MORNINGTON team manager Tony McKay died early on Sunday morning at the Alfred Hospital.
He had collapsed a week earlier prior to a practice match at Dallas Brooks Park against Caroline Springs George Cross which was abandoned.
Originally from Manchester in England the 77-year-old has been a much-loved figure at Mornington for decades.
Other local clubs have used social media to show their support for Mornington and the McKay family during this difficult time.
Mornington’s facebook page summed up the depth of feeling for McKay with these words:
“Tony was a pillar of our club and touched the lives of so many, young and old, in over 25 years at the club.
“A more loved man you will never meet; it’s hard to put into words what Tony means to so many.
“His caring nature, willingness to always help out and his true dedication and love for the Mornington soccer club and all the players was something to behold.
“Tony’s sheer presence in the changeroom was enough to lift the spirits of the group [and] through the good and bad times he was always there willing to talk to the players, coaches or supporters and made sure everyone had whatever they needed.
“His legacy will live on strong [sic] at MSC and he will most certainly never be forgotten …”
McKay lost his soulmate and long-time partner Cath almost three months ago and is survived by daughters Jess and Claire.
Meanwhile Peninsula Strikers geared up for this weekend’s league season kick-off by announcing three clutch signings late last week.
The Centenary Park outfit clinched the signatures of defender George Whiteoak from Casey Comets, midfielder Danny Brooks and striker Aaran Currie from Beaumaris.
Whiteoak and Currie were part of Langwarrin’s 2017 championship side while Brooks had attracted interest from Mornington and Casey Comets before re-signing for a fourth season at Strikers.
Whiteoak had a short stint with Strikers towards the end of the 2018 season while Currie includes Hume United and St Albans Saints on his résumé.
Currie’s move came as a shock as he was announced by State 1 side Beaumaris on 30 January as one of its new signings.
Currie, Whiteoak and another newcomer in attacking midfielder Shane Tagliaferro were among seven ex-Langy players who lined up against State 1 North West outfit Keilor Park in the FFA Cup at Centenary Park last weekend but the visitors dominated this contest eventually winning 4-1.
If not for Strikers keeper Robbie Acs the scoreline would have been embarrassing.
Currie’s only chance came in the 37th minute but he shot straight at Keilor keeper Frano Saric who parried at his near post.
Keilor’s Japanese trio of brothers Kotaro and Tatsuya Kuwahara and Hibiki Nakamura caused problems throughout and Strikers struggled to match their movement on and off the ball.
The opener came in the 20th minute when Nakamura jinked past Strikers right back Tuach Ter on the left and chipped the ball to an unmarked Kotaro Kuwahara setting up the smallest player inside the Strikers area with a free header and he made no mistake.
Ter gave the ball away two minutes from half-time and when it eventually fell to James Johnston his volley into the top near corner of goal made it 2-0.
Strikers hit back with their first shot on target in the second half when Ben Doree struck the ball home in the 69th minute.
That gave some hope to local fans but the natural order was restored in the 85th minute when the Japanese trio combined down the left with Nakamura’s cutback being met by Tatsuya Kuwahara who rode the initial challenge and tucked the ball neatly past Acs from close range.
It was party time now and when you play a high defensive line against Keilor you are flirting with danger.
In the 89th minute Kotaro Kuwahara broke into a one-on-one with Acs and stroked the ball past the helpless keeper to make it 4-1.
Strikers can take some consolation from knowing that this wasn’t their strongest line-up and they are unlikely to face many sides of Keilor’s quality.
At least they’ll hope so.
In another FFA Cup match on Saturday Langwarrin ran out a 3-1 winner away to Warragul United.
After a scoreless first half a defensive mistake allowed the home side to take the lead in the 50th minute.
John Maclean levelled for Langy 10 minutes later, Tom Youngs put the visitors ahead in the 83rd minute and substitute James George completed the scoreline in injury time.
The Lawton Park side was joined in the next round of the competition by Mornington and Seaford United.
A Josh Hine double guided Mornington to a 2-1 win over Altona East Phoenix at Dallas Brooks Park while State 4 outfit Seaford recorded a 2-0 victory away to State 3 opponent Upfield.
Isaac Harrison’s toe-poke past the advancing Upfield keeper opened the scoring in the 17th minute.
Dylan Waugh missed a penalty in the 44th minute but made amends shortly after when Conor Mcfall’s through ball set up a one-on-one and Waugh converted to give the visitors a two-goal buffer which they maintained in the second half despite Upfield’s pressure.
Skye United went down 2-1 to Fawkner after extra time in their cup clash at Lawton Park last weekend.
Two penalties in normal time, one to Fawkner in the first half and a second-half conversion from Skye striker Mikey Turner sent the contest into an extended 30-minute period.
Fawkner’s winner came in the first half of extra time.
Last weekend’s friendly results: Endeavour Hills Fire 0 Chelsea 1 (Maksym Cherchukan); Knox Utd 3 Somerville Eagles 2 (Jarryd McMinimee, Jason Tiso); Mount Martha 3 (Bailey Netzler, own goal, Alex Giordano) Mount Eliza 1.
