Australian FourFourTwo April 2018

FourFourTwo is Australia’s only soccer magazine! If you live, sleep and breathe football you’ve come to the right place… With access, insight and passion, we take you deep inside the game delivering world class, entertaining content on the English Premier League, the world’s best players, top European club sides and leagues, the Socceroos and the A-League.

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in this issue

2 min
straight from the stands

As another A-League season draws to a close, despite Sydney’s runaway win and a Lazarus-like revival of football fortunes (and crowds) in Newcastle, many would say this season has been a flop with freefalling metrics across the league. But regardless of what some might try to persuade us, football in Australia is not just the A-League... With the promotion-relegation row rumbling on – and the ongoing interest in the FFA Cup (and FFA reform) – there feels like there is a much keener awareness of lower league football in Australia than at any other time in the last decade or more. With the A-League feeling stale, many fans are turning their attention back to the local teams playing at local venues with local players for local fans. But on the bigger stage,…

1 min
unleash the dogs of war

There’s no fixture in world football with as much loathing as Bucharest’s Eternal Derby between Dinamo and Steaua. The February 18 edition was no different, the home side’s fans unfurling a series of banners depicting the Red Dogs’ nickname, badge and the Grim Reaper to ensure Steaua would face an intimidating atmosphere. For 83 minutes, it worked as Dinamo led 2-0, but Filipe Teixeira’s injury-time equaliser – after Dennis Man had pulled one back – earned Steaua a point. Their bark must be worse than their bite.…

19 min
one-on-one rafael van der vaart

“I HAD A LEFT FOOT AND VISION LIKE NO ONE ELSE, BUT I WASN’T THE QUICKEST. IF I’D BEEN FASTER, I MAY HAVE WON THE BALLON D’OR” CLUBS 2000-05 Ajax 2005-08 Hamburg 2008-10 Real Madrid 2010-12 Tottenham 2012-15 Hamburg 2015-16 Real Betis 2016- Midtjylland COUNTRY 2001-13 Netherlands He is now a 35-year-old veteran of big-money moves, Champions League campaigns and World Cup finals, but Rafael van der Vaart could still give the young bucks in this issue of FFT some sage advice on coping with the strain of being a highly-rated youth. In 2003 he was the first ever Golden Boy, an award given by European sports journalists, and the field was especially competitive. “If I remember correctly, Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo came second and third that year,” Van der Vaart tells us, with a cheeky smirk. Even as a senior pro,…

6 min
around the world in 12 stories

1 GOODNESS GRACIOUS, MEE England Burnley There have been lots of iconic movie posters in the past: Jaws, Pulp Fiction, A Clockwork Orange, Saving Bernardo Silva. Hang on, Saving Bernardo Silva? When Ben Mee rugby-tackled Silva during Burnley’s clash with Man City, he was pictured virtually carrying his opponent over his shoulder, as if the ex-Monaco ace had been wounded in battle. Burnley mocked it up into their own version of the Saving Private Ryan poster, with boss Sean Dyche peeking at the back. Next: Jack Cork cycles to the moon mid-match to recreate ET. 2 CHEVRON BONANZA Nigeria Lagos Nigeria have launched their snazzy new kit range ahead of the World Cup – we haven’t seen so much zig and zag since the days of The Big Breakfast. The home jersey features chevrons – with black-and-white…

2 min
games that changed my life jaap stam

“WHEN SOMEONE MENTIONS A CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL, I’LL THINK OF 2005 BEFORE ’99. THE PAIN STAYS WITH YOU LONGER” Netherlands 0-1 Germany April 24, 1996 Friendly “When I received my first call from the national coach, Guus Hiddink, I thought it was a friend playing a joke, but it was a proud moment. I was a sub and spent the second half wondering if I was going to play. With 10 minutes left I came on to replace John Veldman – I was full of nerves but did well. We lost, but at least Germany didn’t score while I was on!” Man United 2-1 B Munich May 26, 1999 Champions League final “I couldn’t have wished for a better first season in England, winning the Premier League, the FA Cup and then the climax to it…

1 min
one question quiz who’s the goalkeeper?

HE JUST HAD TO TAKE IT TOO FAR A Norwegian Liverpool fan has called his new baby girl ‘YNWA’ after anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone. It’s pronounced ‘Unn-wah’, apparently... Answers 1) Gianluigi Buffon; 2) Jose Luis Chilavert; 3) Petr Cech; 4) Neville Southall; 5) Manuel Neuer; 6) Jorge Campos; 7) David Seaman; 8) Karen Bardsley; 9) David de Gea; 10) Fabien Barthez; 11) Gabor Kiraly; 12) Steve Ogrizovic; 13) Tim Howard; 14) Bruce Grobbelaar; 15) Harald ‘Toni’ Schumacher; 16) Rene Higuita; 17) Iker Casillas; 18) Kasper Schmeichel; 19) Peter Schmeichel; 20) Jens Martin Knudsen…