Newcastle Jets stars Michael Bridges (left) and Emile Heskey have been rested for the clash with Melbourne Victory. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun

Newcastle Jets aim to bring Harry Kewell back to the A-League after his time with Melbourne Victory last season. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun

السودان يتهم الجنوب بإيواء متمردين - متمردين بالسودان بايواء

اتهم الجيش السوداني الاثنين جنوب السودان يإيواء من وصفهم بـ "المتمردين" من ولاية النيل الأزرق السودانية ومن بينهم جرحى أصيبوا في المعارك الأخيرة.

الجنايات الدولية تحث ليبيا على اعتقال البشير

حثت محكمة الجنايات الدولية الجمعة دولتي تشاد وليبيا على اعتقال الرئيس السوداني عمر البشير إذا قام بزيارتهما خلال عطلة نهاية الأسبوع.

Bayern Munich are runaway leaders in Bundesliga after win over Hoffenheim

Munich's Mario Gomez, right, celebrates his goal during his club's 1-0 victory over Hoffenheim. Picture: AP Source: AP

BAYERN Munich remain 17 points clear in the Bundesliga, after labouring to a 1-0 win at strugglers Hoffenheim.
Bayern claimed their 10th straight victory thanks to Germany striker Mario Gomez's first-half winner.
Although 47 points separate the two teams in the table, Hoffenheim, second from bottom, worked hard to contain the off-form league leaders before succumbing to their 16th league defeat of the season.
They have won now only one of their last 14 games, including two draws and suffered 11 defeats and face a relegation dogfight of a duel next weekend against bottom club Greuther Fuerth.
For Bayern meanwhile it was their 20th league win from 24 games this season. Bayern produced a subdued display, despite knocking holders Borussia Dortmund out of the German Cup last Wednesday, with coach Jupp Heynckes admitting his team were off colour.
"The game was very difficult because of the opponent's league predicament," said Heynckes.
"We had to work hard for the win, it wasn't brilliant or glamorous, but in return for 90 minutes work, we got three points
Borussia Dortmund's Robert Lewandowski (right) scored two in his side's win over Hannover, which keeps them in second place but well behind the leaders. Picture: AP/Frank Augstein)

"We were a bit superficial, we weren't direct enough and not lively enough. It took a while to warm up the engine."
Heynckes made five changes from the team which beat Dortmund with reserve goalkeeper Tom Stark starting for Manuel Neuer and Gomez starting for Mario Mandzukic.
Swiss star Xherdan Shaqiri took Toni Kroos' place in the centre of midfield, Germany's Jerome Boateng started at centre-back for Belgium's Daniel van Buyten.
France star Franck Ribery took his place on the left wing from Arjen Robben, left out of the matchday squad despite scoring Wednesday's winner.
Hoffenheim made a bright start and contained Bayern's attack until the 38th minute.
Midfielder Igor de Camargo's mistimed pass was snapped up by Bayern's Boateng, who fired in a cross for Ribery to head back across goal to Gomez, who rolled his shot past goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes.
Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger clattered the crossbar twice with shots as Bayern pushed for the goal which would have put the game beyond doubt.
On Saturday, hosts Borussia Dortmund warmed up for Tuesday's Champions League clash at home to Shakhtar Donetsk with a 3-1 win over Hanover 96 to stay second.
Poland striker Robert Lewandowski netted twice having only been allowed to play on Friday after the German Football Association (DFB) reduced his three-match ban.
Bayer Leverkusen remain third, just a point behind Dortmund, after scoring twice in the last eight minutes to come from behind for a 2-1 win at home to VfB Stuttgart.
Schalke, who host Dortmund in next Saturday's Ruhr derby, are up to sixth after they beat Wolfsburg 4-1 with 19-year-old man-of-the-match Julian Draxler scoring two and setting up one.
The Royal Blues are still in Champions League contention after their last 16, first leg 2-2 draw at Galatasaray with the return in Gelsenkirchen on March 12.
Bremen suffered their third straight defeat, dropping to 13th, after they suffered a 1-0 win at home to Augsburg, who remain third from bottom, while Nuremberg moved up to 12th with a 1-1 draw at home against Freiburg.
Hamburg drop to seventh after their 1-1 draw at home against bottom side Fuerth.
On Friday, Moechengladbach picked up their first win in seven games thanks to Dutch striker Luuk de Jong's goal with a 1-0 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt, who remain fourth despite having now gone five games without scoring

Adelaide United see their finals hopes take a dive on an afternoon of farce

The referee brings the match ball out for the Adelaide United v Brisbane Roar clash. There were soon problems with balls used in the game found be to be underinflated. Source: Getty Images

ADELAIDE United is not only the worst-performing side in the top six but in the entire competition - after a balls-up turned its finals assault into farce on Saturday.
Now Adelaide's four-match run towards the end of the home-and-away series will go a long way to proving whether the Reds are title pretenders or contenders, given their five-match form slump.

When about five balls used during the Adelaide and Brisbane Roar clash at Hindmarsh were deemed flat, the sorry state of the leathers ultimately told a sad story about the Reds' season.
Adelaide's Marcelo Carrusca best summed up United's frustration when he belted a flat ball into the eastern stand after a pass.

Perhaps Carrusca was annoyed about more than just the state of the balls as the grand final trophy is now realistically the only honour the Reds can claim this year.
Adelaide kissed its slim premier's plate chances goodbye in a 1-0 Roar loss on Saturday after it seemingly had a hand on the silverware in November.

With just four points to its name in the past five clashes, Adelaide skipper Eugene Galekovic says United's slump after another home loss to Brisbane this season is a snag in the side that must be unravelled if it is serious about winning silverware.
"It's hard to explain why. We know at our best we can compete with anyone and it was nowhere near that (against Roar)," he said.
"We need to improve that and we've got to work on things and get better with finals around the corner. We've got to be ready for that.
"We've got to stay positive as a group - it's five or six weeks to get there.
"We need one win to get there and finish top four."
Western Sydney Wanderers leapt 11 points clear of the Reds to top the table with just 12 points up for grabs after beating Central Coast 1-0 in a sellout thriller at Gosford.

But Adelaide's title assault turned sour before Christmas after it was dicing with Mariners for pole position.
Adelaide held its premier's plate hopes alive for six out of the opening eight rounds then fell in a heap.
The first sign of fragility was a convincing 2-1 defeat by Mariners in Gosford in December. It was a failure against class opposition, then Western Sydney handed the Reds a 6-1 shellacking.
That thumping proved United was now miles away from the best teams in the competition

Sydney FC coach Frank Farina bemoans team picking up red cards on the road

Sydney FC defender Fabio (right) is sent off against Perth. Picture: Daniel Wilkins Source: The Sunday Times

SYDNEY FC coach Frank Farina concedes their recent knack of picking up red cards on the road is "killing" them.
Sydney haven't won away from home since their 2-1 win over Wellington on December 9, with the Sky Blues losing five and drawing two since then.
But it is their past four away games that has caused particular concern to Farina, who has watched his team pick up five red cards in that time.
Fabio Alves has been sent off twice during that period, with the latest a 56th-minute red card in Saturday night's 2-1 loss in Perth.
With just four rounds remaining, eighth-placed Sydney have plenty of work to do if they are to make the finals.
Farina said his star-studded team needed to clean up their discipline in order to be a more competitive force on the road.
"People ask me the question, 'why is it you haven't won away from home in the last six games?'," Farina said.
"There's a very simple answer to that - you've got to try to keep 11 men on the park if you're going to have a chance, and we haven't done that.
"It's killing us. It's making it really hard for the rest of the players that do stay on."
Luckily for Sydney, their next two games are at home.
Unfortunately though, those games are against Central Coast and Melbourne Victory - two teams right in the mix to win the championship.
And it doesn't get any easier after that, with Sydney rounding out the season with away games against the high-flying Western Sydney and defending premiers Brisbane.
Farina has labelled Saturday night's clash with the Mariners at Allianz Stadium a "must-win".
But Sydney will be sweating on the fitness of Socceroos skipper Lucas Neill, who pulled up tight in his calf after the Glory game.
Italian great Alessandro Del Piero scored his 12th goal of the season with a stunning 27m thunderbolt against Perth Glory
 

Wellington Phoenix end low week on a high with victory over Melbourne Heart

THE Wellington Phoenix ended a tumultuous week with a deserved 1-0 A-League win over the Melbourne Heart in Dunedin today.
Jeremy Brockie scored in the first half to give the competition's bottom club their first win since they beat the Perth Glory 1-0 in Auckland on February 2.
Wellington finished with 10 men after striker Stein Huysegems received a second yellow card late in the match for a tackle on Simon Colosimo.
The result left the Heart winless for their 16th consecutive away game stretching back to 2011.
Phoenix went into the game after a week in which coach Ricki Herbert's resignation was followed by a 2-1 loss to the Newcastle Jets on Wednesday night but dominated today at Forsyth Barr Stadium and probably should have won by more.
Wellington made the early running, Brockie and Huysegems both hitting the bar and Ben Sigmund heading the ball into the ground in front of goal.
They went in front after 19 minutes when Brockie volleyed home a cross from Paul Ifill for his 14th goal of the season.
Phoenix had a golden chance to go two up three minutes later but Huysegems hit the left-hand upright after goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne narrowed the angle.
The home side had a clear edge in possession and territory in the first half but were unable to make capital, missing at least six clear-cut chances.
The second spell started in a similar vein to the first, Sigmund and Ifill both heading over the net.
Heart began to threaten midway through the second spell, but the Phoenix defence, backed by a small but noisy crowd of 4000, was equal to the task

