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The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Anonymous User ()
Date: April 17, 2007 10:29AM

Hello fellow players and pundits,

I am interested to know who you all think had the strongest squad to ever grace the GHFA's premier league. Here are a few of the contenders:

* Epping Eastwood of the mid 90s
* St Andrews Double Double squad of 2005
* Pennant Hills in the year they did the double (2000 was it?)
* Normo of 06 (or perhaps Normo of a couple of years earlier, when they had the feared Simpson/Leonardi strikeforce?)
* Thunder of 07 (ok maybe not yet, but you never know!)


Please focus on squad depth rather than the outsanding qualities of a select few players; i.e. consider the number of players playing most weeks in Ressies that could easily cut it at the tempo of Prems. And please be honest, I really would like to know who comes out on top after you have all had your say.

Oh, and may I just add that i would be very grateful if more of you could contribute similar posts that invoke some stimulating debate for a change, rather than lowering yourselves to the usual tripe about Damo's mullet, Batts' weight/age, or Nate Gray's sexual orientation.

The Box Penetrator

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: T-Bone ()
Date: April 17, 2007 10:46AM

Yes Box Penetrator I would rather talk about my sexual orientation than my weight

Hmm, seriously, why isn't there a mention of the NERds double of 2002 where their only loss ALL year was the dubious "fake moustache" last game to the Villagers that relegated Ravens to Super league. Did the teams above go through the entire year undefeated ??

However I feel the ultimate condition would have to be winning beyond our own backyard. Is EEW of the 90's the only team to win a CofC's and a State Cup ??
Budgie, can you get out of the cafe and confirm this please ?? If so then the debate is over (I hate to admit).

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: budgie ()
Date: April 17, 2007 11:08AM

it is hard to compare teams of different era's and i will leave that to others but I can confirm that the EEW squad of the 90's was pretty impressive.

They won the Double Double as a squad I believe on more than one occasion and collected 3 of the 4 trophies many years. First grade won the League and GF on many occasions, also winning the Champion of Champions (2 or 3 times) and State Cup (2 or 3 times) - did the all 4 in the one season or least won 3 and made the final of one of the cups only to lose.. my exact memory is a little uncertain. In 94 or 95 they went to Adelaide to Represent NSW in the Australian Ametuer titles to lose on goal difference or penalties or something like that... 5 players made the Australian Ametuer squad (kinda like AFL, no one to play but they still annouce a squad). At their peak they were going undeatfeated and beating top 4 teams 6 or 7 to nil, 13-0 against WPH one year... the premiership was regularly decided with 3 or 4 games to go in an 8 team comp.

If you are talking about dominating the opposition then this was it and it lasted a long time. Back then the Champions of Champions didn't really have byes, you'd play the country in round 1, Brookvale in round 2, then St George, then Southern Districts and finally Sutherland in the final - something like that, you get my drift.

Bit scretchy on the exact details but I think you get the idea.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Anonymous User ()
Date: April 17, 2007 11:32AM

I think that's the end of it.

As much as I'm not a fan of the Tiger Train that squad have been the best ever in the GHFA in my time (1996 - present) and I came in towards the end of their reign and didn't even see their best team. None of the current teams (2000 - 2006) would have come close.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Statman ()
Date: April 17, 2007 11:33AM

The woodpeckers claim on their website that are the home of the one and only double double!

Can you definately confirm it has been done before Budgie?

The true test is going undefeated through the season and winning the final in champs of champs. Not 1 team in the current era has come close to these two.

I say it is decided. EEW 94 is the best.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: T-Bone ()
Date: April 17, 2007 12:09PM

Not that I was around GHFA then but I remember mates who played amateurs in other areas that in the 80's the YMCA were feared like EEW in the 90's. Apparently the Villagers in that era won just as many if not more than the 90's EEW. But we cannot go back too far its ridiculous. Basically its a shame that GHFA hasn't seemed to have the same statewide supremacy in this millenium.

Budgie, you can't remember because you are senile. EEW did the double double in either 93 or 94 (or both), I wasn't around but am positive.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Boronia Observer ()
Date: April 17, 2007 01:27PM

Would bet that the EEW 035 team of 2007 which consists of many of the mid 90s squad would still beat many of the Premier League teams of 2007.

All you need to do is look at the results from 2006 and you can see that they are still a force to be reckoned with.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Anonymous User ()
Date: April 17, 2007 01:27PM

In 1994, West Pennant Hills won the Reserve Grade Round Robin with a win over EE in the last game. No double double

In 1995, EE did the Double Double.