In other news Frankston Pines’ Fijian international striker Tito Vodawaqa has been nominated for his country’s 2019 Player of the Season award.
Vodawaqa is one of three nominations for the prestigious award and is expected to make a major impact in State 3 this season.
Here are the local senior squads for 2020 with the previous club of new signings in brackets:
GOALKEEPERS: Matthew Self, Josh Mravljak. DEFENDERS: Noah Berends, Dylan Guedes, Peter Dimopoulos, Adrian Pace, Blake Rosenberg, Thomas Lonsing (Dandenong Thunder), Rory Carmichael. MIDFIELDERS: Keiran Hughes, Sam Timuska-Carr, Ryan Maokhamphiou, James Macnab. FORWARDS: Anthony Segavac (Berwick City), Ben Garside Weinert, Connor Guyett.
GOALKEEPERS: James Foster, Johan Feld (White Star Dandenong), Pat Bretherton (Seaford Utd). DEFENDERS: Izaak Barr, Chris Bowen, Dan Disseldorp, Mitchell Cohen, Joe Iline, Matt McDermott, Liam Duff (Seaford Utd), Alex Campbell, Simon Riam (Sandown Lions). MIDFIELDERS: Lewis Gibson, Niko Juric, Luke Grant (Mornington), Harper Bennell (Noosa Lions, Queensland). FORWARDS: Nathan Yole, Charlie O’Connell (Mornington), Nat Daher, Lawrence Komba, Jordan Ferdinands, Davidson Alliieu.
GOALKEEPERS: Rhys Davies, Tom Carter, Calum McLauchlan (Knox United). DEFENDERS: Luke D’Alessandro (VC), Tom Flavelle, Chris Neumann, Sam Dunn (Elmhurst Bluejays, USA), Josh Torossian (Oakleigh Cannons). MIDFIELDERS: Connor Scott, Max Timuska-Carr, Nate Giabardo, Nathan Boccari (Beaumaris), Taylor Davison, Burak Vurda, Ryan Scott. FORWARDS: Piers Brelsford (Yarra Jets), Will Ong (Ringwood City), Daniel Vella, Tom Wood, Vinnie Van Dyk, Adrian Lotca (Rowville Eagles), Abdul Mohamad (Old Scotch), Kieren Harbis, Maksym Cherchukan.
GOALKEEPERS: Aeseli Batikasa (Labassa, Fiji) Max Sorensen, Jarrod Nardino, DEFENDERS: Penni Tuigulagula (Nadi, Fiji), Daniel Mota, Cedric Benza, Christian Malgioglio, Kevin Brown, Connor McAndrews, Callum Richardson (Somerville Eagles), Franco Vanni (Knox City), Kiaren Keith (Langwarrin). MIDFIELDERS: Savenaca Baledrokadroka (Rewa, Fiji), Joe O’Connor, Josh Simmons (Seaford Utd), Alex Bevacqua, Ryan Barret (Mazenod). FORWARDS: CJ Hodgson, Cole Ryan (Casey Comets), Tito Vodawaqa (Nadi, Fiji), Lachlan McMinimee, Hamraz Zenoozi (Langwarrin), Alex Roberts (Brandon Park).
GOALKEEPERS: James Burgess (Springvale White Eagles), Colby Jones. DEFENDERS: Jamie Cumming, Luke Burgess, Alex van Heerwaarden, Brandon Jansz, Jaiden Madafferi, Luke Goulding, Boris Ovcin, Reese Cox (Canterbury Utd, NZ). MIDFIELDERS: Callum Goulding, Wayne Wallace, Jordan Avraham (Peninsula Strikers). FORWARDS: Damir Stoilovic ,John Maclean (Moreland Zebras), George Howard (Hume City), Delarno Pharoe (Box Hill Utd), Tom Youngs (Murray Utd), Sam Orritt (Mornington).
GOALKEEPERS: Taylor Davidson. DEFENDERS: Joshua Heaton (Darlington, England), Reece Caldicourt (Melbourne Victory), Steve Elliott (Doveton), Lachlan Hogben (Eltham Redbacks), Andy McIntyre, Andrew Goff, Tim Millar (Langwarrin). MIDFIELDERS: Craig Smart, Sam Scott, Kane Bentley, Dejan Radojicic (Casey Comets), Kyron Kerr, Ethan Goulding (Melbourne City), Dylan Fairclough. FORWARDS: Josh Hine, Wayne Gordon (Doveton), Matt Harrington (Peninsula Strikers), Zach Hutchison (Goulburn Valley Suns), Alessio Izzo (Grottaglie Calcio, Italy).