Adelaide United captain Eugene Galekovic concedes top spot is out of reach

ADELAIDE United captain Eugene Galekovic has virtually conceded the Premier's Plate after last night's 1-0 loss to Brisbane Roar at Hindmarsh.
With Western Sydney Wanderers now on top of the A-League ladder after a pulsating 1-0 win over CentralCoast in Gosford last night Adelaide is running out of time and points to catch the runaway leaders.
Adelaide in third position before fourth-placed Melbourne Victory - on equal 36 points - face Newcastle Jets at home today.
Adelaide is 11 points adrift of Wanderers with just 12 points up for grabs before the finals series and nine points behind second-placed the Mariners.
Galekovic said he was aiming for at least a fourth place finish and a home final.
But the Reds can still be dumped out of the play offs if it continues its erratic form.
"We've got to stay positive as a group, it's five or six weeks to get there (finals)," Galekovic said at Glenelg before the Reds recovery session this morning
"We need one win to get there and finish top four.
"We're still in a good spot we're still third depending what happens today.
"I've been in situations where we've been last and second last and it's hard to turn it around and right now we're third and we've got stay positive."
Galekovic couldn't pin-point why Adelaide was in such disarray last night.
But he revealed Adelaide interim coach Mike Valkanis launched a rocket at his side during the half-time break last night.
Valkanis seemingly lost his patience before his voice box was reduced to a snarly growl at the end of the clash.
"Particularly the first half it wasn't up to scratch, we didn't rock up," Galekovic said.
" Then we copped a rocket from Mickey (Valkanis) at half time and it changed a little bit.
"In the end we didn't win at home and in the end that's what we want to do at Hindmarsh.
"We want to make it like people come here and they fear us.
"It's hard to explain why, we know at our best we can compete with anyone.

Roar coach Mike Mulver says Brisbane yet to pass biggest A-League test

RESURGENT A-League champions Brisbane Roar have yet to pass their biggest test, according to coach Mike Mulvey.
After a woeful start to their title defence, the Roar could find themselves in the top six by the round's end following their 1-0 away win against Adelaide United on Saturday night.
Mulvey couldn't hide his pleasure at the result, with the scoreline not fully showing Brisbane's dominance of the third-placed Reds.
"It was probably as dominant a 1-0 win as I've been involved in for a while," Mulvey said.
The Roar had 57 per cent possession and twice as many shots on target than the Reds, with Ben Halloran's 82nd minute goal sealing a deserved triumph.
"If you keep knocking at the door, something is going to happen for you," Mulvey said.
"It took us a long time. As we said at half-time, if it takes us until the 95th minute, let's just keep playing the way we're playing.
"We could have easily been a couple of goals up at half-time."
But Mulvey said his club's biggest test was showing such ominous form consistently, with games against powerhouses Melbourne Victory and Central Coast in the next fortnight.
Brisbane took sixth spot but whether they hold it depends on Melbourne Heart's result against Wellington on Sunday.
"It is well documented we're not happy with where we are on the table and we're trying to do something about it," Mulvey said.
"It's the business end of the season.
"We have been working very hard and ... we're still the masters of our own destiny.
"The key thing now is can we do that again next week - that is the big test."
Adelaide, while still third, have just one win from their past seven games and their caretaker coach Michael Valkanis was seeking the same trait as Mulvey - consistency.
"We have to find that consistency quickly, we have to find the players that will stick to the game plan, that will stick to the things we're working on and consistently do it," Valkanis said.
"It has to become habit. We will force it to become habit and keep working on it

David Beckham returns to the Champions League as his two former clubs square off

Paris Saint-Germain's David Beckham returns to the Champions League. Source: AFP 
DAVID Beckham is back in Champions League action this week after a six-year absence, yet it's the glamour game between two of his former clubs that has the world gripped with anticipation.
Manchester United's last-16 match against Real Madrid is delicately poised at 1-1 after a riveting first leg, and both teams are heading into Tuesday's return match at Old Trafford energised by morale-boosting wins in their domestic leagues at the weekend.
Madrid, especially, looks in prime form after back-to-back victories in 'clasicos' against fierce rival Barcelona and, in Cristiano Ronaldo, possess arguably the in-form player in world football at the moment going back to face his former team.
"You are talking about two of the greatest clubs in the world,'' said United manager Alex Ferguson, whose team is the runaway leader of the English Premier League.
"Emotions will be high and I am sure it will be a tremendous match.

``If we can get a blank against us on Tuesday, we would go through. But I think both teams will score - I just hope we get more than them."Beckham hasn't played in the Champions League since 2007 - his last year with Madrid - but he should be involved for Paris Saint-Germain when the French club hosts Valencia on Wednesday with a 2-1 lead from the first leg.
"I played in some big games in the US but you always miss being involved in games like this in Europe,'' said Beckham, who has played a part in PSG's past three matches.
"t is a while since I played in the Champions League, so I am excited."
Borussia Dortmund's match against Shakhtar Donetsk is also in the balance after a 2-2 draw from the first match in Ukraine, but this week's other last-16 game has virtually been wrapped up already with Juventus 3-0 ahead against Celtic with a home match to come.
United's success this season has sparked talk of a possible Champions League-Premier League-FA Cup treble, which the team achieved in 1999, but Madrid is a different side to the one that approached the first leg at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Successive wins over Barca for the first time since the 2007-08 season have quietened speculation brewing earlier in the season that Madrid might be ready to break with Mourinho.
Yet all that could change if Madrid fails to advance in the Champions League, with the club focused this season on winning what would be its 10th European Cup title.
"We are on a very good run, and when we play like a team it is difficult to beat us,'' Madrid defender Pepe said.
"The victory (on Saturday) was important - it gives us more hope for the game on Tuesday.''
While Mourinho rested most of his big players at the weekend - including the 39-goal Ronaldo, Xabi Alonso, Mesut Oezil and Gonzalo Higuain - Ferguson played the majority of his in a 4-0 win over Norwich.
Ferguson, seeking a third Champions League title, is in bullish mood after his team gave Madrid problems in the first leg.
United midfielder Ryan Giggs will play some part in Tuesday's game, making his 1000th senior competitive appearance for club or country.
Beckham - another veteran midfielder still going strong - is likely to start on the bench for PSG, which is without star forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic following his sending-off in the first leg against Valencia


Join the Studs Up blog from noon to discuss Melbourne Heart's awful record on the road

BENCH use questioned: Coach John Aloisi calling the shots during Heart training. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun

DESPITE all the huff and puff about an improved away performance, Melbourne Heart produced another insipid display on the road.
The 1-0 scoreline to crisis-hit Wellington was flattering to Melbourne Heart, who didn't show any signs of desperation until the dying stages.
There were no excuses for Heart - a full squad, coming off the back of a great win, Phoenix playing on neutral territory in Dunedin and the club in disarray after coach Ricki Herbert's resignation

It just looked like Wellington wanted it more than us," John Aloisi said afterwards.
Quite damning considering what was at stake.
Imagine a Kevin Muscat or Jacob Burns playing in the same circumstances.
They would be vocal, encourage and challenge teammates, bully the opposition and demand the ball at clutch moments.
They are - were in Muscat's case - players opposition players hate facing but teammates love lining up alongside.
Or Central Coast's Pedj Bojic, who urged his teammates to lift in the dying stages of the Wanderers clash on Saturday.
There was none of that for Heart, who have too many nice guys on the park and a leader with a bit of mongrel should be the number one priority when Aloisi goes shopping in the off-season.
Heart players are clearly scarred by their away form and Aloisi needs to shake things up.
Unfortunately Heart's two final games are its last two of the season, against Brisbane and Central Coast.
Heart doesn't want to go Bluetongue Stadium in the last round of the season needing a result.
Does Aloisi punish the players at the selection table now for the home clash against Adelaide United on Labour Day Monday?
The same 11 that mauled Sydney FC a week earlier started in Dunedin.
I think it's time for Aloisi to make some big calls.
His subs were too predictable - Nick Kalma, as usual, made way for Fred while Golgol Mebrahtu replaced Richard Garcia.
I believe there was room for both of them on the park, as Garcia is the closest thing Heart has to a leader.
He's vocal on the pitch and doesn't shirk responsibilities, and he's versatile, so switch him elsewhere.
Aloisi also missed a great chance to start Dutchman Marcel Meeuwis in New Zealand.
The 32-year-old arrived a month ago with great pedigree, with Borussia Monchengladbach and Feyenoord among his previous clubs.
He's been a sub three times but a deep-lying central midfielder like him either starts or he doesn't.
He came on in the 81st minute and coincidence or not, it was Heart's best period of the game and the only time it seemed to look desperate.
Heart's away losing streak is now 11 games.
VICTORY'S BACK
Newcastle did Melbourne Victory a huge favour by resting Emile Heskey and Michael Bridges for the clash.
A youthful looking Jets side would've walked taller by just having the pair on the bench.
So when James Brown and James Virgili became ill the day before the game, Gary van Egmond's had no choice as he'd already announced that the pair would be rested.
Irrespective of the opposition, the win was huge for Victory and important in terms of restoring confidence.
The lesson learnt from the last month is that the 'false 9' position is the most important for Victory in this formation and gameplan, as Archie Thompson proved yesterday.
When Marcos Flores was subdued against the Wanderers, Victory struggled to build any meaningful attacks and the same applied against Central Coast when he was injured.
Unless Francesco Stella finds his feet in the coming weeks, Ange Postecoglou must continue playing one of his stars in the 'false 9' role - Flores when he's fit and Thompson when he's not.
GOAL OF THE WEEK
Rojas' fifth was a gem. Huge question marks surrounding the defending, but he used pure skill to lose his marker and round keeper Mark Birighitti