In 1996, EE completed 3 of the 4, coming in 4th in the race for the Premiership

In 1997, EE only blitzed ressies

In 1998, the club was split into Black and Gold and from there, the results become varied

From 1999 to 2005, I think it is fair to say that both West Pennant Hills and St Andrews have enjoyed co-domination except during 2002 which North Epping performed exceptionally well and only lost the 1 game.

Being a current and somewhat veteran St Andrews player, my comments with regards to the topic heading are that I have seen some excellent players come and ago from within the ranks since my time at the club - since joining in 1999 there has been a level of consistency within that has allowed us to perform in the way that we have and will most likely continue to do so in the future. While I cannot pass judgement on the EE sides of the mid 90's it is clear that they were an exceptional unit as is shown by the results they achieved. Whether or not they are comparable with current sides is something you could only know by knowing the quality of the opposition that they played against.

No doubt I'll get fined for posting this, but I think its fair to say that even when we achieved the Double Double, we never at any stage thought our squad was the best of all time or anything like that. We were merely elated at having achieved such a thing and most were aware that EE had done it at some stage in a prior season.

Makes for interesting conversation, but I doubt you'll see much response from any Woodies, past or current on this one.


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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: WPH player ()
Date: April 17, 2007 01:34PM

Yeh pretty sure it was 93 EEW did the double double. They certainly won premiership in 94 but WPH took out ressies that year. EEW again won p'ship in both grades in 95. Penno scrapped in ahead of Glad RSL and Nerds in 96. After that I think it went 97 (Glad RSL), 98 (EEW both grades), 99 (Glad RSL both grades), 00 (Penno), 01 (STA), 02 (NER), 03 (Normo), 04 (WPH) and for the sake of all the new young players in this league, 05 (STA both grades), 06 (Normo both grades)

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Big Mac ()
Date: April 17, 2007 03:48PM

I've been in and out of premier league squads since 92 witnessing some pretty strong teams in that time. I may be showing my age here, i think you can't discount the Epping YMCA squads from the 80's/early 90's. I only watched the latter stages of that squad play and what i saw they were pretty strong. I'm not suggesting that they were the best ever but they at very least worth mentioning.

Epping Eastwood in the mid 90's were almost untouchable. They had a very strong squad which demanded respect. Tough to break down, scored goals for fun and physically strong. Their one touch passing was something to admire. Other teams learned from them and in turn improved their games in the following years.

I don't think Penno from 2000 can be counted in the mix here if we are looking at depth of squads. They had one good year in first grade (1999 finished 4th, 2001 finished 6th) and their ressies finished outside the top 4. Great first grade that year, but not the strongest squad.

Fortunately i was a part of the St Andrews team of 2005 and what that squad had was a huge depth. Almost every player could have played first grade that year. The Woods have been pretty consistent since coming up to premier league, not missing out on the top 4 since gaining promotion and their ressies have been there abouts in the last few years.

It may be too early to judge Normo, as their run could have just started. They have been top 4 material for some time but one sucessful season doesn't make them the greatest squad ever.

Thats just my opinion though.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: johnny blaze ()
Date: April 17, 2007 08:56PM

Anyone that i featured in would be a good start!

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: LiamW ()
Date: April 17, 2007 10:23PM

I think I played against EEW in a trial match at DY in either 95 or 96 and they smoked us.


I played against the EEW O/35 boys in the recent 6 a side at Mac Uni and they smoked us 3-0 in the grand final.

At the end of the day the number of trophies count with the CoC holding the most weight IMO.

EEW of the mid 90s is the clear winner

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Date: July 14, 2008 06:55PM

The YMCA won a number premierships in the 1980's. I know for sure that the YMCA won premierships in 1986, 1988, 1989 and 1990. I am pretty sure they won Premierships in 1984 and 1983. They had two great sides coached by two great coaches in Des Taylor and Norm Jones. Dave Batten was coached by Norm Jones as a nine year old!

Under Norm Jones (1986-89) the YMCA won the Champions of Champions in 1986 (beating Kissing Point 1-0) and were runners up in 1988 (losing 0-2 to Greys Point). They were also runners up in the Amateur Cup in 1987 (losing to Menai Hawks 0-1). Under Des Taylor in the early 1980's I think they won a Champions of Champions and were runners up in an Amateur Cup.

It would be hard to compare the sides of 1988 to 2008 however Epping YMCA had great talent in the likes of Andy Ferris, Mark Ward, John Henley, John Bligh and Peter Simpson. They also had the first big name foreign import in "Billie" from Scotland who allegedly played professionally in the Scottish Premier.

