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The 2005–06 A-League was the 29th season of top-flight soccer in Australia, and the inaugural season of the A-League. After over 12 months without a national professional club competition since the close of the 2003–04 National Soccer League season, the first match in the A-League was played on 26 August 2005. The competition was made up of a triple round robin league stage before a championship playoff featuring the top four teams.

A-League
A-League text logo.svg
Season2005–06
Dates26 August 2005 – 5 March 2006
ChampionsSydney FC (1st title)
PremiersAdelaide United (1st title)
Champions LeagueSydney FC
Adelaide United
Matches played84
Goals scored232 (2.76 per match)
Top goalscorerAlex Brosque
Bobby Despotovski
Archie Thompson
Stewart Petrie
(8 goals)
Best goalkeeperClint Bolton
Biggest home winMelbourne Victory 5–0 Sydney FC
(16 October 2005)
Biggest away winNewcastle Jets 0–5 Queensland Roar
(26 January 2006)
Highest attendance25,557
Lowest attendance1,922
Average attendance10,955

Of the eight participants, four came from the National Soccer League (1977–2004): Perth Glory (established 1995), New Zealand Knights (1999), Newcastle Jets (2000) and Adelaide United (2003). New Zealand Knights had previously entered the NSL as the Auckland Football Kingz, but were significantly restructured and have a vastly different playing roster. Queensland Roar previously competed in the NSL from 1977–1988 and had competed in the Queensland State League since then as Brisbane Lions.

Adelaide United were named Premiers after finishing the season seven points clear at the top of the league. The first A-League Grand Final took place on 5 March 2006, with Sydney FC becoming the league's inaugural Champions, defeating the Central Coast Mariners 1–0.

Contents

ClubsEdit

Team City Home Ground Capacity
Adelaide United Adelaide Hindmarsh Stadium 17,000
Central Coast Mariners Gosford Bluetongue Stadium 20,119
Melbourne Victory Melbourne Olympic Park Stadium 18,500
Newcastle Jets Newcastle Energy Australia Stadium 26,164
New Zealand Knights Auckland North Harbour Stadium 25,000
Perth Glory Perth nib Stadium 20,500
Queensland Roar Brisbane Suncorp Stadium 52,500
Sydney FC Sydney Aussie Stadium 42,500

Foreign playersEdit

Club Visa 1 Visa 2 Visa 3 Visa 4 Non-Visa Foreigner
Adelaide United   Fernando   Shengqing Qu
Central Coast Mariners   André Gumprecht   Wayne O'Sullivan   Stewart Petrie   John Hutchinson2
  Ian Ferguson3
Melbourne Victory   Richard Kitzbichler   Geoffrey Claeys
New Zealand Knights   Zhang Xiaobin   Darren Bazeley   Ben Collett   Neil Emblen   Li Yan3
  Ronnie Bull3
  Naoki Imaya3
  Frank van Eijs3
  Sean Devine1
Newcastle Jets   Guy Bates   Mateo Corbo   Vaughan Coveny1
Perth Glory   Steve McMahon   Hiroyuki Ishida   Danny Hay   Henry Fa'arodo   Milan Jovanić3
Queensland Roar   Reinaldo   Remo Buess   Osvaldo Carro   Seo Hyuk-su1
Sydney FC   Terry McFlynn   Dwight Yorke   Alejandro Salazar   Kazuyoshi Miura4

The following do not fill a Visa position:
1Those players who were born and started their professional career abroad but have since gained Australian Residency (and New Zealand Residency, in the case of Wellington Phoenix);
2Australian residents (and New Zealand residents, in the case of Wellington Phoenix) who have chosen to represent another national team;
3Injury Replacement Players, or National Team Replacement Players;
4Guest Players (eligible to play a maximum of ten games)

Preliminary CompetitionsEdit

Two competitions were held prior to the start of the A-League season.

Oceania Club Championship QualificationEdit

This three-round competition was held in May 2005 to determine Australia's qualifier for the 2005 season of the Oceania Club Championship. It consisted of all Australian A-League clubs (i.e. all clubs except for the New Zealand Knights) and granted Perth Glory – the reigning NSL champions – a bye into the semi-finals.

  Round 1
(7 May)
Semi Finals
(11 May)
Finals
(15 May)
                           
 
  Perth Glory 1  
    Sydney FC 2  
Sydney FC 3
  Queensland Roar 0  
    Sydney FC 1
  Central Coast Mariners 0
  Central Coast Mariners (pen) 0 (4)  
Newcastle Jets 0 (2)  
Central Coast Mariners 4
    Adelaide United 0  
Adelaide United (pen) 0 (4)
  Melbourne Victory 0 (1)  

Sydney FC qualified for and subsequently won the 2005 Oceania Club Championship entitling it to a place in the 2005 FIFA Club World Championship to be played in Tokyo.