Francesco Totti ties for second most goals in Serie A

AS Roma's forward Francesco Totti celebrates after scoring during the Italian Serie A match against Genoa at Olympic Stadium. Picture: Tiziana Fabi Source: AFP

THE man who crushed the Socceroos in the 2006 World Cup, Roma captain Francesco Totti has moved into equal second place on Serie A's all-time scoring list with his 225th goal.
Tottu has tied Swedish great Gunnar Nordahl for second place .
Totti converted a penalty in the 16th minute of Roma's match against Genoa at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday.
It was the 10th goal this season for the 36-year-old Totti, who is in his 21st season with Roma having made his debut for his hometown club as a 16-year-old.
Silvio Piola - who played for Pro Vercelli, Lazio, Torino, Juventus and Novara from 1929-54 - leads the all-time list with a seemingly insurmountable 274 goals.
Nordahl scored most of his Serie A goals with AC Milan but concluded his career with Roma in 1958.
Australia bowed out of the 2006 World Cup after an injury-time penalty by Totti
 

Tottenham beat rivals Arsenal 2-1 in Premier League

Tottenham Hotspur's Gareth Bale scores a goal against Arsenal during their Premier League derby. Picture: AP Source: AP 

GARETH Bale has stolen the spotlight yet again as the Tottenham star inspired a crucial 2-1 win over north London rivals Arsenal.
Bale has been in sublime form of late and the Wales winger produced a typically clinical finish to break the deadlock in the first half at White Hart Lane before Aaron Lennon doubled Tottenham's lead just moments later.
Per Mertesacker's goal early in the second half set the stage for a tense finish, but Andre Villas-Boas's team, now unbeaten in their last 12 league games, held on to move above Chelsea into third place in the Premier League and within two points of second-placed Manchester City.
Spurs have had eight managers since they last finished above Arsenal in 1995, but Villas-Boas could be the one to end that barren stretch as his side sit seven points clear of fifth placed Arsenal, who face a major struggle just to qualify for the Champions League.
"It was a very, very important win," Villas-Boas said. "The motivation now is different, we are extremely confident and Arsenal are at a low.
"But we still have to fight hard, we have big weekends to come and we need to keep doing our job. There is so much to go still."
Arsenal's first defeat in six league games left them five points behind Chelsea in the race for a top-four finish and added to the sense of a club in crisis.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger had awoken to reports that Arsenal could be the subject of a takeover bid from a Middle East consortium which would place his future under scrutiny after eight years without a trophy and this was another dispiriting afternoon for the Frenchman.
"We were on top of the game when we conceded two goals," Wenger said. "We produced a lot of energy and desire but we were not decisive enough in either penalty area. It's difficult to swallow."
Bale had few chances to flourish while Spurs struggled to find their rhythm in the opening 30 minutes and his only contribution of note was to dodge a banana thrown from the section filled with Arsenal fans.
But Bale is far too dynamic a talent to be subdued for long and in the 36th minute he demonstrated the cool head and lethal finishing that sets him apart from the rest of the Premier League at present.
So much of the pre-match focus had centred on Bale's remarkable form, with some pundits even mentioning him in the same breath as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, and here was further evidence to support their case.
Timing his run perfectly to meet Gylfi Sigurdsson's astute pass, Bale burst into the penalty area before flicking a fine finish past Wojciech Szczesny for his 24th goal of the season for club and country and his 10th in his last eight games.
In an instant, Bale had completely transformed the tone of the match. Where Arsenal had been relatively comfortable, they now reverted to the nervous group that has struggled for much of the campaign


Melbourne Victory smash Newcastle Jets 5-0 to regain third place in A-League ladder

Victory fans ramp up the atmosphere. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun

MOMENTS after avenging a three-game losing streak Melbourne Victory coach Ange Postecoglou was plotting a winning run heading into April's finals series

While refusing to concede defeat on a top two position, Postecoglou said Victory's focus was to regain form in the final four games of the season after yesterday's 5-0 mauling of Newcastle Jets.

Victory slammed three past the Jets in a frantic 22 minute opening half spell and showed no mercy in the second half with Marco Rojas and Mark Milligan both bagging a brace.

A Jets win would've brought them to within three points of Victory, instead Melbourne rose to outright third with the top two still a mathematical possibility.

"Can we catch em? Who knows. But I tell you what, if we win the next four going into finals I wouldn't want to be playing us and that's the most important thing regardless of ladder positions," Postecoglou said.


"Our target was to finish first, if we don't achieve that we would've failed in our target but the next key thing is to try and hit finals time playing well.

"We've had a pretty punishing run of games, every game's a big game for us and we've been trying to get up for all of them week after week.

"The injuries and absences has meant we've had to toss things around and brought new players in so it*s been a tough six or seven weeks and we needed to come out of that.
But the visitors were woeful and the decision to rest marquee Emile Heskey and goalscorer Michael Bridges backfired sensationally.

But coach Gary van Egmond was unapologetic afterwards, and a home win against Perth Glory on Friday will justify his call.

With Marcos Flores joining Gui Finkler on the injury list, Victory has lacked that class in the "false 9" - or attacking midfield - position but yesterday Archie Thompson provided it during his 58 minute shift.

Returning from a hamstring injury, his influence was on show from the get-go as Thompson assisted Rojas' opener after just eight minutes and won the penalty for Victory's third which Milligan converted on 30 minutes.

"We looked a lot more threatening going forward like we had done for most of the year, particularly in the first half," Postecoglou said.

"Because of absences of players we've been pretty easy to shut down because if they shut down one or two avenues we're not finding other ways through, but with Archie there and when Marcos (Flores) comes back, we've got two or three different ways of opening up the opposition."

Rojas' double (taking his tally to 14) won't do his confidence any harm after going four games without a goal

 
Melbourne Victory fans hold up a protest banner. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun 

Victory was shellshocked after last week's 6-2 humbling at Central Coast and the relief was evident on the players when Rojas opened the scoring.

But it wasn't long before the game resembled a training session with the Jets performing as the second 11.

Adrian Leijer headed home Rojas' corner 15 minutes in and two minutes later Daniel Mullen followed suite, but his goal was disallowed after Ruben Zadkovich copped a whack in the head from Mark Milligan.

Milligan converted a 30th minute penalty after Thompson was brought down by Jacob Pepper.

Milligan stepped up again in the 57th minute when Pepper pulled down Mullen - it appeared soft but referee Jarred Gillett gave the Jets defender his second yellow card.

Rojas literally walked through the Jets defence to score his second and Victory's fifth on 66 minutes.
MELBOURNE VICTORY 5 (Marco Rojas 8m, 66m, Adrian Leijer 15m, Mark Milligan 30m pen, 57m pen)  NEWCASTLE JETS 0 at AAMI Park. Crowd: 17,778. Referee: Jarred Gillett.

Western Sydney Wanderers say they won't choke heading into business end of the A-League season

