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Match Day Thread: Melbourne v. West Coast


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Honestly, I have to say that this was a pretty worrying game for us. It's not that we lost, but the way we lost that is a concern. Once again we knew coming in that our forwards can't kick, and as we flew out of the blocks to take the lead with a handful of points at the start this was again shown to be true. But the big concerns were in the middle and the back.

We actually looked very good at a lot of the stoppages. I think we probably won the clearances which is not easy to do against WC. However, far too often once we had the ball we gave it straight back to them and were killed on the rebound. Basic skill errors, like a player under zero pressure failing to hit an unmarked man with a handpass and instead putting it into the hands of an opponent, happened with depressing regularity.

The there's the great and glaring hole in our defense, that of course being the small defender. Sadly, we don't seem to have anyone who fills this role. We have Bennell and Straus, both of whom are great at running out of the 50 and attacking the ball, but sadly neither of them seem to understand that they also need to shut down their opponent when the opposition has the ball. Cheney does understand this, but he isn't as good when it comes to rebounding, and so is less favoured in the role. It killed me today to see the number of times that Mark LeCras was left unmarked in the pocket. Had he had his kicking boots on the margin would have been far worse. I can not even begin to understand how a guy who kicked 50+ goals from the pocket last year didn't have an opponent.

Still, for all this, there were a couple of glimmers of hope. I'm probably going to be alone in saying that Stef Martin showed us something today. He presented very well early, and pulled off a couple of great moves. It's just sad that he still can't kick, but in our forward line that just makes him par for the course. Green of course was great all day. Kicked a couple of goals, made contests where WC should have been away clear. Jamar stood up well and took a couple of great pack marks as well. I'm also liking Bail more and more. He's never going to be an A grade star, but I think he'll find his way into the first 22 quite happily this year.

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hmmmmm.... i headed down and got to the game at quarter time. Wasn't expecting much, so wasn't overly dissapointed. Main issue I saw was a general lack of game plan. When the players got the ball they had no idea where to go, ending in a lot of messy handball chains and going backwards. In comparison, I think our skills were generally better than west coast often, but they knew a heck of a lot more about how to use it and where to run to. I liked Strauss, Bennell, Green, Mcdonald and Jamar, and the occasional clearance work from trengove. Long way to go.

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Today as soon as we hit the front in the 3rd Q Wet Coke just Bang 3-4 in a row quickly....game over.

Does this team switch off as soon as we lead a game??-it's very concerning-and no wonder we are not rated by anyone outside the club as we do not deserve to be right now.

Wasnt it the last 7 out of 8? unsure.gif

Nice assessment..

Sylvia broken jaw(s). Link

Unbelievable.

We ARE f*cking jinxed.. Im convinced.

Disgusting in every sense that we could HOST a game in the middle of nowhere, to a lowly (as Western Demon suggested, WCE are shite - Im in WA too and I'll back that statement) interstate team such as WCE and get f*cking trounced. What a joke.

Absolutely no excuses.. and our next game Rd.1 v Hawks (think rd.1 2008) will be an embarassment, despite their injuries.

Brace yourself.

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Daniher started to rebuild and we keep rebuilding with Bailey, Im so sick of it, I love the dees and stick up for them contantly, but when will we show something? I am a realist and know it takes time but the best teams show something every 2nd time they step out.

We are really lacking that winning feeling, That toughness and the killer instinct. With Stynes at the helm and sponsers willing to get on if this group of players dont step up we are stuffed.

I want to see Bailey get [censored] off, he is a great speaker but show some signs that it hurts and theat you feel under pressure. Melbourne players are far too confortable in their position in the club, we need to be ruthless, if you dont cut it then off you go.

Dont get me wrong, I bleed red and blue and so do my young family, we have been members for as long as I remember, we love the dees but lets get serious. Its time to show something after 4 years of not a thing.

Well put. I know that it is true but I am so sick of "Give it time" and "2 - 3 years" That crap is breeding a team that have a mindset of 'It is ok, we didn't win but we tried hard and we will be good one day.'Just so frustrating to watch every f'ing week. I serioiusly cannot think of a team that bottomed out and were as dissapointing as this for this long. But that's ok, give Bailey a new contract because we are going in the right direction. Which bloody direction are we pointing in.

