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NO REASON TO BELIEVE by Whispering Jack

There has been much criticism and even some derision since the appointment as coach of the Greater Western Sydney Giants of Kevin Sheedy. He's too old, past his use by date, a spruiker for the club, a pot-stirrer and an embarrassing joke. The critics may well be right but at least he has the respect of his players and they of him. Hence, they have a reason to believe and hence those youngsters managed to prevail in a scrappy sub standard game over the pathetic rabble that has become the Melbourne Football Club - a hotchpotch of individuals, directionless, rudderless and playing at the moment with no heart and no soul.

They don't even pretend to attempt to apply any defensive pressure any more; foolishly they were "freed up" when Mark Neeld was given his marching orders; given licence to play their own games. The result is that the tail now wags the dog - even more completely and utterly than ever before and that includes the latter stages of the Bailey era when they turned up to play when they felt like it.

That might well have been necessary after the ongoing negativity of the first half of the current season and the resultant damage to player confidence caused by Neeld's style of coaching but at the same time, we seem to have taken our eyes completely off the defensive side of our game.

More and more often, the opposition effortlessly streams out of Melbourne's forward line without any pressure being imposed whatsoever and it's like that everywhere on the ground. People bemoan our lack of a midfield but really the team is poor everywhere in terms of putting pressure on the opposition.

However, it didn't start this week with the playing group but at the selection table with some nonsensical decision-making that set the scene for the team's 37 point defeat at the hands of the hitherto winless Giants.

Firstly, the response to a heartless 20 goal defeat was to make only one compulsory change. Poor old Sam Blease deserved the chop for his inept display at Etihad but didn't he have any mates? Obviously not because it was be kind to Aaron Davey week after his embarrassing effort last week and a few others should have gone as well. It was also a time to ignore those youngsters pushing hard for a game at Casey who might have relished having a crack at a young inexperienced opposition. Well, I suppose there is the Gold Coast Suns as Melbourne's around the world tour continues next week.

And then there was the decision to load up with the 200cm plus contingent against a team known for its youthful gut running which gave Collingwood a run for its money in that department for the better part of three quarters last week. That really was a stroke of genius ready to backfire - and backfire, it did.

Melbourne, at least started well, got the ball out of the middle and made repeat entries into the forward line to lead by 13 points at the 25 minute mark of the first quarter. It could have been more but for some poor kicking and decision-making when going forward but then, as easy as you like, the Giants slammed on three goals in three minutes, all of them set up by hard running out of defence finished by confidence- boosting snap shots and contrasted with Jack Fitzpatrick's miss from five metres out on the run to set the scene for the day.

Less than two hours later, the Giants were celebrating in their rooms singing the Russian national anthem and the Demons were in despair. Under siege, the team died of shame.

Words can't describe the appreciation necessary for the likes of Nathan Jones and Jack Viney for their desperation and hard-nosed attack on the ball while many of their teammates spent the afternoon sunning themselves on a pleasant mid winter day in Sydney. If there is any justice, Viney will be rewarded with a NAB Rising Star nomination. In any other team, his effort would have translated into a 30+ possession performance and universal adulation.

Other youngsters Jack Fitzpatrick and Dean Kent tried hard: both could easily have finished with four goals each had they nailed some easy shots. Cam Pedersen is much maligned but he worked tirelessly and capped his day off with an inspirational goal. Tom McDonald's game under fire against Jeremy Cameron shouldn't be underestimated. Jake Spencer toiled hard in the ruck and Mitch Clisby showed he will be a player.

There are too many players out there under some form of handicap. Jack Trengove missed the pre-season and just isn't right. His co-captain Jack Grimes missed two months in midseason. Neither are in the best condition to carry the load of leadership let alone play good football. Colin Garland has had a terrific season but he appeared to still be inconvenienced by that ankle injury. He probably should have had another week's rest but the powers that be obviously don't have any faith in Troy Davis while James Sellar lingers on the club's mystery injury list and Tom Gillies (remember him?) was named to play for the Casey twos this weekend.

Melbourne continues to give up the ball with poor turnovers caused by even poorer decision-making and I don't see much inspiration or game changing moves from the coaches box. Earlier in the season, Melbourne famously kicked 12 goals in a quarter against the same opposition. This time round, it managed the same number of goals in the entire game. Can one believe in the club's much vaunted fitness guru after that?

In short, there is no reason to believe in anything from the current set up.

The only glimmer of belief comes from the fact that 364 days earlier, the Giants' last victim was Port Adelaide in Round 19, 2012 and a year later, that club sits in the top eight with recent wins over Sydney and Collingwood under its belt. Port sacked its coach at the time. Melbourne's already done that this year so Neil Craig is safe for the next month to preside over more humiliation before the next rebuild starts under the next coach because he won't have the initials NC.

Whoever Melbourne eventually appoints as coach will need to restore the balance, clean out the deadwood and ensure that he puts the lazy culture of almost an entire decade behind the club for once and for all.