POISED to complete one of the most remarkable sporting triumphs of recent years, Wanderers coach Tony Popovic has scorned suggestions Western Sydney could let the Premier's Plate slip through premature celebration.
Two points ahead of the Mariners after Saturday's dramatic 1-0 win at Bluetongue Stadium, Western Sydney could extend their lead when they face bottom-placed Wellington on Sunday, 24 hours after Central Coast have to travel to Sydney FC.
While Mariners boss Graham Arnold insisted there were "plenty of twists and turns to go", with four rounds left, Wanderers have a fairytale first-season title in their own hands thanks to an eighth consecutive win - equalling the Melbourne Victory's A-League.
After Wellington, Popovic's side must travel to Melbourne Heart, host Sydney FC in the season's concluding derby and finish with a trip to Newcastle.
The Mariners by contrast follow Sydney FC by travelling to Japan for an Asian Champions League game, hosting Brisbane, then Adelaide away and finishing with a home fixture against Heart.
Despite seeming to hold the whip hand, Popovic almost took offence at the idea his side might assume the Premier's Plate was theirs for the taking.
"Every week you ask me the same thing (about) will they (the players) get complacent?" Popovic said.
"Eight wins in a row shows they're not getting complacent and they certainly won't be next week.
"That doesn't guarantee a result against Wellington but I can guarantee you they'll be well prepared for that game."
The result also means the Wanderers and Mariners will finish one and two in one order or the other, earning a weekend's rest in the first round of the finals and a subsequent home final in the second round.
But having targeted a second consecutive Premier's Plate and leading the competition for 15 rounds, Arnold was left bitterly disappointed after one of the most memorable A-League nights at Bluetongue, in front of a crowd of 18,271 including several thousand raucous Wanderers supporters who braved hours of drenching rain.
The Mariners missed a golden chance to take their lead by fluffing a fourth consecutive penalty. This time goalkeeper Mat Ryan was bizarrely selected to take the kick but fired his shot straight at Ante Covic.
Instead, a late breakaway goal by Labinot Haliti ensured Western Sydney became the first side other than Brisbane Roar to win at the Mariners' home ground since back in December 2010.
"There's a lot of twists and turns to go. There's four tough games for everyone," Arnold said, insisting that the pressure is now on Western Sydney to maintain their composure at the summit.
"If you don't score when you're dominating you're vulnerable. It's a hard lesson to learn, but it's a lesson we've got to learn and we've got to move forward - simple."
There is little time for his side to mope, as the Mariners prepare to face Kashiwa Reysol in Japan on March 13. They are likely to return to Australia only on Friday March 15, two days before the game against Brisbane Roar.
Arnold suggested there would be an inquest into the penalty hoodoo his side has developed, with misses in their last three games from Daniel McBreen, Nick Montgomery and now Ryan.
"If you've got goalscorers out there, they should be the ones who want to take it," Arnold said.
"It's probably gotten to the stage where you've got to designate someone specifically now and he has to take that responsibility.
"Even if he misses he backs up and does the next one."

cards on the road

Sydney FC defender Fabio (right) is sent off against Perth. Picture: Daniel Wilkins Source: The Sunday Times 

SYDNEY FC coach Frank Farina concedes their recent knack of picking up red cards on the road is "killing" them.
Sydney haven't won away from home since their 2-1 win over Wellington on December 9, with the Sky Blues losing five and drawing two since then.
But it is their past four away games that has caused particular concern to Farina, who has watched his team pick up five red cards in that time.
Fabio Alves has been sent off twice during that period, with the latest a 56th-minute red card in Saturday night's 2-1 loss in Perth.
With just four rounds remaining, eighth-placed Sydney have plenty of work to do if they are to make the finals.
Farina said his star-studded team needed to clean up their discipline in order to be a more competitive force on the road.
"People ask me the question, 'why is it you haven't won away from home in the last six games?'," Farina said.
"There's a very simple answer to that - you've got to try to keep 11 men on the park if you're going to have a chance, and we haven't done that.
"It's killing us. It's making it really hard for the rest of the players that do stay on."
Luckily for Sydney, their next two games are at home.
Unfortunately though, those games are against Central Coast and Melbourne Victory - two teams right in the mix to win the championship.
And it doesn't get any easier after that, with Sydney rounding out the season with away games against the high-flying Western Sydney and defending premiers Brisbane.
Farina has labelled Saturday night's clash with the Mariners at Allianz Stadium a "must-win".
But Sydney will be sweating on the fitness of Socceroos skipper Lucas Neill, who pulled up tight in his calf after the Glory game.
Italian great Alessandro Del Piero scored his 12th goal of the season with a stunning 27m thunderbolt against Perth Glory.

Perth Glory beat Sydney FC 2-1 in A-League clash

Alessandro Del Piero after Sydney missed a good chance. Picture: Daniel Wilkins Source: The Sunday Times



ALESSANDRO Del Piero produced a 27-metre wonderstrike but it wasn't enough as Sydney FC crashed to a 2-1 defeat to A-League strugglers Perth Glory at nib Stadium on Saturday night.
Glory goalkeeper Danny Vukovic could only watch on in amazement as Del Piero produced a trademark thunderbolt in the 28th minute to level the score at 1-1 following Chris Harold's earlier strike.
But Shane Smeltz's 34th-minute volley was enough for Perth to secure all three points, lifting the Glory back within three points of sixth spot.
Sydney, who ended the match with 10 men after Fabio received his second yellow card of the night in the 56th minute, face a major battle to secure a finals spot following back-to-back losses.
With four rounds remaining, Sydney remain one point adrift of sixth spot

But with tough games against Central Coast, Melbourne Victory, Western Sydney and Brisbane in the run home, Sydney must rediscover their mojo if they are to make a late charge into the top-six.
Glory midfielder Daniel De Silva, who turns 16 next Wednesday, became the second youngest debutant in A-League history when he came on as a 62nd-minute substitute.
De Silva, who signed a two-year deal with the club last week, provided the Glory with plenty of energy, and displayed enough talent to justify his tag of being a star in the making.
Glory, who entered the match without Jacob Burns (back), Travis Dodd (calf) and Nick Ward (quad), were dealt a further blow when defender Steve Pantelidis was forced off late in the first half with an ankle injury.
There were chances galore in the first half, and it was Glory winger Harold who struck first in the 19th minute after a neat midfield run from Liam Miller.
Del Piero was a menace from the outset, and the Italian great made Glory pay when he was afforded too much space in the 28th minute.
Vukovic hardly moved as Del Piero's swerving strike hit the top corner, but Perth were back in the lead when Smeltz side-footed home a dangerous cross from Scott Jamieson.
Although Vukovic could do little to stop Del Piero's goal, he produced a series of sharp saves throughout the match.
PERTH GLORY 2 (Chris Harold 20m, Shane Smeltz 35m) SYDNEY FC 1 (Alessandro Del Piero 29m) at nib Stadium. Crowd: 8,378. Referee: Strebre Delovski

Newcastle Jets eye bid for Harry Kewell

Newcastle Jets aim to bring Harry Kewell back to the A-League after his time with Melbourne Victory last season. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun

NEWCASTLE remain interested in signing Harry Kewell despite hopes of a cameo appearance being dashed.
The Jets' bold play to bring Kewell back to the A-League was halted after the player himself decided he would take too long to reach match fitness.
But impressed by their dealings with the Socceroo, whose career has been in limbo for nearly a year, the Jets are leaving the door open for a deal next season.
Newcastle officials met Kewell last week when the 34-year-old was in Melbourne for a fashion shoot.
Aware of Ryan Griffiths' impending exit to join Beijing Baxi, Newcastle were keen to assess Kewell's fitness and ability to play a meaningful role in the season's crescendo.
"In the end it was decided that by the time he got here and in training it would be too late," revealed a source with knowledge of the talks.
Jets officials were said to be impressed by Kewell's professionalism, and the fact that the player himself ultimately judged that there was too little time to make an impact.
Aware of his marketing cache and buoyed by the success of former England striker Emile Heskey, the Jets will canvass a possible deal for Kewell next season internally.
Kewell is a former teammate and friend of both Heskey and Newcastle striker Michael Bridges in England, though the latter is still fighting to earn himself a new deal for next season having reversed an earlier decision to retire.
It appears increasingly unlikely that Kewell will secure a club deal in time to prove his fitness and form for June's World Cup qualifiers, putting in doubt his long-stated aim of playing at a third World Cup.
The forward turned down a highly lucrative move to Japan, and has split with celebrity agent James Erskine 18 months after parting company with Bernie Mandic, his adviser since 1991.
Kewell passed up an offer of more than $2 million to stay at Melbourne Victory for another two seasons, returning to the UK for family reasons.
Meanwhile, Heskey and Bridges will both miss today's trip to Melbourne to face Victory after the 2-1 midweek win in Wellington.
Midfielder Zenon Caravella will also miss the clash at AAMI Park after straining his hamstring during Wednesday's fixture across the Tasman, brought forward from round 26 because of New Zealand's World Cup qualifying commitments.
Sam Gallaway is also in doubt after hurting a knee in a heavy challenge from Wellington's Corey Gameiro

Newcastle Jets youngsters backed to fire

Newcastle Jets stars Michael Bridges (left) and Emile Heskey have been rested for the clash with Melbourne Victory. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun 

NEWCASTLE Jets coach Gary van Egmond has rubbished suggestions his new-look team of youngsters will be lambs to the slaughter in Melbourne today.
The Jets have rested veteran stars Emile Heskey and Michael Bridges and will field one of the youngest A-League squads in history against Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park, with an average age of just over 20.
But rather than play down his side's chances, Van Egmond says it's the Victory who are under more pressure.
"We've lost one of our last nine and they have lost three straight - I think we are the team with more confidence," Van Egmond said.
"Yes, we'll have a young side out there, but with that youthful exuberance, sometimes it's a case of players just feeding off each other. They can be oblivious to the pressure faced by players who have played a lot more football."
With Heskey and Bridges rested after the club's mid-week win against Wellington, the Jets have been further hampered by midfielder Zenon Caravella's hamstring injury and a knee problem for left back Sam Gallaway.
Caravella will miss the Victory game and next Friday night's clash with Perth, while Van Egmond revealed yesterday that Gallaway was also out of today's clash.
Striker Ryan Griffiths' surprise exit to China early last week has put a further strain on the club's roster.
Skipper Ruben Zadkovich, at just 26, will be the oldest Newcastle player on the field today in a team featuring several teenagers.
But the coach says there will be no excuses and hinted an ambush was not out of the question, claiming the Jets would not be sitting back and playing for a draw against Ange Postecoglou's team.
"We really want the three points," he said.
"We win and we are three points off fourth with a number of games still to go.
"There are a few areas we think we can really hurt Victory, but, in saying that, they are one of the best counter-attacking teams in the league so you have to respect that.
"It will be important for us when we go forward that we get really well organised in our defensive structure."
Young Socceroos striker Adam Taggart will fill the void up front in the absence of Heskey, while Mitch Cooper is set to make his first starting appearance in Bridges' attacking midfield role.
One thing the Jets won't lack is pace, with Craig Goodwin and James Virgili on the flanks sure to stretch Victory's defensive capabilities.
Victory will welcome the return of striker Archie Thompson from a hamstring injury, a factor Van Egmond played down.
"They get Archie back, but it's his first game in I don't know how long because of the hamstring injury," van Egmond said.
"It's always a little bit risky. They obviously want to win, but, at the same time, I know they have been training extremely hard.
"They are getting worked really hard because they are looking to taper for their finals assault rather than concentrating on the A-League right now.
"So in that respect, it's going to be an interesting contest."

