Who Is Walter Pless?

Walter_Pless

A teacher by profession, but is now in his 38th year as a football writer. Has written for "Soccer Action" (Melbourne), "Australian Soccer Weekly" (Sydney) and "World Soccer" (London), as well as for several Tasmanian newspapers. Currently contributing to "Goal!Weekly" in Melbourne and the Australian magazine "Soccer International". Played for Croatia-Glenorchy, Caledonians, Metro, Rapid and University in Tasmania, as well as in the United States of America. Coached University, Metro and Croatia-Glenorchy.

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One of the things that makes football such a wonderful game is its sheer unpredictability.


Three of the four Division One games this week are, however, very predictable.


Metro will beat Southern FC away at Sherburd on Saturday at 2.30pm, while University will also down DOSA away at the Showgrounds the same afternoon.


On Sunday, Beachside will win against the FFT Under-15s at Sandown Park.


The only unpredictable game is the clash between Nelson Eastern Suburbs and Hobart United at North Warrane on Sunday.


I could be wrong about the above outcomes - because of football’s very unpredictability - but I don’t think I will be on this occasion.


Metro are third on the ladder and Southern FC sixth, but Metro are the highest scoring team in the competition, while Southern FC’s defence ranks third in the ‘most goals conceded’ department.


Jason Dawes, the Metro striker who currently leads the league’s individual goalscoring charts, should have a field day.


This is no disrespect to Southern FC, who, I am sure, will give it their all, but they will just be outclassed by a side that is in with a chance of promotion.


University are not the force they once were, and their relegation from the Premier League has devalued their currency even more.


But, they still have the players to do the trick against bottom-side DOSA and it should be one-way traffic at the Showgrounds. It will all be on-coming traffic for DOSA.


Hope springs eternal, however, and rightly so. DOSA’s coach, Pedro Ramirez, retains the faith.


“After last week’s poor performance, I hope the team will be in much better shape,” Ramirez said.


“We have been training well with good numbers, but we’re still missing seven or eight senior players because of injury or unavailability.


“Our aim will be to retain possession, which will be a challenge against Uni, who are an experienced team.


“We do have talented players like Adam Woodward, David MacGuinness, Gustavo Vu and Tim Chadwin, but lack of experience is a factor in our structure.”


Beachside will have Bernhard Klasen back for the game against the FFT youngsters.


“Bernhard was a late withdrawal last week due to an ankle injury, so he will come straight into the squad,” said Beachside player-coach, Nathan Robinson.


“I will see how the players train before making any changes. We are looking forward to playing only our second home game of the year and following up from last week’s good performance.


“Jamon Pennicott, who signed from Zebras late last week and scored on his debut, will make his first home appearance.


“We expect the Under-15s to be similar to the TIS, whom we played in the Summer Cup, so it will be a good contest.”


Second-placed Nelson Eastern Suburbs versus fourth-ranked Hobart United is the match-of-the-round and could go either way.


United will still be without the suspended Akuel Guot, who is one of their main weapons in attack.


But, Nelson will be missing two key players in defender Craig Stockdale and striker Tom Gordon. The former has a slight hamstring strain, while the latter is unavailable.


Under-19 players Ryan Mills and Rhys Endall will come into the starting line-up and should play in attack.


Nick Roberts, Troy Hoppitt and Alex Priest will be the substitutes on the bench.


“We had a comfortable win over Hobart a few weeks ago in the State-wide Cup, but we are expecting a tougher game this time around, particularly given that Hobart took a heavy loss last week versus Beachside and will be desperate not to drop another match,” said Nelson coach, Michael Roach.


“It’s a less experienced line-up for us with Tom Gordon and Craig Stockdale out, but I think we still go into this match as favourites, given Hobart are missing Akuel Guot and we are unbeaten at this point in the regular season.


“Still, we are under no illusions about needing to play well to get a result and we need to start taking a higher percentage of the chances we are creating in front of goal.


“It’s a big month for us coming up, with matches against Beachside, Eagles in the Cup, and then Uni gain as we start the second round and, if we can’t get a good result each week, we’ll drop down the ladder quickly because it’s a very tight league between teams one to five on the ladder at present.”