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Great summation WYL, and this is the crux of it for me......

Things need to be re-built and we have to be patient while this is done no matter how painful it is and will continue to be.

It is way to early for any kind of judgement on either Neeld or Sanderson, and given the respective list and their talents I'm not sure you can make a definitive comparison at all.

The club made one big mistake in this rebuild, and that is it recruited the kids before the Teachers.

Any good school of learning must have the Teachers in place first...

Is it too late for some of our draft picks?

I hope not, but the job is a lot harder now...

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Guest José Mourinho

That's what I said. We had been attacking, now we're learning defense. Adelaide the other way round and it's easier for them as a result. You need to read what people write.

Maybe you should re-read what you wrote, because it wasn't clear.

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Sanderson would have come to interview and said "I've been at Geelong since 2007 and experience 2 GF victories and one defeat. Melbourne play a "Geelong" style of footy and I can take your group and build on what has been done since Bailey's appointment. It needs development but it's the same genre."

It's an interesting idea.

I had a look at rpfc's 2011 measurements - particularly contested possessions and clearances, the mainstays of Neeld's gameplan:

http://demonland.com/forums/index.php?/topic/25041-rpfcs-measurement-of-2011/page__view__findpost__p__472599

In 186 the differential was -48 and -21 and yet according to your theory we "play a "Geelong" style of footy"?

I think whoever took over as Melbourne coach needs to address these issues. It so happens that's Neeld's style requires us to address them head-on. If Sanderson had taken over he would have faced the same challenge. The questions are:

Does Neeld have anything else up his sleeve once he gets these fundamentals squared away? We should see an answer in time.

Could Sanderson have got these fundamentals sqaured away while retaining Bailey's corridor attacking based style or would he too have had to strip back to a contested style? This is the core of your argument I believe. Maybe Essendon provides a supporting case - they played an attacking corridor style under Knights and have been able to translate that succesfully under Hird-Thompson.

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In 2007, the then Gardner Board undertook a search for a new coach. They chose Bailey. Presumably during the interview process they established Bailey's football philosophy, game plan, strategies and measured those against the then "best practice".

And how did Bailey's competitive philosphies work out ? And his much maligned and criticised game plan ?

Why did the current administration abandon 4 years of work and pain and opt for a complete rebuild last year when there was an equally well credentialed coach who could have taken that previous work and developed it? The only reason I can think of is they didn't believe the Geelong game plan could stand up. To make that decision a sophisticated understanding of game plans and the future direction of the game would be critical. And guess what, there wasn't a coach on our selection panel just a couple of Board members, a footy commentator who hasn't coached and an administrator.

See my thread "Three cheers for Neale !"

If you're intent on getting political, explain to me how on earth the previous Gardner administration allowed: -

1/ Neale's regime to squeeze every last drop out of an aging list whilst topping up with NQR players looking for their Super when it was apparent after 2004-05, that our list management was up sh!t creek without a paddle and certain players were being signed on lengthy contracts at a time when it was clear a major rebuild was on the horizon.

2/ A insurmountable debt of over $5 million to come to fruition on the back of three successive finals campaigns 2004-05-06.

3/ Leaving the club in such a position that it requird a 6-8 year re-build with crippling debt, and a membership base languishing at around ~24,000.

Since then the club haven't reached the finals, languished at the bottom of the ladder, eradicated all debt, increased membership each year (50% increase since 2006/7), increased spending and expanded on FD for development of players, and established a more professional brand and run club in various areas including communication, IT and importantly facilities and assets. And managed to be in the strongest position financially the club has been in the meantime.

They've selected a coach who has the job of building the current list and adding to it - IT IS NOT A TOTAL REBUILD - as some are mentioning, the way he sees fit and to build a team and game/mindset that he believes can win a Premiership.

Give him some time.

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Despite going to great efforts to explain that this is no criticism of Neeld it seems to have been interpreted as such. It's not.

HT it's also got nothing to do with politics. It's got to do with decision making and why the club changed it's stance mid term. In 2007 and 2010 we pursued one course and in 2011 we changed.

I think that was a mistake. It's not Neelds fault, it's got nothing to do with Adelaide's list or even the names of the coaches.

Our list was being selected and trained to play a game plan. In 2011 this administration changed that midstream. It means that 4 years of player selection was on the wrong premise. For example Blease, Strauss and Bennell could well have missed our club and we could have gone for contested ball winners Shuey, Redden and Sloane. They would have suited the new game plan where the other three were selected for other reasons.

I suppose we'll now debate the example rather than the issue, but that seems to be the way of it here.