Antarctica is the new Afghanistan

So it’s come to this then.
Kevin Rudd doesn’t get to to go to Copenhagen with an ETS in his pants, which probably means he’ll sulk and won’t go at all.
This is clearly bad news, particularly if you live within a 100m flat stroll to the beach.
Actually, make that 140m, because up-to-the-minute science tells us sea levels are now going to rise 1.4m by 2100, not one metre as was originally suggested all of, ooh, two weeks ago.
Remember, kids - one centimetre up equals one metre in.
We found out about this new science just now because it was prepared in time for another impotent summit under way at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC.
Fifty years ago, almost to the day, the Antarctic Treaty Summit was signed by 12 nations because they too, realised the South Pole was a troublemaker.
These days it’s because bits of it on one side keep falling off into the sea at a faster rate than bits of it on the other side are growing, but way back in 1959, it was because bits of it were being eyed off by superpowers.
And given that in just under a weeks’ time, most of the discussion in Copenhagen will be centred around how to stop the profusion of greenery and aliens suddenly sprouting up all over the driest continent on Earth, perhaps more attention should be paid this week to the summit which centres around who actually owns the godforsaken thing. 
Which is to say, nobody does, according to the Antarctic Treaty. Except Australia, NZ, France, Norway and the UK. According to the Antarctic Treaty.
In fact, the powers in Copenhagen could do a lot worse than run their eyes over the Antarctic Treaty of 1959, which is about as pacifying and accommodating as treaties can get.
The 12 original signatories agreed that Antarctica would be neutral territory, owned by no nation, but with a clause that no interpretion of the treaty should be seen as “a renunciation by any Contracting Party of previously asserted rights of or claims to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica”.
So while the rest of the world are free to pretend they can claim a slice of it in 2041, when the treaty expires, those who already claim a piece of it are also free to pretend they own it.
Everyone kicks a goal.
But while this sounds ideal, up until now that’s only been because Antarctica has been covered with a mile-thick sheet of ice and inhabited by singing penguins and algae.
Yet if the rate of melting continues at the same rate of scientists one-upping each other on accelerating predictions of ice-melt, dear old Antarctica will be looking more like the Andes by, say, 2140.
And because by then we’ll all be confined to Uluru, the Snowys and Tasmania, we’ll be cursing ourselves if we don’t do something about making Clause IV stick for eternity, mainly because as far as signatories go, we’re by far the biggest stakeholder.
Antarctica is about 1.3 times bigger than Europe, and according to Clause IV (agreed to by nearly 50 nations these days, but remember, only recognised by Australia, NZ, France, Norway and the UK), we own 60 per cent of it

It’s pretty high - some of the mountains rise to 4500m and most of it is 1500m above sea level, which in 2140 will put it a comfortable 1440m above sea level after the last block of ice drains away into the Great Southern Ocean.
It’s full of coal and surrounded by oil and gas. And by all reports - well, one - it’s believed to hold 50 billion barrels of oil, more than double the known reserves in the US.
Not altogether surprisingly, with peak oil approaching, the US has reserved the right to claim a slice of Antarctica in 2041, particularly given the current ban on mining in Antarctica ends in 2048.
The Russians will stake their 2041 claim on the assertion that the redivision should be based on who got to Antarctica first. Namely, the Russians.
Somehow, you can’t help but get the feeling Australia might be little short-changed when this wheeling and dealing begins.
So here’s my message to Kevin Rudd - pull our troops out of Afghanistan and send them to protect our wint’ry Southern wastes pronto.
We’re going to need all the elevated land we can get.