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Wasnt it the last 7 out of 8? unsure.gif

Nice assessment..

Yes it probably was 7-8 but i switched off mentally-i refuse to let the MFC depress me anymore.

Our biggest problem is switching off when we hit the lead, or it could be the opposition just saying "ok enough of this lets kill" and we fall over.

God this club got F...up about 3-4 years ago. Even our senior players have lost the ability to win.

Dam these two new clubs pillaging all the talent-we need it bad.

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So I went and watched today, here's my team based on what I saw, my thoughts are intertwined.

FB: Garland Frawley MacDonald

HB: Bruce Rivers Bennell/Strauss

C: Trengove Moloney Scully

HF: Davey Bate Green

FF: Petterd Miller Maric

Foll: Jamar McDonald Grimes

Int: Spencer McKenzie Jones Bail

Sylvia was obviously injured and if its the jaw then he's gone.

Backline: Warnock is not up to it. He's slow, he switches off and he's halting the development of other defenders. Frawley (who was poor) can take the big boys and I'd rather play Col Garland or if he's not right Cheney. We missed Rivers and MacDonald's experience and calm skills today. Bruce also didn't seem to play his usual 100% game time. Take your pick of Bennell or Struass and I like Bail for some unknown reason. Cheney and McNamara are not quite there yet.

Midfield: Aaron Davey plays like he's just signed a 4 year deal. Pull your bloody head out Davey. Jones, Moloney, McDonald will always be serviceable but never be Daniel Kerr. Grimes needs to be the hero of this sorry lot. McKenzie, Scully and Trengove may as hell have first go ahead of Dunn. We need multiple Brad Greens

Forward: Petterd is our best forward at the moment. Miller our second best. Bate should be better for the effort. I liked Maric first quarter then he did nothing, but as they wont play Dunn forward and Danny Hughes is a VFL level spud who can't handball we may as well play Maric. Stef Martin doesn't deserve to be on an AFL list. He can't read the play as a defender - he gets can't ball watching, and I'm surprised he didn't melt in the sun he is that soft and useless as a forward. As a ruckman he's not the worst - but I'd rather Spencer.

Rucks: Jamar and Spencer get the go ahead as we have no other options. Both will need to play time forward.

Finally when we can win it out of the middle (which requires Jamar and Junior), when we have strong forward pressure and when we back ourselves, surprisingly, we aren't that bad.

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What A Disappointment

The umpiring in this game was some of the most deplorable examples of the game ever. They were pathetic

We were trounced by a harder running more committed side after mid way throught the 3rd quarter we capitulated.

There were some encouraging passages of play for MFC but they were few and far between.

Out of defence we would easily rank the worst side in the AFL.

There is absolutely no set up or structure. Our players are stationary and look like their zoning their own forward

50 when they should be leading up to the person with the ball. Infact I think we zone better in our back 50 than we

do in our forward 50.

Jeez Nick Natinui is an impressive player umpires are already protecting him though and he got alot of cheap frees.

I had west coast and fremantle in bottom 4 we didn't come close to either bad pre season for the dees.

Hope Sylvia makes a quick recovery we are so unlucky bring round 1

Edited by Diablo Deemon
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Honestly, I have to say that this was a pretty worrying game for us. It's not that we lost, but the way we lost that is a concern. Once again we knew coming in that our forwards can't kick, and as we flew out of the blocks to take the lead with a handful of points at the start this was again shown to be true. But the big concerns were in the middle and the back.

We actually looked very good at a lot of the stoppages. I think we probably won the clearances which is not easy to do against WC. However, far too often once we had the ball we gave it straight back to them and were killed on the rebound. Basic skill errors, like a player under zero pressure failing to hit an unmarked man with a handpass and instead putting it into the hands of an opponent, happened with depressing regularity.