"Strategy without tactics is the slowest way to victory, tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat"

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Why when trying to directly reply to you Fan, it comes up "not allowed ..??"

Maybe, when interviewed they were swayed by Neeld in which direction the game was headed. Maybe his philosophies are different from that of Mick ? After all he has stated he has his own ideas. And because he was an assistant to Mick, everyone gets brain washed by those that spruiking he is a Mick clone, when he isn't ?!

Maybe the "panel" had more resources at their disposal other than the two board members, administrator and "commentator" who hasn't "coached" - (sounds very much like a witch hunt, doesn't it ?!)

I guess we will never know..despite what may or may not been stated publicly.

I would imagine it takes guts to change and realise where the game is headed, admit your faults in past recruiting - which I don't think they have.

Certainly the likes of Strauss and Blease have hardly strung together games and it's still early days for them. Horrific injuries for them both have stalled their development.

Edit : Now I understand the confusion on who it is I am replying to !

Edited by H_T
Confusion exists on OP'er.
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From memory it was down to Bailey & Hardwick, it's not hindsight but at the time I wanted Hardwick he played hard and from what he has shown at Richmoond he coaches the same and expects the same of his players

So we made a mistake back then & should have changed the Board first back then & then chosen people to find us a Coach for the end of that year.

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I think Cuddles raises a very good question about the decision to go with Neeld. I don't think it's fair to characterise Cuddles' view as based on an imagined conversation. It's based in large part on the facts as we know them and what we've seen from the team so far. It involves a degree of speculation but so does a lot of educated opinion about football.

Of course we need to give Neeld & co more time but if that's all we can say we may aswell shut this site down for a couple of years. I think we can say more.

The players don't run, spread and handball like they did under Bailey. This is largely the reason we are getting smashed in uncontested possessions every week. It is not to do with clearances or turnovers. The stats on this don't lie. The fact that this part of our game has been so thoroughly obliterated is a huge part of the reason we are losing and losing so badly. The coaching department must bear a large portion of the blame in my view. If the players are using handball and short kicks roughly as much as they are told to then this part of the game plan is clearly flawed. We will never kick a winning score playing this way. On the other hand, if the players are not moving the ball like they are being told it is not because they are incapable of it (becasue they did it under Bailey) but because they are confused about the game plan. It is the coaching group's job to communicate the game plan effectively and make the player's understand it. Hird & co showed what could be done in this respect over one preseason. Why should we accept anything less?

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Guest Dr Who
admit your faults in past recruiting - which I don't think they have.

How can you admit to something if thats not the problem? (Unless of-course you had Nostradamus on your drafting team) - unless you just want to hush "the noise."

Think we have clearly recognised the "game" has moved forward but not in ways so many around here want to blame. But such is life.

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Despite going to great efforts to explain that this is no criticism of Neeld it seems to have been interpreted as such. It's not.

HT it's also got nothing to do with politics. It's got to do with decision making and why the club changed it's stance mid term. In 2007 and 2010 we pursued one course and in 2011 we changed.

I think that was a mistake. It's not Neelds fault, it's got nothing to do with Adelaide's list or even the names of the coaches.

Our list was being selected and trained to play a game plan. In 2011 this administration changed that midstream. It means that 4 years of player selection was on the wrong premise. For example Blease, Strauss and Bennell could well have missed our club and we could have gone for contested ball winners Shuey, Redden and Sloane. They would have suited the new game plan where the other three were selected for other reasons.

I suppose we'll now debate the example rather than the issue, but that seems to be the way of it here.

"Strategy without tactics is the slowest way to victory, tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat"

Game-plans are changing every 6-8 weeks in the AFL. All Neeld required was an ability to win contested footy, as well as understanding that for time immemorial defence wins finals. You're over complicating the coaching selection and placing far too much emphasis on game-plan. No game-plan works when you can't get your hands on the footy..

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How can you admit to something if thats not the problem?

Which they haven't admitted. Precisely.

I've only read that the current President sometimes questions himself about recruiting.

Maybe supporters are jumping the gun and using it as a sign of acknowledgement.

Maybe the President should keep his frustrations in house.

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Game-plans are changing every 6-8 weeks in the AFL.All Neeld required was an ability to win contested footy, as well as understanding that for time immemorial defence wins finals. You're over complicating the coaching selection and placing far too much emphasis on game-plan. No game-plan works when you can't get your hands on the footy..

Exactly. And we know Bailey wasn't big on defence, zoning or pressing.