Letter to Copenhagen from the People of Australia the final draft

Dr Mr Rudd,
We, the undersigned Australians, are willing to help reduce the effects on our atmosphere from our fun-loving, carbon-emitting lifestyle. But before you go running off and telling the rest of the world that we’re all ready to swap topside for tofu, please be aware that we, as Australians, would like you to consider the following:
1) Try and make as little as possible from the Australian taxpayer.
Philip_B of Perth
2) Don’t powder-puff the issue, show real leadership and guts, for those who follow us in generations to come.
Barry H
3) Not sign any treaties that will allow other countries to impose fines or expect large payments from Australia for missing so called emission targets. We dont want you committing Australians for generations to come for something which other countries wont commit to and especially a scheme such as ETs which is still nothing but A PIE IN THE SKY. A treaty of this nature was never a part of your election platform and you have NO mandate to commit us to it.
MD of The Bush
4) Grow a backbone Mr Rudd and lead the world in exposing the scam that is man-made global warming. Ignore the constant fear-mongering based on the results of computer modelling and look at the raw data.
Roger
5) Any agreement HAS to include Europe, USA, China and India.
Kimbo of Perth WA
6) Please instead of a TAX on us, why doesn’t the govt invest in renewable energy. Why not make coal power illigal??? I will support you fully if you say that we will run off solar, nucular or wind power.
Kim of Sydney
7) Fund science and build new industries and create jobs, prosperity and a sustainable system to be inherited proudly by future generations
Blitz of Sydney
8) Make it a Carbon Tax instead of using credits to dilute the impact. The EPA in Australia is ready to go now. Tell the world to get their own EPA and do the same. Cheaper alternative!
michael of Potts Point
9) Don’t try to preen yourself at this feel good forum at our expense.
Jim of Perth
10) We need a PRS not an CPRS. PRS is a Population Reduction Scheme. The Planet is already overpopulated by a factor of 5 to 10. Earth cannot sustain a poulation of any more than 1 Billion so any talk of of limiting C02 is just nonsense - it will never solve the problem. Why do we need 6 Billion+ people and growing? Until the leaders of the World grow up and start discussing the real problem - overpopulation - we are just wasting our time.
P. Darvio of Sydney
11) The polluter pay system provides the only incentive for business and government alike to actively reduce pollution levels.
Matt of Brisbane
12) If you sign us up for the ETS payments we can’t afford, make sure somewhere in the fine print there is a clause for when we become third world we can crank up those old coal fired power stations and have other countries pay us. Smokin’
Concerned of Northbridge
13) Even putting aside our rampant consumerism, can we please put some REAL limits in place to slow and hopefully stop pollution?
Pauline of Brisbane
14) Want CO2 Emissions exempt. 
Scott of Sydney
15) In view of some of the startling material revealed in the Leak OR Hack of the CRU in England await the results of an OPEN AND HONEST Enquiry.
Jane
16) Please Mr Rudd watch this video before you leave for Copenhagen http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zOXmJ4jd-8&feature=player_embedded
Bob Atkins.Horsham Victoria.
17) Please come back from Copenhagen with no deal on anything and at the same time provide the Australian People with your resignation.
Kalgoorlie Kid of Kalgoorlie
18) Every day and night in every Australian city there is either a brutal bashing or Murder of our citizens.  WHY is there no outcry we just except this day in day out and all we see is words and headlines in the news, we should not tolerate this at all.  This is a real issue not Global Warming. 
callen of 3207
19) Don’t sign anything on my behalf, you little four-eyed commie!
steve of moonee ponds
20) Please point out that going greener creates more jobs. People making wind turbines, recycling plastics etc. And that regardless of global warming, living a little greener makes our surroundings nicer and our resources last longer.
Trude
21) Bring in electric powered cars for the everyday public use. Road side or car park recharge stations. In fact deal with China for cheap affordable electric commuter cars. The big car companies can either compete or vanish. Get rid of our dependancy on oil companies.
Lee Mazengarb of Sydney
22) Show our grandchildren that humanity can work together so that all humans can have a best possible future.
Eddie of Melbourne
23) If we loss any-more species of flora or fauna we have lost the battle. I have faith in you Mr Rudd and know you and Penny Wong will give it your best.
judith of brooklyn park sa
24) Belief in human caused climate change is just that. There is NO proof. Rudd, you are going to sign Australia up to a world-wide cult if you sign Australia up to this. Why don’t you join Scientology? It’s a CULT too!
John
25) I herby declare that if MR Rudd or Malcom Turnbull hide a global tax on me in the form of a Carbon trade, I will vote for any viable independent (sorry greens (reds). Rudd you already sold us out along with the CSIRO, BOM and the ABC.
Michael, Adelaide
26) Dear Mr Rudd,Why is it that we have to pay more tax and distribute this to the rest of the world when as a nation of 20 million, our current output per square kilometer is one of the lowest in the world. Is it not more more sensible to promote the opportunities of current technoligies, solar, wind, geothermal,water tanks etc. and reduce the tax on these items so the vast majority can implement these within their housholds, or is it that by creating a carbon trading scheme there is political and finacial motivation. Would it not be better to become world leaders in alternative technoligies which are more sustaniable than to allow corporations to dictate the terms and conditions of the situation. We as Australians should not be subject to fundamental developements which allow self interested corporations and governments to dictate and dominate policy within this country. We should be utilising all means possible to achieve pollution reduction not increase taxes and costs so others can benifit in the short term.There are better ways!!
MM, Melbourne
27) How about pushing for a Carbon Emmissions Reduction Scheme based on the individual, rather than companies. I suggest a scheme where a ‘carbon price’ is placed on items such as electricity, fuel, paper, and groceries, based on their carbon emmissions. Issue individuals with an amount of carbon credits (say 10,000), which they can spend how they like on these items, just like currency. They can sell off their unused credits to make a monetary profit on an ebay style exchange either online or at Australia Post, encouraging a reduction in carbon emmissions. If they exceed their limit, they must buy extra credits, costing them money. The government could then reduce the amount of credits issued to individuals by 3-5% per year, therefore increasing demand for a scarce resource and making it more expensive to exceed carbon allocations, and also more incentives to reduce as the price for selling rises.This would allow the free market to work, while giving individuals extra incentives to reduce their emmissions. It may cost a little more, but I’ll bet it will be 10 times as effective, and a lot more popular with the public. Give it some thought Kevin.
Brodie, Hobart
28) Don’t you dare sign any agreement on my behalf before discussing it with everyone in the country. People can barely afford to live now, and you want to suck up to other world leaders so they think your a good guy. Please somebody stop him!
Deborah, Gold Coast
29) Mr. Rudd, don’t sign away our rights, freedoms and futures. Don’t burden we average Australians with even more taxes. If we sign up at Copenhagen, then we will not be the forerunners or the morally righteous leading the world on to a brighter future. We will be laughing stock of the world. Who in their right minds signs up to something that is truly half-baked? We have no clear indication of what our commitment will mean but worse… we will have no mechanism to protest or negotiate once the true consequences are known. We will effectively become the slave state of a World Government. There is no turning back. There is no ‘out’ clause. We will have signed away rights given us by our constitution without having a referendum. How can this be? America has it’s Benedict Arnold. At whom will future Australians direct similar venom?Much better to fully understand the commitment and be able to live with the outcomes than achieve some paltry degree of prestige for being the first lemming. Copenhagen signals the first definitive progression towards one world government. Climate control may be the issue (it may not, but lets not debate that) but the real outcome is much more to do with global control and power than it is to do with global warming.You do not have a mandate for this. You are a passing figure in today’s politics and you have no right to condemn all future generations of Australians to the unknown and uncontrollable demands that Copenhagen represents.
Flabbergasted, Sydney
30) Rudd your a fool ! dont sign us upto something until USA, China and India agree to go ahead otherwise its a useless and a very expensive exercise for NOTHING!
Brad, Caringbah
31) KRudd please when in Copenhagen be mindful to point out that Australia recognises that Climate Change is real, however mans influence in that process is the stuff of fancy and fiction. Point out that some over zealous scientists are just scaring the world to get some action and attention. p.s. Inform everyone that Australia will be closed for business after the introduction of an ETS - unless the other world leaders know of a better way that does not destroy whole economies.
Dean McQuillan, Findon
32) Our way of life and food production is dependent on energy supply and water. Coal and oil resources are limited and due to run out within the century. Alternative energy resources are required which can either be renewable or perhaps the most energy dense substance on the planet – Thorium. Our future energy supply coincidently also tackles the issue of carbon. However when it comes down to the fundamentals, the primary cause of the destruction of the environment is due to too many people. Population growth continues to outstrip worldwide food production and available water resources. In addition population expansion also results in the extinction of other species for which we share this planet.
Corydora, Wollstonecraft
33) Has anyone mentioned the Australian Constitution yet? The Australian Constitution is law and it states that any acknowledgment of allegiance, obedience, or adherence to a foreign power warrants disqualification from office.Is
Dr Who, Sydney
34) Stop listening to the economists! Now that you can see what a mess of things the economists have made, why don’t you try listening to the SCIENTISTS, the only ones who really know what they’re talking about with respect to climate change.
Eva, Brisbane
35) Renewable energy generators will never generate enough energy to replicate themselves. Renewable energy is a con.The ETS will affect the poorest the hardest as it will increase the price of everything. A quota system which, would be much fairer and more effective, has never been discussed.
Harry C, Adelaide
36) URANIUM is the short term answer, the rest is jaw plappin bulls..t!
Michael Chorney
37) Take a solar powered hair dryer
TC, Vietnam
38) Dear Mr Rudd,Could you please bring back a photo of the Price and Princess and some cheeses if it’s not too much trouble.Thanking you,Rugar
Rutgar, Sydney
39) Mr Rudd, Could you please listen to reason. Listen to the people that voted you in and exercise a little patience. Without going into the climate change debate, just think about the interests and voices of the country BEFORE signing us up to another tax. The world has been around for millions of years, and will probably be around for millions more. Why rush a decision that is going to be a more fundamental change to the Australian economy than the GST was. I think Australia, the world, and the climate can wait a few months while this issue is properly debated and agreed upon not only by the government but by the people of Australia
Mathew, Sydney
40) Mr Rudd, Its time to really focus on climate change.What do I mean by focus on this? Well thats simple, actually look at the issue and discuss with people other than your advisors. MAKE THE PROCESS TRANSPARENT AND IN THE OPEN. You know as well as I that your advisors are only interested in keeping their jobs, its about time you show us that you are in fact the leader you puffed yourself up to be and not just another politician looking for fame and glory.
RasputinDelProfundo, Clayfield
41) Simple, I want them to solve, or at least make a dent in Climate Change without it effecting residential and small business electricity, food and natural has prices please Mr Rudd. Furthermore, I don’t want Australia to do it until China and India have also done it.
Andrew Jones, Country NSW
42) Go and enjoy Mr Rudd, but don’t think that the Australian public don’t know what is going on.If you continue to increase the average tax payers output and don’t increase their input, not only will you have an increase in the homeless to contend with you will have what America has.. The middle and lower class struggling to keep their heads above water. I believe in this whole SAVE THE WORLD crap but my main focus is to raise my 2 children, work, eat , pay my mortgage, all bills while trying to keep my head above water. Please don’t sink the hard working Australians by trying to save the planet. It wont work
Jade, Springwood
43) Mr Rudd, you may look and act like the milky bar kid, but they are not your milky bars to give away...... Kevin07, Recession09. Don’t give away the farm in Copenhagen.
Etharchy
44) Drop the whole thing, get your UN job some other way.
GF, NSW
45) Dear Mr. Rudd, Before you go to Copenhagen, please obtain an estimate from the States as to the cost to Australia that feral animals have caused/are causing to our native Australian fauna/flora say for the years to 2015, 2020 & 2050. Then go to Copenhagen & tell the conference that you are going to spend this amount of money on dramitically reducing the feral animal problem in this country. You will find that by drastically reducing the numbers of feral animals such as buffalo, camels, pigs etc the reduction in “gases” generated by these, will more than compensate in monetary terms for other gases that you intend to reduce at a ridiculous cost to the Australian public.
Animal Rush, Coowonga
46) This is far too important to rush through the senate in time for Copenhagen. Lets have a double referendum, Climate Change and Border protection.
Faye, Melbourne
47) Be bold, be brave, be far sighted. Create green jobs! We want Australia to be a better and greener place for our kids. Even if there is no climate change, doesn’t it make sense to create renewable energy resources instead of our current fossil fuel dependency? And while you’re at it, let’s talk about how the planet is supposed to support its burgeoning population!
Lemonaid, Perth
48) Stop using the word consensus when it comes to science. Science is not about consensus it is about fact. Either climate change models are correct or they are not. If one fact comes to light that cannot be explained by the current models then they are incorrect, not by consensus are they correct.Prove Climate change with good science not shoddy computer models then everybody will have no choice but to believe.
Dovetree, Qld
49) Kevin, Spit the bone out you are on the wrong course as usual , the major impact to Australia is Water not so much Pollution , it would be grand to have an ETS in graduation and I am all for that, however focus on the real issue of Water now..
First Geoff of Sydney
50) Remove stamp duty and registration fees for electric cars. Make electric car purchases by business 50% tax deductable in first year. Government additional rebate for trade in cars more than 10 years old. Solar panels on houses to have full depreciation over 5 years and new house construction to have mandatory solar panels. All this to be paid for with increase in petrol tax and registration of petrol cars/trucks.
Please take this list of suggestions from your people and present them to the most important person at COP15 as a matter of national urgency.

