Vargas and Goodwin highlight the true worth of a marquee amidst the Bolt drama

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After a week dominated by Usain Bolt, football fans were given a timely reminder of what a true marquee player is in the clash between Adelaide United and Newcastle Jets.

For 50-odd minutes, Friday night’s clash was dull and uninspired, save for two moments of Craig Goodwin moments of ingenuity late in the first-half.

That was until Ronald Vargas entered centre-stage and delivered a goal that would release the game from its slumber and launch it into a fever.

The goal won’t win goal of the year, get nominated for the Puskas Award or even get nominated for goal of the week in all likelihood.

It will and does, however, show the true worth of a marquee player in the A-League. The game required a touch of class after being bogged down with lumbered long balls and ill-directed crosses, Vargas duly delivered.

The hard work was done more or less by a lapse of concentration from United’s defence and a vastly-improved Jason Hoffman, yet, Vargas still had to finish the chance to make it count.

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Others who have gone before him and will proceed him will attest, that is not as easy as it sounds nor as easy as it looks.

Goodwin may attest to that after he valiantly tried to spark the game into life in the dying embers of the first half. The first was an audacious free-kick situated on the right wing just outside the box, a position in which most people would play the numbers and cross it in.

Most people aren’t Craig Goodwin though, and as he left the cross-bar shaking from a savagely whipped free-kick, he awoke the United legion of supporters into full-voice.

And if they were in full-voice then, they were in raptures later, as Goodwin met Michael Marrone’s sublime cross at the back-post.

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It is in these moments that marquee players matter, when the game is on the line and quality is required, these are the men entrusted to lead their team out of the doldrums and into the jubilation of victory.

In contrast, Usain Bolt was allegedly disappointed with the Mariners contract offer of $150,000, which is quite a come-down from the suggested $3 million-dollar figure Bolt is chasing.

The latter is a stratospheric number, usually reserved for the likes of marquees, with past marquee-alumni Alessandro Del Piero reported to being earning around that wage when he donned the Sky Blue of Sydney.

Crowd-pulling and merchandise sales are worth considering when hiring a marquee. The value of Del Piero was highly beneficial for the A-League as membership numbers grew according to the FFA.

Yet for all the bluster of “The Trial”, the results matter equally, if not more so, than the financial aspect of it all.

And the true marquees in Ronald Vargas and Craig Goodwin illustrated that on Friday night.

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Adam Daunt
Adam Daunt
A student at University of South Australia who hopes his writing disguises his lack of sporting prowess and a fan who masquerades his choice in mediocre teams as being hipster

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