The there's the great and glaring hole in our defense, that of course being the small defender. Sadly, we don't seem to have anyone who fills this role. We have Bennell and Straus, both of whom are great at running out of the 50 and attacking the ball, but sadly neither of them seem to understand that they also need to shut down their opponent when the opposition has the ball. Cheney does understand this, but he isn't as good when it comes to rebounding, and so is less favoured in the role. It killed me today to see the number of times that Mark LeCras was left unmarked in the pocket. Had he had his kicking boots on the margin would have been far worse. I can not even begin to understand how a guy who kicked 50+ goals from the pocket last year didn't have an opponent.

Still, for all this, there were a couple of glimmers of hope. I'm probably going to be alone in saying that Stef Martin showed us something today. He presented very well early, and pulled off a couple of great moves. It's just sad that he still can't kick, but in our forward line that just makes him par for the course. Green of course was great all day. Kicked a couple of goals, made contests where WC should have been away clear. Jamar stood up well and took a couple of great pack marks as well. I'm also liking Bail more and more. He's never going to be an A grade star, but I think he'll find his way into the first 22 quite happily this year.

Some good points you make and yours is the only post I have read so I may repeat what others have already covered. Posiives first,I agree our stoppage work is markedly improved on last year, secondly I am amazed with that forward set up we conjured as many scoring shots as we did. The key issues though s aside for me are three fold. When will we work out a proper kick out structure that flows quickly and is not just trying to pick out stationary targets. This area of our game has not improved in 3 years. Secondly,run and carry requires players to first run and then carry. The idea is that players give and spread. Gve does not mean to someone 2 metres away and spread does not mean you stop for a rest once you hand off. Thirdly I dont care how bad our forwardline is choose two players and tell them regardless where there player runs they are to plant themseves inside 50m and stay there. The amount of times we look up and there is no one is ridiculous. Bate and Petterd tried this with some success in the last qtr.

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What A Disappointment

The umpiring in this game was some of the most deplorable examples of the game ever. They were pathetic

We were trounced by a harder running more committed side after mid way throught the 3rd quarter we capitulated.

There were some encouraging passages of play for MFC but they were few and far between.

Out of defence we would easily rank the worst side in the AFL.

There is absolutely no set up or structure. Our players are stationary and look like their zoning their own forward

50 when they should be leading up to the person with the ball. Infact I think we zone better in our back 50 than we

do in our forward 50.

Jeez Nick Natinui is an impressive player umpires are already protecting him though and he got alot of cheap frees.

I had west coast and fremantle in bottom 4 we didn't come close to either bad pre season for the dees.

Hope Sylvia makes a quick recovery we are so unlucky bring round 1

This is going to be one depressing season. The lack of game plan has me stumped. Why did we give Bailey a contract extension. Surely someone at the club can see that Bailey is really struggling as a senior coach.

We might have young talented list but what is the point if our coaches cannot set out a simple game plan that the players can use.

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bailey still continues to get the forwards to push up and when the dees get a run on play they have no one to kick to

melbourne play a much better game when its a running game and they cant do that because they have to wait for the forwards to run back and gives the backs a chance to man up on our boys

it just isnt working!!!!

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Stuff it,we don't need a week off next week,let's play the Tigers!

On second thoughts,a loss to them would destroy the last drop of confidence we currently have.

We are seriously looking at bottom 2 this year.

Maybe even bottom one!

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A game plan requires players with certain abilitys to carry out that plan.

If the players dont have those skills, then you use a different game plan.

You change your gameplan to suit your playing list.

Why do we seem to be trying to fit the players into the gameplan.

When the players attain the skills, then you adjust your gameplan.

Isn't this what a coaches job is? To create a gameplan to suit his team?

Maybe i'm just angry after another crap day. sorry.

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We missed Rivers and MacDonald's experience and calm skills today. Bruce also didn't seem to play his usual 100% game time. Take your pick of Bennell or Struass and I like Bail for some unknown reason. Cheney and McNamara are not quite there yet.

According to the afl site he was one of our better players today.

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My two cents after today's game...

Matthew Bate is not at AFL standard. Melbourne supporters are completely clueless when they say he is a star forward and no I am not basing this on todays performance alone..