New job horror stories what’s yours

Ever turned up to a new job to find, well, nothing? No computer has been sorted, the phone doesn’t work, your new boss is away on holiday and no one appears to know what you are there to do? Not exactly the welcome mat.
Or, have you signed up to a job believing the salary was base plus super only to find after receiving your first salary deposit that the figure actually included super? Maybe it took a few months for the promises of a happy, inclusive workplace to give way to the reality of an unapproachable boss and co-workers huddled in unwelcoming cliques?
According to attachment expert Anthony Sork our perceptions about an employer start while we are still job-hunting. Presumably they are positive enough to drive us to apply for a job and go through the recruitment process. From that moment on, our interactions and experiences with the employer will reinforce those positive perceptions or erode them. Sork says an employer has 120 days to get you “attached” and if they screw that up, the damage could be permanent. 
A newbie that fails to attach will move from being a giver to a taker. You know that ‘anxious to prove myself’ feeling you get in a new job? Well, the detached don’t focus on the value they can add but rather what they can extract from their new employer. And, with six-month probation periods used by many employers, the bruised newbie also has a nice big window through which to escape. No need to give notice if he/she finds a new role.
Sork says when a hiring decision fails it is “overwhelmingly” the newbie who chooses to leave. Just over 10 percent of those that leave within probation were asked to leave and less than 10 percent of those that go within 18 months.
Sork’s consulting firm, Sork HC, is collecting tales of new job mishaps to use anonymously in a ‘how to’ book for employers. I am all for anything that improves the experience of work. If you want to share a story contact Karalyn Brown via karalyn@employeeattachment.com but I’d love it if you’d warm up by posting a comment below.
Attachment is influenced by our feelings in four key areas - security, trust & value, acceptance and belonging. Sork says our direct manager has the biggest impact on our perceptions but co-workers also play a role.
“Security” includes physical safety, financial security and emotional security. Safety applies to both the workplace and the journey to and from work. When people work at multiple sites, safety would include the company car to get from one place to another. Financial security relates to whether the newbie believes they are getting what they signed up for and whether they feel confident the employer can keep paying them.
Emotional security is interesting and relates to how the job impacts self-perception.
“When the person goes through the recruitment process, they experience a heightened sense of self – who they are, what they want and what they bring,” says Sork.
“That first 120 days will either reaffirm that perception or the manager could undermine it..‘I thought I was a 10 and you are making me feel like a 5’. It is not what you think of me [as my manager] that is important, it is what you are making me think of me.”
Trust in an employer is high when a newbie starts and they want to continue to trust their employer. When trust gets eroded, the employee moves from giver to taker.
Acceptance relates to what the employee believes their manager and co-workers think of them. “It’s like walking into a party and thinking ‘do these people want me here?’ It’s about the cues the new person receives,” Sork says.
Belonging is actually ‘now I have had a chance to observe and be part of this work environment do I ‘want to be part of it?’ I have walked in the room, been part of the party and am now thinking, ‘is this the crowd for me?’
By the way, Sork says many companies are reverting back to the three-month probation to make their new hires feel more like one of the gang faster. The six-month probation became common with the introduction of the Fair Work Act.
So what has been your experience? Told one thing, found another? What you were sold at interview is what you found? Have you ever left a job within probation?

Read more: http://blogs.news.com.au/cubefarmer/index.php/news/comments/new_job_horror_stories_whats_yours#ixzz2MYTr1Eg2

Of Snakes and Banjos (Horror stories)

It wasn't like he'd meant to kick her as he came round the corner. Anyway, it wasn't really a kick, more like a bit of a bump. No, a nudge, that's what it was, just a nudge. After all, sitting on the pavement like that, it's her own fault really if people end up nudging her. She'd sat there as long as he could remember – way back into his childhood – the same short grey hair, wrinkled face, shapeless clothes, sitting cross-legged on that grimy old blanket just outside the station. Blind eyes closed – well, he assumed she was blind, he'd certainly never seen her open her eyes. But come to that he'd never seen her stand or move either, and surely she must get up sometime and go somewhere. She couldn't stay sitting there all the time with that weird old banjo,could she? Snakeskin – he'd never seen another one anything like it. She didn't really play it, even, just plucked the strings in a desultory sort of fashion – and he'd never seen anyone throw her money for her efforts. Made him wonder why she sat there day after day. He'd apologized when he knocked her over – well, he'd meant to, but he was in such a rush that maybe he hadn't. She'd have been fine anyway – it was only a nudge after all, just a little nudge.
They used to make up stories about her back at school. She used to be a great beauty, but she was blinded by a jealous rival. Or maybe it was all an act – she was working for Them (whoever They were), keeping a watch on things, not really blind at all. Or she'd sold her soul to some devil or other, but got tricked (as tends to be the case with devils) and ended up with just a strange banjo and sightless eyes. He'd added his own – she wasn't human at all, the snakeskin was the giveaway. Didn't everyone know that snakes didn't need eyes to sense – they could feel vibrations, sense the heat of your body? She sat there waiting for prey and when night fell slipped away in serpent form through the drains, fangs dripping with venom so potent that it etched the stones it dripped upon. Now he came to think of it, they pretty much gave up on the stories after that one – they all just gave her a wide berth.
He was well down Nathan Road by now, crowd-weaving along through the usual masses of Hong Kong humanity, ducking past the tailors and the fake Rolex sellers as they lurked in the side streets like trap door spiders waiting for their tourist prey. He shuddered for no reason that he could put his finger on. The word 'prey' in his thoughts just seemed to flick a chill up his spine and his steps faltered for just a second or two. He shook it off and plunged into the human sea, crowd-swimming onwards to work.
It wasn't until work was over, standing waiting for the ferry, that he thought of her again. It might have been the setting sun colour-matching the neon as the light faded that brought her back to mind, thoughts of a snake in the darkness. But he stood packed into a press of people, safe in their midst, and the thought was only fleeting. As the scrum pored onto the ferry he made his way to his usual spot at the front where there was a slight breeze off the water cutting through the humidity. The lights of Kowloon ahead grew steadily closer and brighter, when he noticed the movement in the water. Parallel to the boat something kept pace with it, something long and narrow left a slight wake, caused ripples to wash against the side of the ferry. There was something there. Something long, thin, greenish in colour. His breathing speeded  as he craned his neck, trying to see more clearly, but the ripples and reflections thwarted him. The ferry bumped against the Kowloon jetty and he struggled to move as the rippling form drew closer and closer, but the crowd held him in place. It filled his vision, the sinuous form moving towards him. He became aware that he was holding his breath, gripping the railing so hard that his fingers hurt. Closer and closer it came, swaying side-to-side. Then out of the water it came, pulled hand-over-hand by a crewman – a green, sodden rope being hauled in, wound up, placed back on the deck where it belonged. He breathed again in a shuddering gasp and staggered off with the flow of the crowd.
The lights of Nathan Road glared as garish as ever, but somehow it seemed darker than usual tonight, the shadows between the streetlamps deeper and blacker. He scuttled from lamp-post to lamp-post. Why did nobody else seem to see it? They all seemed to be behaving as normal, even when a neon sign not ten yards from him flickered and went out; when the lamp he was under visibly dimmed, crackled and hummed. He walked faster, then faster still. What was that noise he just heard? It sounded like... a sort of slithering sound. His nerve snapped and he broke into a run, pushing people aside, until he nearly slipped over something at his feet, something that made a slithering sound as his foot struck it. He stared down wide-eyed and found himself looking at a dried squid. One of many. From an overturned crate at the side of the road where two men shouted at each other. He stopped, took a deep breath, willed himself to be calm. All in his head, all in his head. His pulse slowed, his breathing eased. He walked onward at a more normal pace.
Nearly home now, he looked over at the corner where he'd nudged the old woman this morning. Nobody there. She'd gone home of course – where else would she be at this time. He rounded the corner, opened his front door, stepped inside. Flicked the light on, closed the door behind him. Flung his jacket onto a chair, flung himself into another. Then all the lights went out – not just the lights in his flat, but the lights outside shining in through the windows. And somewhere in the darkness there was the smallest of sounds. It sounded like a banjo being softly plucked.


BIO: Originally a Londoner, now living in Devon, an intermittant writer for as long as I can remember, now finally making the effort to put fingers to keyboard on a more regular basis. An avid reader and appalling hoarder of books of many types

The Quarry (Horror stories)

