Keeping the Vultures at Bay

So, the vultures are beginning to circle.

They’re not yet visible to the naked eye on the ground. The birds of prey are still a little too high in the sky to be clearly seen, but they are there.

They sniff out the beginnings of a sliding career almost from the other side of the galaxy.

They sense a feast will soon be upon them.

An inability to mention Orica-GreenEdge’s decision to include young Michael Matthews in the Aussie teams Giro lineup without mentioning the exclusion of fellow Aussie, Matthew Goss is such an example.

Obviously, it’s fantastic news that ‘Bling’ Matthews will get a guernsey at next months first Grand Tour of the year.

And there is no doubt that he deserves it.

Matthews broke GreenEdge’s European drought with a victory in the Vuelta a La Rioja and then followed up with a stage win in the Vuelta Pais Vasco (Tour of the Basque Country).

He took two stages in last year’s Vuelta, his first Grand Tour and now he will get another chance to race in a Grand Tour.

Matthews’s inclusion in the Orica GreenEdge Giro squad is also testament to the team’s earlier statements that they will select their sprinting options based on results.

The reality is, Goss just doesn’t have the results to warrant inclusion.

The Tasmanian had a so-so Aussie summer.

He didn’t finish the Aussie Road Race Championships, he went for a ride in the Tour Down Under and same again in the Herald-Sun Tour, although he did manage a second on the first stage.

Having said that though, the Aussie summer races were all about Gerrans and Orica GreenEdge had a successful summer down under.

Goss also managed a second on the third stage of Paris-Nice, although stage eight has turned out to be the beginning of a series of DNFs.

Dwars door Vlaandren and Gent Wevelgem round out the trilogy of DNFs.

But then again, the whole team had a pretty disastrous Gent Wevelgem.

In all fairness to Goss, the vultures shouldn’t be so hasty to line him up as their next meal.

But and there is a ‘but’ here. Goss does need to produce something and produce something this season.

His stellar 2011 is no longer the recent past.

In the last two years, the Tasmanian really hasn’t produced any results to really write home about.

It’s been too long since we’ve seen a winning Goss.

And as will happen to all of us, he isn’t getting any younger.

A new breed of sprinter is upon us, lead by German Marcel Kittel and co.

Goss needs to reassess his role as either a sprinter or a lead out man or something else….

This is an article I wrote in January last year about Goss.

In revisiting it, I suppose you question whether I have a bit of blind loyalty because I’m essentially still arguing that now is not the time to get the knives out.

But I do wonder for how much longer we can keep this up.

I do sincerely hope that Goss reclaims some form or transitions his career into its next phase.

Most importantly, I do hope the vultures are kept at bay.




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