynamite shot is now non-existent. It appears in 2006, Chris can no longer devote himself to soccer and at this point in the season, he’s definitely struggling.

Who’s Hot?

John Hawco – St. John’s Holy Cross: Again in 2006, John Hawco, or should I say, ‘Hawkeye’, has great speed, good vision, a super shot and is a pleasure to watch. What’s better still is there is never any controversy surrounding him. He is just one of those players who loves to play the game.

Who’s Not?

Jay Babstock – St. John’s Holy Cross: To date, injuries, suspensions and a lack of playing time, has caused Jay Babstock to miss a considerable amount of playing time. To this point, Babstock has not led the Holy Cross team to the same effect as he did in 2005.

Who’s Hot?

Colin Power – Marystown United Mariners: This season Colin Power is the leader of the Marystown squad. His blinding speed makes his defensive ability very sound, and Power’s versatility in moving from wing back to center back makes him, at this point in the season, Marystown’s MVP.

Who’s Not?

Darrell Stewart – Marystown United Mariners: Darrell Stewart appears to have lost focus. He’s no longer, in 2006, the dominant mid-fielder or the scoring threat he once was. He seems to be going through the motions this year.

Who’s Hot?

Chris Roche – St. John’s Fieldians: After years of showing little interest, Chris Roche has finally arrived this season. Thus far, he is Feildians’ best player. He is showing a lot more concern in wanting to play in 2006, and his efforts are not going unnoticed. He’s doing a great job in mid-field and he is also contributing on the attack.

Who’s Not?

Chad Moore – St. John’s Fieldians: Somehow Chad Moore doesn’t seem to be the player he was last season. He is struggling offensively and looks to be lacking in physical fitness. At times he seems to be totally lost on the field.

Who’s Hot?

Jeremy Brenton – Burin Eagles: This kid has a great future. He has an excellent work ethic, super speed and his three goals proves he knows where the net is.

Who’s Not?

Burin’s defence on June 24th – Saturday, June 24, when Burin played host to Mount Pearl, the Eagles’ defence became totally ineffective in the second half. At the 63 minute mark, and for the next 21 minutes, Burin sat back and became spectators, watching Mount Pearl’s young striker Chris White score six goals. This was simply a terrible display off defence.

Dunphy’s Details: While the 2006 World Cup has been great so far, the amount of diving and faked injuries is basically destroying the game. Maybe its time for FIFA to look at issuing red cards for these callous acts, rather than a mere yellow.