Contested ball and learning to defend as well as having the extra layer of being able to spread with a solid structure will more than likely be the hallmark of Neeld's plans, with variations for different opposition. To counteract and have variation to answer any change or evolve to any change in the game. Like you say it evolves every couple of months.

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Our list is not as bad as our current predicament leads many to believe.

Neeld is not getting the players to win at all costs at this stage. He is basically continuing the preseason training into the season. The players are currently learning Contested Ball 101. He 's toughening them up. They are weak both physically and mentally and everyone knows it He'll sort the wheat from the chaff, hopefully draft some gun mids and then we'll start to see whether he can coach or not. It's not going to be as long a road as many suggest. However I suggest you pray for a bumper snow season, I know I am!

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Our list was being selected and trained to play a game plan. In 2011 this administration changed that midstream. It means that 4 years of player selection was on the wrong premise. For example Blease, Strauss and Bennell could well have missed our club and we could have gone for contested ball winners Shuey, Redden and Sloane. They would have suited the new game plan where the other three were selected for other reasons.

I think you and Jake Niall are over-playing this card. There's no evidence that Strauss cannot win contested footy (and kick it well) he hasn't had a chance to show his wares yet. Good players are good players, Blease has run and spread attributes that will be vital if we progress beyond the basics of Neeld's defensive style - yes he'll have to learn defensive structures and win his fair share of his own ball too - Adam Cooney was pretty effective last night, hopefully that's the direction he can develop.

Bennell might be a bust because he's too small and can't win enough contested football but my understanding is that the Eagles were going to take him with the next selection, they play a contested style and recruit suitable players - sometimes it doesn't work out and he was pick 35 after all.

Maybe you can explain why the Eagles picked Tom Swift in this context? It went Blease, Shuey, Strauss, Swift but apparently we stuffed up and according to many they're geniuses?

Scully, Trengove, Gysberts, Tapscott were the other early picks and all have contested ball winning skills. I think our list is being written off prematurely - hell the Scully picks aren't even on the list yet.

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Exactly. And we know Bailey wasn't big on defence, zoning or pressing.

Contested ball and learning to defend as well as having the extra layer of being able to spread with a solid structure will more than likely be the hallmark of Neeld's plans, with variations for different opposition. To counteract and have variation to answer any change or evolve to any change in the game. Like you say it evolves every couple of months.

We don't know that about Bailey at all..

what we do know is he was flat out list building.

IMO we didn't get to see his true gameplan as his list building wasn't completed before his departure. Departure following the choked up footy fields of the flood & presses.

So in hindsight we really don't know how his gameplan would have/could have stood up...

The only glaring thing missing, was our inability to win stoppages & hard ball. We couldn't move the ball well with our fleet footed runners as the game had gone from 'Roos' Contested stoppage footy,,, to Lyons Zones,,,to the Pies, Malthouse/Neeld presses, but before the press came to pass, the AFL stepped in to regulate the Interchange Bench, reducing it to 3 + 1 sub...

So with todays slightly more Open play & corridor territory sometimes available, we don't really know how he would have adapted.....

What I know is that we shouldn't be too hasty to lose some players we have on our highlight flick list just yet, until were sure where we are heading.

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We don't know that about Bailey at all..

what we do know is he was flat out list building.

IMO we didn't get to see his true gameplan as his list building wasn't completed before his departure. Departure following the choked up footy fields of the flood & presses.

So in hindsight we really don't know how his gameplan would have/could have stood up...

The only glaring thing missing, was our inability to win stoppages & hard ball. We couldn't move the ball well with our fleet footed runners as the game had gone from 'Roos' Contested stoppage footy,,, to Lyons Zones,,,to the Pies, Malthouse/Neeld presses, but before the press came to pass, the AFL stepped in to regulate the Interchange Bench, reducing it to 3 + 1 sub...

So with todays slightly more Open play & corridor territory sometimes available, we don't really know how he would have adapted.....

What I know is that we shouldn't be too hasty to lose some players we have on our highlight flick list just yet, until were sure where we are heading.

Todd Viney was quoted (when working with Bailey) as saying "we're not worried about game plan we are just trying to build up their bodies and get games into them" or very similar words. I screamed blue murder at that and it was a classic part of the mollycoddling of our 'younger' players.

Teach em the work ethic from day 1. Young kids can do great things on the footy field but when you put no expectations about effort don't be surprised that they don't give any. FFS even our senior leaders give questionable effort most of the time.

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Game-plans are changing every 6-8 weeks in the AFL. All Neeld required was an ability to win contested footy, as well as understanding that for time immemorial defence wins finals. You're over complicating the coaching selection and placing far too much emphasis on game-plan. No game-plan works when you can't get your hands on the footy..