Melbourne4.3.27 5.9.39 9.12.66 12.15.87

GWS Giants 5.1.31 9.3.57 12.7.79 19.10.124

Goals

Melbourne Fitzpatrick Kent Watts 2 Byrnes Clisby Howe Pedersen Spencer Trengove

GWS Giants

Cameron Ward 4 Smith 3 Giles Whitfield Giles 2 Adams Bugg Shiel Tomlinson, Adams

Best

Melbourne N Jones Pedersen Viney Clisby M Jones Kent

GWS Giants Ward Treloar Cameron Hampton Smith Whitfield

Changes

Melbourne Nil

GWS Giants Nil

Injuries

Melbourne Nil

GWS Giants Nil

Reports

Melbourne Nil

GWS Giants Nil

Umpires Stuart Wenn Ben Ryan Jordan Bannister

Official Attendance 8,308 at Skoda Stadium.

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Last out turn the lights off.

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Scully knows how to run hard

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For all those who say we have improved under Craig - I have one thing to say.... 124 - 87.

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No words can adequately describe the shame and the anger I feel towards this club, the playing list, the board, the administration, the coaching team. I feel disgusted being a Melbourne supporter and I can no longer bring myself to live in false hope that we will ever improve. Ever be anything but a sad joke.

Only AFL support is keeping us alive right now. Perhaps mercy rules should kick in and they should pull the plug and let us die.

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Good effort from the boys today. It was a game of two halves, and in the end the better team won. Yeah nah, if we just keep pluggin' away we'll get the four points, the choccies and the bickies. But credit to the Giants. They came to play and got the better of us. Big Wattsy was good up forward, and Pedo chased the little guys all day, but just couldn't get on top of 'em.

Maybe next week. One week at a time, after all.

BANG!!!

Edited by Chook
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Can we sack 2 coaches in one year?

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No words can adequately describe the shame and the anger I feel towards this club, the playing list, the board, the administration, the coaching team. I feel disgusted being a Melbourne supporter and I can no longer bring myself to live in false hope that we will ever improve. Ever be anything but a sad joke.

Only AFL support is keeping us alive right now. Perhaps mercy rules should kick in and they should pull the plug and let us die.

Calm your farm. The club has still got a long way to recover from Neeld's mistakes, they're not going to be magically undone over night. A la fitness, leaders, zoning, etc.

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CAN SOMEONE TELL ME WHY NATHAN JONES ISN'T OUR CAPTAIN?

I can't actually comprehend it.
I'm not sure what boxes you had to "check off" on Neeld's Captaincy check-list, but on my check list:

guts, loyalty, determination, honour, pride, training dedication, consistency etc.

He ticks ALL of them and more.

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We literally need a miracle to turn this stinking ship around, and I don't believe in miracles.

Meanwhile the Tigers who were seen to be at a similar development path as us just a few years ago are up on the Hawks by 36. What a shitty day!

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No words can adequately describe the shame and the anger I feel towards this club, the playing list, the board, the administration, the coaching team. I feel disgusted being a Melbourne supporter and I can no longer bring myself to live in false hope that we will ever improve. Ever be anything but a sad joke.

Only AFL support is keeping us alive right now. Perhaps mercy rules should kick in and they should pull the plug and let us die.

be VERY careful what you wish for

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If we don't improve next year then I hope the club folds. All this is doing is destroying the reputation and proud history we once had. It's embarrassing and nobody deserves to go through this any longer.
I just don't understand how the players can run around and not try as hard as they can! They should all have KPI's to hit eg. 5 tackles per game, and if they don't hit this then they shouldn't get paid. If I didn't have to work get results in my job, I wouldn't be paid and I'd be fired. I don't understand how footballers are different to all the rest of us working for our money.

As a club, we are worse than Fitzroy before they folded, and we will go the same way if it doesn't turn around fast! So ashamed right now.

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I am like many on here a very very passionate member but honestly I'm not angry bitter or disappointed much anymore just loosing interest in this football club I've already lost two of my kids to other clubs and my young fella at 3 won't be far behind. That's the sad part that I can't even convince my kids there is any sort of hope

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wish we still had Scully

Wish we had Sully......shed probably give it a better go than most of our lot !!

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Tom Scully was always going to be a gun.

But he is a front runner and he has no ticker, he'd be very easy to put off his game.

We are down and out, we need players like Viney, Wines, Selwood, Martin, Nathan Jones types, Sloane.

Players who don't care who the opposition is.
Scully might look good playing against us, but he is a mentally weak person.

Trengove is a soft person, so is Toumpas.

We need ball getters, this club has really made a mess of the drafting, picking blokes like Gysberts, Cook, Strauss.

Couldn't get softer blokes if you were earmarking them yourself.

We are now paying the price for pathetic drafting, I don't even want to hear about development, we drafted blokes I wouldn't even pay to play local bush footy.

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This group is beyond anyone's saving. Trengove cant run, Sylvia wont run, Grimes cant kick, Howe takes the occasional screamer that hides his lack of work ethic. These are players that should be seriously influencing games but don't have the ethic, attitude, talent or a combination of the three to make a dent. Apologies to Spencer, Jones x 2, Clisby and Viney but the rest were an embarrassment to the jumper.

Edited by big_red_fire_engine
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Pedo chased the little guys. Lovely.

sometimes words can read very differently to how written...lol

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Have we just played our first game at our future home ground?

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