Martin and Spencer are not at AFL standard and we will struggle big time in the ruck this year with Jamar being our only decent ruckmen...

Bruce after all his experience still misses targets by hand and by foot. He loves handballing hospital balls to players that have a good chance of being seriously injured..

I was impressed with some of our youngsters at times today. Bennell, Strauss, Scully and Trengove. Still very small and slight compared to the Westcoast players..

We have no forwardline....

Martin is not the answer....

I am seriously worried about our injuries.

We are still a two or three years off becoming big improvers and man am I sick of the ridiculous hopes and thoughts of so many posters on this site.

Is there anyone who actually thinks we are as bad as we are? It's all well and good drawing the positives but seriously we need the negatives so we know and

understand what needs to be done !!!

We still have so much dead wood. In a couple of years when our young draft picks have had a few seasons, we will be heading in the right direction but at the

moment while they are young we have to play these third to fourth year players that are really no good. That is the simple truth of where we are.

We have far too many biased supporters that really give nothing except excitement to more biased supporters on this site.

You may have some good points in you post but you lost me at mattew bate is not afl standard please, he aint the messiah but to say he isn't afl standard is just wrong

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Just got back from the game.

- Miller our only really lead up forward.

We are in deep trouble...

I saw no evidence of a game plan.

The one game I've seen this year (v Freo) was the same, no obvious game plan. It's pretty much shades of 2008. Bailey is definitely a good teaching coach, the first & second year players will develop well under him. Worry is, learning a winning culture is also important for young players. Having great skills but absolutely no confidence or idea of how to win (& win well by burying an opposition) isn't great.

I hope Bailey's got a few tricks up his sleeve re the game plan. Because with no forward line, we'll not only lose but get the stuffing belted out of us too often I fear.

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My two cents after today's game...

Matthew Bate is not at AFL standard. Melbourne supporters are completely clueless when they say he is a star forward and no I am not basing this on todays performance alone..

We selected 3 senior players today who were underdone due to injury.

Matthew Bate has not played in any of the NAB cup or Intra club games. He has been hampered by injury since Christmas and finally got some game time last week with Casey Scorpions. I have also been critical of Bate in the past, but i was just happy to see him on the park today. He is not a lead-and-mark forward like Reiwoldt, but he can still be a very dangerous beast on the forward line. I would not use today's match to assess his value.

Aaron Davey has also struggled since Christmas with leg soreness and only played 1/2 a game at Freo.

Cam Bruce was looking good in January but has also missed every NAB and intra club match. He played in defence and was loose at times on Hansen, but he kept trying.

Yes we played badly today. We seem to lack effective tactics at the kickouts and planting the ball into the forward line , but i was more disappointed after the freo match. I wasn't expecting a lot today. We were missing Rivers and Joel McDonald in defence; Grimes was rested; we'd lost more guys with injuries; and the wiggles had a near full strength team.

So before we crucify the team, just remember that we played badly for the whole match, yet despite our poor decision making and bad disposal and lack of system, we were still leading the wiggles in the 3rd quarter. So maybe we weren't doing that badly.

The Wiggles seemed to create space and hit targets. Twice in the 2nd quarter they moved the ball from the kickout to inside their 50 without a demon touching the ball. I reckon we got in front because the team didn't stop trying. Unfortunately within 15 seconds of the bounce (when we took the lead in the 3rd) they scored a goal - the first of 6 in a row. We had one of those horrible moments like last year where we are completely lost for a quarter or more.

We seem to lose confidence. Dunn runs into an open goal and tries to dribble it thru from 35 metres out. Scully misses a set shot at goal and it starts a sequence of points. i don't know how to turn this around, but telling everyone the players are crap is not going to help.

We find it very difficult to clear the ball out of the backline. Our best option today was getting Strauss to kick to himself, then bomb it to a contest near the boundary line. At least this didn't result in too many goals from turnovers, but there must be a better way.

I also wonder why our forwards gather in a huddle at the bounce. We get the ball out of the centre and bomb it to the huddle. Dumb stuff. The wiggles placed their full forward in the square and spread the other forwards across the half forward line, giving them more room to move.