Game plans are refined, ours was rebuilt. Neeld said as much in his presser after the Dogs game.

“It was a really good contested brand of footy. We’re going through a stage of building a base and building blocks.

“When you’re starting to build something from scratch, people tend to analyse the tiny little things that got away, but it’s a lot bigger than that,”

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In 2007, the then Gardner Board undertook a search for a new coach. They chose Bailey. Presumably during the interview process they established Bailey's football philosophy, game plan, strategies and measured those against the then "best practice". Bailey would have outlined the type of players that were needed to implement the strategy and then undertook the rebuild of a terrible list in conjunction with Cameron (2007) and Prendergast (2008 - 2011).

In February 2010 the Stynes Board extended Bailey's contract by 12 months until the end of 2011. They had had the benefit of seeing Bailey in action for two years, had a chance to determine if his philosophies were sound and had seen how he managed the players and the other members of the club. Clearly they thought he was doing a good job and hence was extended on the back of 2 years "exposed form".

in July of 2011, some 18 months after reviewing his performance and endorsing his direction they sacked him and undertook a search for a new coach. Among others Sanderson and Neeld applied at a time where Collingwood were seen as clearly the best side in the AFL.

Sanderson would have come to interview and said "I've been at Geelong since 2007 and experience 2 GF victories and one defeat. Melbourne play a "Geelong" style of footy and I can take your group and build on what has been done since Bailey's appointment. It needs development but it's the same genre."

Neeld would have come to interview and said "I've been at Collingwood since 2008 and I was involved in the 2010 GF. Collingwood are now the benchmark of the competition and it's game plan has superseded all others. It's designed on defence, stoppages and strength. Unfortunately your recruiting and coaching for the last 4 years is contrary to this game plan and I'll have to go back to square 1, rebuild your list and completely deconstruct the game plan. It will most likely take 3 to 5 years to build a list capable of competing at the top level. The last 4 years have been a waste."

History now shows us that Geelong beat Collingwood in the 2011 GF and there game plan is being copied by most teams with the centre corridor being used much more frequently.

Why did the current administration abandon 4 years of work and pain and opt for a complete rebuild last year when there was an equally well credentialed coach who could have taken that previous work and developed it? The only reason I can think of is they didn't believe the Geelong game plan could stand up. To make that decision a sophisticated understanding of game plans and the future direction of the game would be critical. And guess what, there wasn't a coach on our selection panel just a couple of Board members, a footy commentator who hasn't coached and an administrator.

IMO Sanderson was clearly the correct choice because he would have develop and used philosophies based on Geelong and endorsed by the very people who extended Bailey contract and run our club now. Neeld was a knee jerk reaction to copy the team of the moment but which ended up failing in September and are struggling now.

Our management panicked and abandoned their 4 year strategy and we are now back to square one where we don't even measure our performance by wins (Neeld presser after Bulldogs) and a President who by his own admission has got no idea why things have gone so wrong.

Encouraging isn't it!

Clarification: This is in no way a criticism of Neeld, it is a critique of the management flip flop that has given us the laughing stock of the competition and consigned us to yet another rebuild.

Do you not forget what a pile of crap we were last season ? We were terible !! Your post suggests we up rooted everyhinh for no reason at all !! Far from the truth last year we were a basket case, in fact I can't recall wanting a football season to finish as much as I did last year. Things were re vamped for a reason as we were going no where. As much as it frustrates me that we are now crap again I can see the change and I can see its required ! We have been a joke for to long as far as I'm concerned. It's going to be a tough year but I want the dead wood weeded out ! ( I'm not going to name names but we sure have them )

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Game plans are refined, ours was rebuilt. Neeld said as much in his presser after the Dogs game.

“It was a really good contested brand of footy. We’re going through a stage of building a base and building blocks.

“When you’re starting to build something from scratch, people tend to analyse the tiny little things that got away, but it’s a lot bigger than that,”

It's a complete rebuild because Bailey's game-plan was virtually devoid of any accountability. Neeld wants run and spread too, but because the players are trying so hard to maintain structures, as well as being scared of making a mistake, the game-plan looks more doer than it is. It's a game-plan that requires a total buy in and if a player loses his structure within the jigsaw puzzle we're exposed to turnovers. In time, there'll be less and less mistakes as it becomes ingrained.