GOALKEEPERS: Alex Davies (Mornington), Alex Klaver (Peninsula Strikers). DEFENDERS: Adam Steele (Ashburton), Charley Hunt (Mornington), Harry Aylett, Howie Anderson (Langwarrin), Jack Ecuyer (Mornington), Jannes Kalkbrenner. MIDFIELDERS: Alex Giordana, Benny Edwards, Chaz Netzler (Mornington), Darragh Fitzsimons, David Oswald (Middle Park), Ethan Sanderson, Finley Smith (Mornington), Josh Smith (Mornington), Seb Siegl. FORWARDS: Archie Thomas, Bailey Netzler (Langwarrin), Connor Mooney, Tom Brewster (Mornington).
GOALKEEPERS: Robbie Acs (Mazenod), Connor Phillips. DEFENDERS: Calvin Delaney, Danny Black, Darcy Purcell, George Whiteoak (Mazenod), Lochie Goldfinch, Laban Stringer (Knox City), Michael Nugent, Samuel Luxford, Tuách Ter, Tom Hawkins (Dingley Stars). MIDFIELD: Alex Whyte, Callum Bradbury, Daniel Brooks, Junior Mpota, Jonny Guthrie, Nick Simmons (Frankston Pines). FORWARDS: Aaran Currie (Beaumaris), Alex Mooy (Blacktown Spartans, NSW), Ben Doree (East Bentleigh), Dakota Mcallan (Beaumaris), Jai Power, Michael Nobbs (East Bentleigh), Shane Tagliaferro (Doveton), Jason Bradbury (Sunshine Coast Fire, Queensland), Julian Malander.
GOALKEEPERS: Hayden Hicks. DEFENDERS: Callum Norton, Stef Papaluca, Beau Sharpe, Chris Hatzikonstantinos, Eric Manhanong (Somerville Eagles), Owen McDougall, Petros Kourounis. MIDFIELDERS: Michael Durrance, Cory Osorio, Ryan McKay (Meadow Park), Ben Gamble, David Galllimore. FORWARDS: Blake Hicks, Mark Pagliarulo (Somerville Eagles).
GOALKEEPERS: Ryan Ramsden (Magpies Crusaders, Queensland), Justin Holland (North Sutherland Rockets, NSW), Mory Hassan (Melrose FC, NSW). DEFENDERS: Tristan Stass, Matthias Schwellinger, Jeremy Schwellinger, Aisake Rasalato, Dean Snoxell, Adam Martin. MIDFIELDERS: Scott Webster (Doveton), Tom Hogan (Mornington), Kevin Derry, Isaac Harrison, Kane Ireson, Gary Davidson (Lyndale Utd), Conor McFall. FORWARDS: Dylan Waugh, Mitch Hawkins (Hampton Park), Matt Morris-Thomas, Mitch Lander.
GOALKEEPERS: Jonathon Crook, Callum Hope. DEFENDERS: Johnny Andrinopoulos, Daniel Walsh, Gerard Lawler, Sajnesh Sugrim, Michael Rovinson (Endeavour United), Billy Painting, Naveed Hashimi (Afghan All Star, MCSA). MIDFIELDERS: Mark O’Connor, Harrison Michaelis, Marcus Anasatasiou, Marcus Collier, Alex Rojas, Jason Nowakowski, Mohammad Baqir Sultani (Heatherton Utd), Joey Bucello (Endeavour Utd). FORWARDS: Daniel Attard, Mitch Blake, Travis Ernsdoerfer (Frankston Pines), Michael Turner, Reily Saffin (Mornington), Logan Magri (Casey Comets).
GOALKEEPERS: Nathan Brown, Cameron Parsons, Latham Horvath. DEFENDERS: Samuel Beadle, Stephen Curd, Jarryd Lymer, James McKenzie, Tapiwa Muduwa (Seaford United), Ashley Scholes. MIDFIELDERS: Michael Clark, Andrew Cook (Seaford United), Damian Finnegan, Roneel Kumar (Elwood City), Bjorn Kutschera, Jarryd McMinimee. FORWARDS: Nathan Grimshaw, Jordan Lunt, Ben Meiklem, Chris Stannett (unattached), Jason Tiso (Frankston Pines), Jack Wyer (Baxter), Andrew Yeo (Bunyip District).
As we went to press Football Victoria was expected to make an announcement regarding the upcoming season and its response to the coronavirus pandemic so please check relevant social media.
As things stand here are this weekend’s round one league games:
FRIDAY 8.30pm: Frankston Pines v Brighton (Monterey Reserve), Chelsea v FC Noble Hurricanes (Edithvale Recreation Reserve).
SATURDAY 3pm: Langwarrin v Manningham Utd Blues (Lawton Park), South Springvale v Mornington (Warner Reserve), Mooroolbark v Peninsula Strikers (Esther Park Reserve), Baxter v Dandenong South (Baxter Park), Seaford Utd v Endeavour Utd (North Seaford Reserve), Mount Martha v White Star Dandenong (Civic Reserve), Knox Utd v Aspendale Stingrays (Park Ridge Reserve), South East Utd v Rosebud (WJ Turner Reserve).
SUNDAY 5pm: North Caulfield v Skye Utd (Knox Regional Football Centre).
First published in the Mornington News – 17 March 2020