There was some pretty stiff opposition from North Epping with Gerard McColgan up front (still to this day possibly the hardest man Epping has seen) and David Taylor at the back. The Redbacks were pretty handy in the mid-80's with Peter Roden as sweeper (they made a couple of grand finals).Meadowbank United also won a couple of premioerships in the early 1980's and had a superstar in the "Walrus".

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Lunchbox ()
Date: July 14, 2008 07:13PM

cue player piano music and flickering black and white film reel...








just kidding, i got love for the eighties

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Pa ()
Date: July 14, 2008 08:16PM

I could be wrong, and am in no way comparing Penno 2000 to the Y in the 80's and EEW early 90's, but I'm pretty sure we went through 1st grade undefeated and won the GF in 2000.
A fair effort for a one off season.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Cobbs ()
Date: July 14, 2008 10:04PM

Easily EEW mid 90s, no weakness. We nearly took the points off them a Boronia(own goal in the last minute gave them a draw) Next round we lost 9-1, we went in to the match confident. I think we just made them angry.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Old player ()
Date: July 14, 2008 10:17PM

Pa

Your almost right I think...lost one to STA in 2nd rnd Im pretty sure in 2000

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Jethro ()
Date: July 14, 2008 10:20PM

I've seen them all since the first PL season of '77.

I played for Beecroft from '77 to '87 when they had a football club. Now just wombats!

WPH won the first season and lost the C of C final to Nth Bankstown

Meadowbank Budgies came into PL in '78 and pipped Beccroft in the last game of the season to win the premiership. Budgies had very strong squads for years.

Ryde RSL and NER also had great sides in the late '70's and early '80's

I remember the McColgan brothers charging the RSL change room at LH Waud after a grand final armed only with champage bottles.

YMCA took over during the early to mid'80's. I remember them thrashing us (Beecroft) 5-0 in the 1987 GF.

Epping Eastwood in the '90's is definitely my pick.

BTW, Penno are the only club to have played every season of PL since it started.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Old player ()
Date: July 14, 2008 11:03PM

yeah, PL season started in '77 and my records are the founding clubs were:
HCC
RAV
Hornsby SC
PEN
BEE
NER
STA
WPH

Believe WPH have also been in it from the start and not sure about nerds. Hard to find a team better than EEW blacks from mid 90's

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Old boy ()
Date: July 15, 2008 08:53AM

Nerds and Peno only only 2 clubs never out of premier league, Wph in and out

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Old man ()
Date: July 15, 2008 09:06AM

what years were wph out?

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: young man. ()
Date: July 15, 2008 12:23PM

:::: * Thunder of 07 (ok maybe not yet, but you never know!) :::::


thunder of 07...not 08??

thunder? really?

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: thl ()
Date: July 15, 2008 12:31PM

mmmmm maybe 09.....maybe

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: older man ()
Date: July 15, 2008 01:07PM

82 or 3 out then straight back in the following year

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Jethro ()
Date: July 15, 2008 04:31PM

NER played first season in '77 then dropped out for a while. Same as STA who dropped out as well

Holy Cross - one or two seasons only. Beecroft grabbed all there best players

Hornsby FC went back to Kuringai comp minus McColgan who went to NER

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Muz ()
Date: July 15, 2008 05:00PM

I think some of the teams including the Y went to the Sydney Metro League in the late 70s.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: North Epping PLayer ()
Date: July 15, 2008 05:15PM

Are you sure Jethro about NERds dropping out ??
We were told they have been ever present by the committee.

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: Boz ()
Date: July 15, 2008 05:43PM

My old man used to play for the Y back then and he said something about playing in a metro league... think they won it too

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Date: July 15, 2008 05:53PM

My brother played for the Y in ressies in the 1980's. He reckons there were two YMCA premier league sides in the early 1980's

One under Des Taylor who played in the Metro League until about 1981/82. And a second who played in the Premier League.

He remembers the Y playing against Seaforth in the metro league. I remember when North Rocks played in the GHFA premier league.

McColgan did play for Hornsby as he used to regularly wear a maroon jumper with the HFC and a lion emblazoned on it!

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Re: The greatest GHFA squad ever?
Posted by: PSB ()
Date: July 15, 2008 11:12PM

There is a Metro League Championship Trophy (well there was the last time i was there) in the trophy cabinet inside the YMCA... the YMCA gym, not the club room.

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