As for the list ? I like some of our youth and think that there's definite potential, but due to a dearth of quality senior players and younger players that are yet to prove themselves this is arguably the worst team I've seen Melbourne field. The sides that compete with it include 1974 and 1981. But at least those sides had some genuinely good players such as Wells, Hardeman, Flower, Healy, Alves. I agree that on potential there are some really good youngsters, but on present make-up and output this team is the pits.

Melbourne supporters have become arguably the greatest in the AFL for making excuses for their club, coaches, and players, so thankfully most will see the bright side of things.

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Todd Viney was quoted (when working with Bailey) as saying "we're not worried about game plan we are just trying to build up their bodies and get games into them" or very similar words. I screamed blue murder at that and it was a classic part of the mollycoddling of our 'younger' players.

Teach em the work ethic from day 1. Young kids can do great things on the footy field but when you put no expectations about effort don't be surprised that they don't give any. FFS even our senior leaders give questionable effort most of the time.

Must Agree JnrMac...a bunch of smart kids without the right teachers will not remain smart for long.

I am suprised & disappointed in the MFC board for letting this crucial area get to such a low point.

They should have embraced the members earlier for Cash flow in terms of the Football Department....everybody would have bought in...

As it is now we wasted the lost 4 years.

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Guest Dr Who
Melbourne supporters have become arguably the greatest in the AFL for making excuses for their club, coaches, and players, so thankfully most will see the bright side of things.

hahahaha - "excuses" would suggest something positive. But Melbourne supporters have a long history of voting with their feet. Blame would be a better description just read the negativity around here.

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hahahaha - "excuses" would suggest something positive. But Melbourne supporters have a long history of voting with their feet. Blame would be a better description just read the negativity around here.

Don't waste my time with your tripe.

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Do you not forget what a pile of crap we were last season ? We were terible !! Your post suggests we up rooted everyhinh for no reason at all !! Far from the truth last year we were a basket case, in fact I can't recall wanting a football season to finish as much as I did last year. Things were re vamped for a reason as we were going no where. As much as it frustrates me that we are now crap again I can see the change and I can see its required ! We have been a joke for to long as far as I'm concerned. It's going to be a tough year but I want the dead wood weeded out ! ( I'm not going to name names but we sure have them )

The problem is we are significantly worse now than we were last year. From what we've seen, we will be lucky to win 3 games. Our strengths as a side have mostly been taken away and replaced with nothing. We are not defending or even tackling particularly well. I suppose it comes down to whether we need to go backwards in order to go forwards. There may be a good argument that we do, but I'm yet to come across it. To become a strong contested ball side surely you don't need to compromise ball movement completely. Like Richmond, we got 8.5 wins last year, and yet many punters, posters and commentators seems to accept that what we're going through now is somehow necessary. I don't. I'm more disappointed now than I've been since 2007 (given we finished as the top Victorian team the year before I had high hopes...)

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Must Agree JnrMac...a bunch of smart kids without the right teachers will not remain smart for long.

I am suprised & disappointed in the MFC board for letting this crucial area get to such a low point.

They should have embraced the members earlier for Cash flow in terms of the Football Department....everybody would have bought in...

As it is now we wasted the lost 4 years.

Why didn't you suggest this 4 years ago. Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Just be happy that it has now occured and the club is now debt free, has spent up big on the footy dept,has new sponsers, and off the field is in a much better place.

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    BEST IN SHOW by Whispering Jack

    I am writing this knowing that the AFL has deemed that the opening round of competition will proceed but fully believing that it should not.  The world is going through cataclysmic change as a result of the overwhelming spread of the Covid-19 virus and I agree that a distraction like sport would be good for the public. However, while the physical threat to the population is bad enough, there are other  issues to be addressed including the mental health of the community and the effects on th

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    TASSIE DEVILS by Van Demon

    If you were looking for something new from the Demons that wasn’t there last year, you didn’t have to look further than the perfectly trimmed grass surface of UTAS Stadium last night as the team steamrolled the Hawks to record a comprehensive 32-point victory to complete their Marsh Community Series commitments for 2020. One new thing was the fact that for the second Marsh game in a row, the team finished full of running and they dominated the second half without the presence or the dominan

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    SOUTH OF THE BORDER by Paddy Gosch

    The Demons will go into their final Marsh Series match with a strong lineup against the Hawks in Tasmania. Both Max Gawn and Steven May, who were recovering from injuries in first Marsh Series match, have both been named. It is unclear whether Max will be on restricted minutes and will likely get breaks in the ruck with Sam Weideman and rookie Luke Jackson getting their turns in the middle. Angus Brayshaw will be getting his first taste of competitive football despite playing in last week’s

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

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