Sylvia was a big loss today. We should get back Grimes and Joel Mac for the Hawthorn match, but i have heard that Rivers may be struggling with fitness. Bate, Davey and Bruce should be better for the run. I hope so. This was a tough day at the office.

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This continulal bashing of Baileys game plan is really ignorant of the actual facts

You cannot expect to win games of football with players who consistantly give the opposition the football

This is poor execution of a skill by hand or foot and in some cases caused by the pressure the opposing team

puts on you OR making the wrong decision which in most players minds is the SECOND thing they think of

The FIRST decision is often the best option and with the pace of todays game is often the most effective

We see it every week irrespective of WHO is playing

The Top teams do it far less than we do

There was plenty of it in tonights NAB CUP Grand Final if you were watching

Bailey and the Football Department have adressed these problems by drafting players who can execute properly

Dont expect it to happen overnight but given GAMETIME you will see the cream coming to the top

Bailey has CONSISTANTLY explained this

Far too many impatient and unrealistic posters expecting miracles from kids

You are comparing a kid playing in a good team versus a poor team

Would Rioli be as effective at the Demons than Hawthorn ?

Would Cooney have won the brownlow at the Demons ?

I say NO to both and thats what most negative posters are yet to comprehend

We are 2 years away

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We selected 3 senior players today who were underdone due to injury.

Matthew Bate has not played in any of the NAB cup or Intra club games. He has been hampered by injury since Christmas and finally got some game time last week with Casey Scorpions. I have also been critical of Bate in the past, but i was just happy to see him on the park today. He is not a lead-and-mark forward like Reiwoldt, but he can still be a very dangerous beast on the forward line. I would not use today's match to assess his value.

Aaron Davey has also struggled since Christmas with leg soreness and only played 1/2 a game at Freo.

Cam Bruce was looking good in January but has also missed every NAB and intra club match. He played in defence and was loose at times on Hansen, but he kept trying.

Yes we played badly today. We seem to lack effective tactics at the kickouts and planting the ball into the forward line , but i was more disappointed after the freo match. I wasn't expecting a lot today. We were missing Rivers and Joel McDonald in defence; Grimes was rested; we'd lost more guys with injuries; and the wiggles had a near full strength team.

So before we crucify the team, just remember that we played badly for the whole match, yet despite our poor decision making and bad disposal and lack of system, we were still leading the wiggles in the 3rd quarter. So maybe we weren't doing that badly.

The Wiggles seemed to create space and hit targets. Twice in the 2nd quarter they moved the ball from the kickout to inside their 50 without a demon touching the ball. I reckon we got in front because the team didn't stop trying. Unfortunately within 15 seconds of the bounce (when we took the lead in the 3rd) they scored a goal - the first of 6 in a row. We had one of those horrible moments like last year where we are completely lost for a quarter or more.

We seem to lose confidence. Dunn runs into an open goal and tries to dribble it thru from 35 metres out. Scully misses a set shot at goal and it starts a sequence of points. i don't know how to turn this around, but telling everyone the players are crap is not going to help.

We find it very difficult to clear the ball out of the backline. Our best option today was getting Strauss to kick to himself, then bomb it to a contest near the boundary line. At least this didn't result in too many goals from turnovers, but there must be a better way.

I also wonder why our forwards gather in a huddle at the bounce. We get the ball out of the centre and bomb it to the huddle. Dumb stuff. The wiggles placed their full forward in the square and spread the other forwards across the half forward line, giving them more room to move.

Sylvia was a big loss today. We should get back Grimes and Joel Mac for the Hawthorn match, but i have heard that Rivers may be struggling with fitness. Bate, Davey and Bruce should be better for the run. I hope so. This was a tough day at the office.

Thank the lord (or DDDDC) some reason in the hysteria...

Melbourne supporters, and these 5 pages, are painful.

I thought there was alot of good today except for the 3rd quarter lapse.

Go figure...

We're a young, bottom four side that will blossom in the future.

Besides Hughes, there is no-one in the side today that won't be a good AFL footy player with more experience and game time with their teammates.

