Close competition flips coaches fortunes

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Football is a funny game sometimes, just ask Frank Farina or Gary Van Egmond.

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Put in a couple of bad performances and suddenly people are calling for the coach to be sacked.

But conversely, string a few wins together and the pressure is released and people quickly jump on the bandwagon.

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The closeness of the A-League epitomizes how quickly things can change and even early in the season team’s fortunes can rapidly shift.

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Two weeks ago Sydney FC’s Frank Farina was under immense pressure to keep his job after three consecutive losses and some insipid performances.

But all of a sudden the Sky Blues have put back to back wins together to firmly entrench themselves in the top four and Farina’s job is safer than Switzerland during World War II.

Jets boss Gary Van Egmond has also copped his fair of criticism so far this campaign after the Jets lethargic loss to Sydney in round one and failing to score a goal in the opening three rounds.

But after a much improved performance against Central Coast a fortnight ago, they broke through for their first win of the campaign with an impressive 2-1 away victory over Adelaide United last weekend.

The win released some of the pressure off van Egmond but coming into this weekend’s clash against an understrength Roar outfit nothing less than a win would dispel the Jets boss’ critics.

And the Jets didn’t disappoint.

Playing in absolutely treacherous conditions at Hunter Stadium, the Jets rallied from a goal down at half time to secure a priceless 2-1 victory in front of a brave crowd of 7692.

You could have been forgiven for thinking the match was played in the middle of an English winter given the amount of rain to fall at Hunter Stadium.

Both teams managed to play decent football in testing conditions, but the Jets would be the far happier team after walking away with all three points.

Luke Brattan gave the Roar the lead after his deflected shot found the back of the net after 39 minutes, but Taggart equalised just after half time with a classy chip after a Matt Smith error.

Nathan Burns missed a penalty soon afterwards for the Jets but Taggart scored one of the goals of the year after pouncing on an errant pass from Donachie, smashing a left foot shot into the top corner.

The Jets managed to hold on for the victory and remarkably moved into third spot on the A-League ladder, with a clash against a struggling Melbourne Heart at home next Sunday to look forward to.

Suddenly the two most under fire coaches in the A-League are flying high. It’s a funny old game.

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