Pre-Season Challenge CupEdit

The inaugural pre-season cup was held in July and August in the lead up to the start of the A-League season. The competition featured a group stage and a knockout stage. Commentators did not give much weight to the competition as a guide for performance during the season proper, as injuries or club strategic policy ruled that many teams did not use their best players and often used experimental tactics.

Group stageEdit

Group A
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1 Melbourne Victory 3 1 2 0 2 1 +1 5 2005–06 Pre-Season Cup Semi Finals
2 Perth Glory 3 1 1 1 4 4 0 4
3 Adelaide United 3 0 3 0 3 3 0 3
4 Newcastle Jets 3 0 2 1 3 4 −1 2
Group B
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1 Sydney FC 3 2 1 0 5 1 +4 7 2005–06 Pre-Season Cup Semi Finals
2 Central Coast Mariners 3 2 0 1 4 3 +1 6
3 Queensland Roar 3 1 1 1 6 3 +3 4
4 New Zealand Knights 3 0 0 3 1 9 −8 0

FinalsEdit

 
Semi-finalsFinal
 
      
 
12 August
 
 
Melbourne Victory1
 
21 August
 
Central Coast Mariners3
 
Central Coast Mariners1
 
14 August
 
Perth Glory0
 
Sydney FC0
 
 
Perth Glory1
 

The Central Coast Mariners were the inaugural Pre-season Challenge Cup winners.

Regular seasonEdit

The A-League season commenced on 26 August 2005 with two Friday night fixtures. Games each round were held throughout the weekend, though certain rounds also featured Thursday night games. As there was no concurrent cup competition, midweek fixtures were uncommon unless they were held on Australian public holidays. A three-week break was also scheduled in December to coincide with the 2005 FIFA Club World Cup in Tokyo.

League tableEdit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1 Adelaide United 21 13 4 4 33 25 +8 43 2007 AFC Champions League Group stage[a]
2 Sydney FC (C) 21 10 6 5 35 28 +7 36
3 Central Coast Mariners 21 8 8 5 35 28 +7 32 2006 A-League Finals series[b]
4 Newcastle Jets 21 9 4 8 27 29 −2 31
5 Perth Glory 21 8 5 8 34 29 +5 29
6 Queensland Roar 21 7 7 7 27 22 +5 28
7 Melbourne Victory 21 7 5 9 26 24 +2 26
8 New Zealand Knights[c] 21 1 3 17 15 47 −32 6
Updated to match(es) played on 5 February 2006. Source: theworldgame.sbs.com.au
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored.
(C) Champion.
Notes:
  1. ^ First place qualifies for the 2007 AFC Champions League Group stage.
    Winning the 2006 A-League Grand Final earns qualification for the 2007 AFC Champions League Group stage, unless the Grand Final winners are also first place, in which case the Grand Final runner up qualifies.
  2. ^ First place through to fourth place qualify for the 2006 A-League Finals Series.
  3. ^ New Zealand Knights cannot qualify for the AFC Champions League as they are not recognised as an AFC club.

ResultsEdit

Round 1Edit

Round 2Edit

Round 3Edit

Round 4Edit

Round 5Edit

Round 6Edit

Round 7Edit

Round 8Edit

Round 9Edit

Round 10Edit

Round 11Edit

Round 12Edit

Round 13Edit

Round 14Edit

Round 15Edit

Round 16Edit

Round 17Edit

Round 18Edit

Round 19Edit

Round 20Edit

Round 21Edit

Finals seriesEdit

After the home and away season, the finals series began, with the top four teams. The finals series used a modified Page playoff system, with the difference that each first-round game would be played over two legs. The winner of the finals series, Sydney FC was crowned as the A-League champion. Adelaide United, as the holder of the top position on the league ladder, were named the 2005–06 premiers.

Standard cup rules – such as the away goals rule (two-leg ties only), extra time and penalty shootouts were used to decide drawn games.

  Semi Finals Preliminary Final Grand Final
    L1 L2    
    February 10 & 17                        
1 Adelaide United 2 1     5 March
2 Sydney FC 2 2     26 February       2 Sydney FC 1
    1 Adelaide United 0   3 Central Coast Mariners 0
  February 12 & 19   3 Central Coast Mariners 1  
3 Central Coast Mariners 1 1
4 Newcastle Jets 0 1  


AFC Champions LeagueEdit

Although Australia became a member of the Asian Football Confederation in 2006, Australian teams were not invited to participate in the 2006 AFC Champions League competition.