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This continulal bashing of Baileys game plan is really ignorant of the actual facts

You cannot expect to win games of football with players who consistantly give the opposition the football

This is poor execution of a skill by hand or foot and in some cases caused by the pressure the opposing team

puts on you OR making the wrong decision which in most players minds is the SECOND thing they think of

The FIRST decision is often the best option and with the pace of todays game is often the most effective

We see it every week irrespective of WHO is playing

The Top teams do it far less than we do

There was plenty of it in tonights NAB CUP Grand Final if you were watching

Bailey and the Football Department have adressed these problems by drafting players who can execute properly

Dont expect it to happen overnight but given GAMETIME you will see the cream coming to the top

Bailey has CONSISTANTLY explained this

Far too many impatient and unrealistic posters expecting miracles from kids

You are comparing a kid playing in a good team versus a poor team

Would Rioli be as effective at the Demons than Hawthorn ?

Would Cooney have won the brownlow at the Demons ?

I say NO to both and thats what most negative posters are yet to comprehend

We are 2 years away

Again, more reason, less bloody hysteria.

Onya Swampy - great post.

Chicken Little rides again on this forum.

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This continulal bashing of Baileys game plan is really ignorant of the actual facts

You cannot expect to win games of football with players who consistantly give the opposition the football

This is poor execution of a skill by hand or foot and in some cases caused by the pressure the opposing team

puts on you OR making the wrong decision which in most players minds is the SECOND thing they think of

The FIRST decision is often the best option and with the pace of todays game is often the most effective

We see it every week irrespective of WHO is playing

The Top teams do it far less than we do

There was plenty of it in tonights NAB CUP Grand Final if you were watching

Bailey and the Football Department have adressed these problems by drafting players who can execute properly

Dont expect it to happen overnight but given GAMETIME you will see the cream coming to the top

Bailey has CONSISTANTLY explained this

Far too many impatient and unrealistic posters expecting miracles from kids

You are comparing a kid playing in a good team versus a poor team

Would Rioli be as effective at the Demons than Hawthorn ?

Would Cooney have won the brownlow at the Demons ?

I say NO to both and thats what most negative posters are yet to comprehend

We are 2 years away

Finally a voice of reason - thank you Swampy

The Dees will be very very strong in a couple of years and we are laying down good foundations for our future.

This is not an instant cup of soup exercise, add water and they will grow after a good stir

for one minute. Give the kids time and enjoy the ride with them.

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    REACH FOR THE STARS by George on the Outer

    It was a game of great significance for the Melbourne Football Club. A win would see them keep top spot on the ladder with one round remaining. To achieve top place in the Round for Reach when we are all inspired to “Be Like Jim” and reach for the stars was a great way of honouring one of our heroes. All the better given that it was done by way of an emphatic 41 point win against Adelaide! It is worth remembering that, but for the umpiring mistake in the previous encounter with the Crows, t

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    TICKETS PLEASE by The Oracle

    A lot of water has passed under Princes Bridge in the five years since Melbourne last met Adelaide on the MCG. The Crows were riding high at the time while the Demons were mid-table and scrambling for a win to stay in the race for the finals. The 30,000 fans who had tickets to the game were thoroughly entertained by a close, high scoring affair that ended in tears for fans of the home team. Not even an eight-goal second term could help them.   Times have changed.    In the fi

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    ELECTRIFYING by George On The Outer

    What more can they throw at the Demons of 2021? Covid restrictions, hubs, aircraft circling between airports before landing for games and now a match stopped for 30 minutes to give a flagging opponent its second wind? To date, none of those distractions has swayed the team from their winning objectives. The game against West Coast in Perth can be marked on their report card as another positive outcome after yet another test. There was much at stake for both sides.  Melbourne had t

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    LONG AGO AND FAR AWAY by Whispering Jack

    When the combatants that are due to face off on Monday night at Optus Stadium last met, it was 11 days after the World Health Organization had declared the Covid19 outbreak a global pandemic. In Australia, the first cases had just come to light, including visiting US actors Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson, the toilet paper panic was in full flight and the world was starting to reel in anticipation of impending disaster. Half an hour before this last game of the opening round was due to comme

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