Two hobos walked by the side of the road, both were thirty-five, unshaven, and wearing denim. One of them was wearing a red bandana. They were on the shoulder of the road and a truck flew by them; they made no attempt for a ride. They walked single file, the sun was beating down, and the men sweated. One of the hobos stopped and wiped his face with his shirt tail. He’d been in Vietnam and his life hadn’t gone that well since. He looked up into the sun. The second hobo waited for him, a pasture was all around them. The first hobo started to walk again, he walked a ways before the second one started again. The second one fell to the ground and didn’t move.
The first hobo saw lights in the distance and felt better. He kept walking; he didn’t know where Tyrone was. He was getting on his nerves anyhow so maybe it was better they split up. Every man for himself - he learned a long time ago. He was coming to a town. Once in town, he looked for the camp. There were around ten other hobos, and drifters and vagabonds around a couple of fire pits and some lean tos made out of scraps of wood, sheet metal and cardboard. He sat by a fire and another tramp handed him a cup of coffee. One or two of the men asked him questions, and one of the men asked him about his brother who he expected any day now. The hobo answered he travelled alone. The man said his brother wore a red bandana. The hobo wanted to change the subject and asked about work and a man told him about the orchards about a half mile away. The man told him women from the church came and wanted to have meetings. He said a preacher came one time but couldn’t get anyone to listen to him. The townspeople didn’t like them much so they stayed either in camp or at the orchard if there was work. He said there wasn’t any work right now but he hoped that would change soon. There were blankets to sleep with - the old and sick got the lean tos, and you could eat from the “pot” for five dollars a week otherwise you were on your own. A man played a guitar and the music made him wistful.
He heard a train whistle in the distance, he remembered the time he hopped a train from Oklahoma to Texas. He felt hungry but didn’t have five bucks. He thought he had something and went through his pockets and found three dollars. He gave it to the man who’d talked to him and he said he could eat for three nights. He went to where the man was cooking over a fire and he told him to take a cup. He picked up a battered tin cup from the table and the man filled it with stew. He said he could fill it one more time. The hobo went back to the fire, and tasted the stew, but it was too spicy so he dumped it back. That other man was there too and he asked him again about what road he came to town on, and talked about how his brother was travelling the same way, and the hobo figured he was talking about Tyrone, but didn’t let on. The other man watched him for a long time, and the hobo was silent.
The man said he talked to his brother the other night on the phone at the filling station, and he started whittling; he shaved the bark off a stick with menacing purpose. He told the hobo his name was Thomas and he was looking for his brother, Tyrone. He told the hobo he thought he was Tyrone because he came to camp at the same time he expected Tyrone. The hobo spread his hands and shrugged his shoulders; he felt Thomas’s distrust of him. Thomas played with the knife in his hands. The hobo had the idea to tell Thomas he’d passed a stiff on the road with a red bandana, but didn’t. He asked Thomas where the train ran and Thomas pointed. Thomas played with the knife. The hobo wanted to sleep but felt unsettled; Thomas was making him anxious. He thought again about telling him he passed a hobo with a red bandana, but realized that would only make him more distrustful.
He couldn’t go back; he had to stick to his story that he didn’t know who Tyrone was. He realized he had to move on; maybe in the morning he would hop a train and go anywhere away from Thomas. That the way it was for him when there were problems – he moved on. He loved Sandy and she broke his heart and he took to wandering. He enlisted for Vietnam to make her proud and she broke his heart. The music made him sorrowful. He worked and never begged from no one; he took pride in that, but didn’t like interacting with others; it was always hurtful somehow so he kept moving. There were kind people in the world and there were devils, and he was wounded by both. There was a time when he tried to figure that out, but he’d given up. He understood there was something wrong with him, but he didn’t hurt anyone else so he had nobility. Other hobos would talk to him about Jesus and he would walk away. He had moments when he stood by a lake or in the forest when he felt connected to something greater than himself, and that would calm him, and all he could figure was it must be God in some form or other. He almost killed himself a couple of times; once in Vietnam, and a couple of times after he got home. After Sandy betrayed him he got in a bar fight and was in the hospital for a month. He saw young couples and it reminded him of him and Sandy and he couldn’t free himself from that; the only thing was to keep searching, keep searching. Thomas was staring at him from across the fire. He wanted to sleep. He stood up and went and got a blanket. He found some thick grass and lay down and tried to sleep.
He felt the coolness on his face and heard voices. It took him a few seconds to realize where he was. He sat up. He saw the back of a man with a red bandana, and knew he had to get out. He grabbed his denim jacket and headed in the direction from where he’d heard the train whistle. Soon he was in some woods and stopped running. He found a path and walked on that until he came to the tracks. His stomach was empty. He walked the tracks until he found a mail drop and waited. He didn’t know where he was other than he was in Pennsylvania somewheres. He sat off the track and waited; the sun was beating down. He wondered when Tyrone came into camp. He fell asleep for how long he did not know.
He woke and from the sun knew it was mid-day. He thought he heard something in the woods and tilted his head to hear better. He heard something rustle, then, it was quiet. He pictured Thomas and Tyrone with knives drawn tracking him in the woods. He figured a train should come along anytime now. It was hot and bright. He thought he only had so much time before the brothers found him. He flinched when he saw a snake near him; he watched it slither away. He wiped the sweat from his brow, and his stomach ached.  He wanted some water. He looked up and saw birds circling in the sky, he felt light-headed and heard the babbling of water nearby. He stumbled when he stood up and looked for water. He found the stream and dropped to his knees and the stream disappeared. He was on his hands and knees looking at the ground. He heard the whistle, and told himself to get up. He got upright and went back to the tracks and saw the smoke of the train in the distance. After some more time, he heard the whistle, and saw the train in the distance. He watched the train as it got closer and closer, and it was slowing down to make the mail drop. He started to run along the side of the track. The engine went by him and he looked for an open door and the ladder to jump onto. He saw the open door and ran along with the ladder next to him until, instantly, the train disappeared. He stopped running and was panting. His senses were playing tricks with him and he was light-headed. He sat by the side of the track; sweat was on his face, and nothing was in focus. He needed food to get stronger; to be a hunter and not quarry

Fluff (Horror stories)

her bears impossible. Yet eventually I found it and I got to see the fluff again.
But dad caught me and hit me calling me a sick freak and a monster for doing that to one of my sisters toys. He said I was just as crazy as my psycho mother.
That’s when I figured out I couldn’t get my fluff from the house anymore. I had to get creative, so I would go out and scour the neighborhood for what I could find. Dad, beside that one time he caught me, couldn’t care less about me. It wasn’t easy but I’d find things: sometimes in the trash, sometimes in the forest. I would find them and cut them open and just marvel at how the fluff spilled out. I learned there were different kinds of fluff. Some was super light, and would get caught in the air and just fly away. Then again there was fluff that was heavy, that would drop down to the ground with a wet flop. But the most important thing was that I didn’t get caught and hit again.
One day I saw dad sitting by an empty crib. Apparently he took Isabel to the hospital and didn’t come back with her, like the time he didn’t come back with mom. He hung his head downward, perpetually rocking it back and forth like a pendulum counting down.
I didn’t care.
The only thing I cared about was finding more and more fluff.
But one day God spoke to me. He proposed to me a question that would completely change my life.
Does everything have fluff?
Yes God! Everything is filled with fluff, and that’s part of what makes it so amazing!
Does everything have fluff?
Yes God! But I already gave you the answer didn’t I?
Does everything have fluff?
I didn’t know how to answer that time, but then it struck me. Everything was filled with fluff! Which means so was Dad! Dad was filled with fluff too!
After the hospital Dad would just stay in bed when he wasn’t depressingly looming over the crib like it’s shadow. So I made my way up to his room. He was sleeping, or at least I think he was sleeping. The room reeked of the strong and overwhelming smell of alcohol and there was an empty white bottle in his hand.
I think he was sleeping.
He didn’t move when I opened him up.
It was like that time with the bear and me again, so uncertain of what to do with the knife. I poked him a bit and he didn’t move. He just kept sleeping there as still as the bear. His skin was much tougher than the others, so I had to lean my weight to get a bit of fluff to leak out. There was something special about those few small specks. It wasn’t like the others; it glistened in the way I imagined gems would. With the knife I stabbed into his belly determined to see more. It was like plunging into a heavy water balloon that didn’t pop. I lifted the knife forward, cutting upwards as more and more fluff spilled out.
The fluff was beautiful.
Dad’s fluff was the most beautiful I had ever seen!
It sparkled and shined like nothing ever seen before. I would take handfuls of it and toss it up in the air, where upon it separated and would flop down on top of me. It was so warm against my skin. This must be the touch of God! Dad’s fluff was so beautiful! I just kept playing and playing and playing until there was no fluff left in him.
But something was wrong.
Something was very wrong.
Dad’s fluff wouldn’t come off.
I tried rubbing it against the sheets, against the towels, against the carpet, but the fluff wouldn’t come off my hands. I panicked because this never happened before. I put my hands through the hottest water I could stand and rubbed.
I rubbed.
And I rubbed.
And I rubbed.
And I rubbed.
And I rubbed.
And I rubbed.
And I rubbed until I saw it.
I had fluff too!
I had the same beautiful fluff that Dad had!
This was what God was really trying to tell me!
That’s why the fluff wouldn’t come off, because God was trying to show me that I had fluff too. How could I have been so stupid this entire time!
With mom’s knife in my hand, the first knife I ever used, I plunged it into my stomach like I did with Dad and the bear. It hurt. It hurt so much and that was how I know it was working. It was the same pain Dad would give me; that God would give me. It was the pain that let me know this was the right thing to do!
I watched as the fluff poured out of me. It was amazing! I don’t even know how to describe it. It would be like trying to describe the beauty of song to the deaf. Oh how beautiful it was. How it shined and the floor and twinkled against the light. God was truly wonderful to gift something this beautiful inside me. Oh how beautiful the fluff was. My only regret was that I couldn’t see Mom’s fluff, I bet it would have been beautiful just like mine. I wondered if she would have also loved to see Dad’s fluff. Oh how I love fluff! It was the one thing in my life that made sense.

Joshua Flowers lives in Maine and after his first publication has become a much more serious and stoic man. He primarily deals with the art of horror and is currently working on multiple projects including NaNoWriMo and several short stories. Keep an eye out for the name Joshua Flowers