The AFC later determined that qualification for the 2007 AFC Champions League would be based on the 2005–06 A-League competition, despite that ACL matches will commence after the completion of the A-League 2006–07 season. Adelaide as Premiers and Sydney as Champions represented Australia.

AttendanceEdit

Team Hosted Average High Low Total
Sydney FC 11 16,669 25,557 9,132 183,355
Queensland Roar 11 14,785 23,142 8,607 162,636
Melbourne Victory 10 14,158 18,026 10,078 141,578
Adelaide United 10 10,947 14,068 7,013 109,473
Perth Glory 11 9,734 13,157 5,033 107,075
Newcastle Jets 11 8,912 13,000 5,868 98,027
Central Coast Mariners 10 7,899 17,429 5,194 78,989
New Zealand Knights 10 3,909 9,900 1,922 39,086
{{{T9}}} 0 0 0 0 0
{{{T10}}} 0 0 0 0 0
{{{T11}}} 0 0 0 0 0
{{{T12}}} 0 0 0 0 0
League total 84 10,955 25,557 1,922 920,219

Highest attendanceEdit

League recordsEdit

The following league records are from the regular season only. It does not include records from the finals series.

AwardsEdit

Award Recipient
Johnny Warren Medal (Player's Player of the Year) Bobby Despotovski (Perth Glory)
Reebok Golden Boot Award (Top Goalscorer) Four players (see below)
Hyundai Rising Star Award (U-20 Player of the Year) Nick Ward (Perth Glory)
Hyundai A-League Coach of the Year Lawrie McKinna (Central Coast Mariners)
Zurich Referee of the Year Mark Shield
Joe Marston Medal (Best player in Grand Final) Dwight Yorke (Sydney FC)

Leading goalscorersEdit

Total Player Team Goals per Round
 1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9  10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21
8   Alex Brosque Brisbane Roar 1 2 1 2 1 1
  Bobby Despotovski Perth Glory 1 2 1 1 1 1 1
  Archie Thompson Melbourne Victory 1 1 1 2 1 1 1
  Stewart Petrie Central Coast Mariners 1 1 2 2 1 1
7   Carl Veart Adelaide United 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
  Dean Heffernan Central Coast Mariners 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
  Dwight Yorke Sydney FC 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
  Ante Milicic Newcastle Jets 1 1 1 3 1
  Sasho Petrovski Sydney FC 1 1 1 3 1
  Damian Mori Perth Glory 2 3 1 1

Fouls concededEdit

Player Team Fouls Conceded
Stewart Petrie Central Coast Mariners 60
Ross Aloisi Adelaide United 50
Andrew Clark Central Coast Mariners 49
Sasho Petrovski Sydney FC 49
Steve Pantelidis Melbourne Victory 47
Terry McFlynn Sydney FC 42
Noel Spencer Central Coast Mariners 41
Carl Veart Adelaide United 40
Richard Johnson Newcastle Jets 40
Travis Dodd Adelaide United 39

Disciplinary recordsEdit

Player Team Yellow 2YC Red
Terry McFlynn Sydney FC 7 0 0
Matt McKay Queensland Roar 3 1 1
Kevin Muscat Melbourne Victory 4 1 0
Ross Aloisi Adelaide United 6 0 0
Remo Buess Queensland Roar 6 0 0

Biggest victoriesEdit

5 goalsEdit

Score Date Round
Melbourne Victory 5–0 Sydney FC 16 Oct 2005 8
Queensland Roar 5–0 Newcastle Jets 26 Jan 2006 20

4 goalsEdit

Score Date Round
Perth Glory 5–1 Newcastle Jets 8 Oct 2005 7
Sydney FC 5–1 Central Coast Mariners 5 Nov 2005 11
Newcastle Jets 4–0 New Zealand Knights 18 Sep 2005 4
Central Coast Mariners 4–0 Perth Glory 8 Oct 2005 8

Highest aggregate scoresEdit

Score Date Round
Perth Glory 5–1 Newcastle Jets 8 Oct 2005 7
Sydney FC 5–1 Central Coast Mariners 5 Nov 2005 11
Newcastle Jets 4–2 Adelaide United 14 Oct 2005 8
Newcastle Jets 4–2 New Zealand Knights 4 Nov 2005 11
Perth Glory 4–2 Adelaide United 6 Nov 2005 11
Adelaide United 4–2 Queensland Roar 1 Jan 2006 16

Honours

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit