Jump to content

  • Demonland Interviews

Sign in to follow this  
Demonland

NO CONTEST by George on The Outer

Recommended Posts

This was the first finals series the Melbourne Football Club has participated in a dozen years and its first Preliminary Final for 18. The club got here in 2018 because it built its reputation on contest, but in the end the game against West Coast was no contest as the Eagles ran out winners by over ten goals.

The match itself was really over by quarter time, as the young Demons were simply swamped by a side that was bigger, stronger and ultimately had more intent on achieving its goal. 

The game, while disappointing from an outcome perspective, should motivate the Demons in the same way that the Round 22 match against Collingwood did last year.  It was what finals football was all about and while they had performed admirably in winning their past 2 matches to progress to the Preliminary, this was when things got serious.  

Melbourne was exposed in the same way that Richmond was exposed on Friday night because, to get into the Big Dance, you cannot afford to come into any game half-hearted, injured or with stop gap players.

Right from the start the Demons were in trouble, with errant handballs and players slipping constantly at critical moments. While West Coast scored four goals to zip in the first quarter, three of those came directly from Melbourne turnovers. Coupled with some undisciplined acts from Jordan Lewis, the momentum that a young team relied upon to forge forward was completely and utterly deflated.  

It didn’t get any better in the second quarter and by half time the Eagles held a ten goal lead, which was to be the final margin. The coach would have been fuming as he watched Melbourne revert to the old style of play of standing back and expecting others to do the work. I heard it mentioned that the Demons had only three tackles to ¼ time and a paltry 30 odd for the whole game - a poor result from a side that prides itself on contest. 
 
Statistics lovers would think Angus Brayshaw played a good game.  But stumbles, fumbles and miskicks don’t get recorded.  The stat which did get recorded was the eight clangers. The fact that he wasn’t on the ground for a majority of the third term indicates that something was wrong with him, and his grunt and surety was missed, despite the numbers.  

All around the ground, we were seeing structures which were not what had been seen in past weeks or months.  Tom McDonald was playing back, Aaron vndenBerg almost full time in the middle, Joel Smith supposedly selected as a backman spent most of the game forward.  When players are being thrown around like this, it can only mean that an attempt is being made to fill gaps.  

The result is the was little in the way of forward structure, but then the ball didn’t get down there until the second half of the game, and even then there was no genuine marking target.  How we would have relished Jesse Hogan in front of goal - perhaps next year?

The mids were simply destroyed, not from the clearances, but by the outside run which enabled them to deliver cleanly to their forwards in Darling, Kennedy, Cripps and LeCras.  As mentioned last week, when we have Jones and Tyson on the wing, there is no run for us, but importantly, they cannot keep up with the opposition.  Then with Alex Neal-Bullen able to just hit 50% disposal efficiency, it showed that even when we had the ball, we simply butchered it.

The forwards had a shocker of a day as well.  Without T McDonald there to provide a target for good parts of the game, the likes of Melksham, Hannan and Spargo rarely had a viable touch, with all of them barely into double figure disposals. Sam Weideman reverted to being unable to hold a mark this week, and Christian Petracca kept trying to give the ball off to others when inside 30m himself. His set shots were nothing to behold again.  Plenty of work needs to be done for him in this area over summer. 

The backs were overwhelmed by the amount of ball coming in, but the lack of composure was telling, especially compared with their work-rate last week.  Sadly, Oscar McDonald and Michael Hibberd failed to effect a single tackle, Sam Frost, Lewis and Christian Salem one each. Neville Jetta at least had three. 

The mids weren’t much better and their numbers were mostly twos and threes. Overall there were seven players who didn’t lay a single tackle in the game. Simply not good enough in any game, let alone a Preliminary Final.

Can the Demons learn from this game?  The coach has already indicated that contest is king and that is particularly the case in Finals, especially when you get to the pointy end. The fans can be proud and happy with the performance during the season, and have seen the results following years of promises and nothing to show but there has to be more.

And there is much more improvement to come, simply because the majority of this group is still young. They came up against a side on its home turf which played in a Grand Final just three years ago, finished the home and away  season in second spot and were handed (and took) the initiative in the first ten minutes of the game. They deserve to be Grand Finalists again this year, but we must learn to perform to the standard required to get to the final stage, that they displayed in this game ... an in particular, to always provide a contest.

I just can’t wait for the cricket and tennis to be over ...
 
Melbourne 0.3.3 0.6.6 5.9.39 7.13.55

West Coast Eagles 4.8.32 10.9.69 15.10.100 18.13.121

Goals 

Melbourne Melksham 2 Hannan Harmes Oliver  J Smith Weideman

West Coast Eagles Kennedy 4 Cripps Darling LeCras 3, Hutchings Redden Rioli Ryan Venables

Best 

Melbourne Harmes Oliver vandenBerg Petracca J Smith Viney 

West Coast Eagles Kennedy Redden Cripps Hurn McGovern Sheed LeCras

Injuries 

Melbourne Nil 

West Coast Eagles Nil

Reports

Melbourne Nil 

West Coast Eagles Nil

Umpires Nicholls, Meredith, Chamberlain 

Official crowd 59,608 at Optus Stadium

a6af0603592408bafb8b724c6d97389f.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Social Media

  • Match Previews, Reports & Articles

    THE LAST POST by George on the Outer

    The Last Post sounded out in memory of the fallen around a packed MCG at the Anzac Eve match against Richmond. The silence of the crowd assembled was in tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. But the Last Post was also an appropriate symbol of the finals aspirations now gone for the Melbourne Football club, after a mere six rounds of the 2019 Season.   How far has this team fallen!  From a Preliminary final contestant barely six months ago, to cellar dwelle

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    THE BRIGHT SIDE by Whispering Jack

    I don’t often agree with Dermott Brereton but he came close to the mark last week when he labelled Melbourne a “team of downhill skiers” that works much harder offensively than it does defensively.  And he was looking at the bright side of the team’s game plan. That proposition has been clear since before the season started. It was obvious from the first JLT game against Richmond when the team leaked multiple goals in a short space of time as players gave metres away to opposition forwards.

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    CASEY VS THE AUSSIES by KC from Casey

    The Casey Demons played an exhibition match against an Australian Under 19 team at the MCG on Easter Saturday but the game was played with more than half an eye on the fact that whilst their senior counterpart was taking part in their AFL Round 5 game against St Kilda later that afternoon, they also had an assignment just four days later against Richmond.  The team, with 10 AFL Demons, opened strongly and dominated the first half to lead by four goals at the main break before taking most of

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Casey Articles

    EASTER BUNNIES by George on the Outer

    Easter is supposed to be an occasion of hope, revival and ultimately celebration.  But for the Demon supporters it was none of these as yet again their team was made Easter Bunnies by the Saints. With the exception of Christian Salem, there was not a single winner on the ground.  The danger for the Demons was giving the Saints their own hope and enthusiasm by conceding early goals.  That is exactly what happened in the first quarter, although with some ridiculous frees from the umpires clos

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    MARCHING IN by The Oracle

    The most embarrassing loss of the 2018 season (perhaps aside from the Preliminary Final) for Melbourne was the one it suffered in Round 15 against lowly St Kilda. The Demons came into the game as a red hot favourite but were embarrassed by the Saints' speed and willingness to take the contest right up to them for virtually the full four quarters. It was a defeat that they were to bemoan for the remainder of the season. Their arrogance in going into the game and taking an opponent lightly was a c

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    RELENTLESS by KC from Casey

    The Casey Demons returned to the winning list with an emphatic 54 point victory over a limp North Melbourne VFL combination at Casey Fields on Saturday. Smarting from last week’s thrashing at Box Hill, the Demons came out of the blocks intent on redeeming themselves for their embarrassing start to the 2019 campaign.  After a brief early bout of inaccuracy, the goals flowed as a result of relentless pressure applied to the visitors who were constantly forced into error. The pleasing thi

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Casey Articles

    TO A “T” by George on the Outer

    Thursday night football - not something Melbourne FC are accustomed to doing, especially after barely garnering a Friday night game for years. Yet with this opportunity, the Demons soundly beat the Swans at the SCG and put their season back on Track. This was not only a game of mental toughness, since the Demons had so far failed to win a game in 2019 and faced possibly a season ending prospect of 0-4, should they have failed in Sydney.  History was against them, and Buddy Frankli

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    SWANSONG by Whispering Jack

    They said that in 2019, the Melbourne Football Club was going to take its game to another level but we were never prepared for the level the club is reaching as it approaches the fourth round of the season holding up the entire AFL ladder in a match that could be its swansong for the year.    We were meant to be premiership contenders, not playing off for a wooden spoon which is what will be the case unless there is a sudden and dramatic turn around in our fortunes!    And whilst there

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    A DAY TO FORGET by KC from Casey

    The Casey Demons started the 2019 in unimpressive fashion with a 62 point loss to the  Box Hill Hawks at Box Hill City Oval. It was a total contrast to their 2018 opening when they monstered the Coburg Lions but the circumstances were entirely different. Twelve months ago, the Demons were able to go into the match with a large contingent of AFL listed players while yesterday, they went into the game with 12 Melbourne players, mostly inexperienced.  They were also hampered by the AFL sc

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Casey Articles

    2019 IS NOT 2018 by George on the Outer

    Seems like an obvious statement doesn’t it?   Yet the MFC coaching staff/team seem to have forgotten to change their calendars on January 1st. A 3 goal loss against the equal bottom side in the competition and now with a 0-3 record for the current season, it should be obvious that things have changed from 2018.  Not so on the field, as Melbourne continue to play the style which got them to a Preliminary final.   Once again the Demons saw 20 goals scored against them for the game.

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    THE NIGHT OF THE TORTOISES by The Oracle

    Friday night sees two clubs of which a great deal was expected in 2019, facing off in the battle of the slow starting tortoises. Both have had calamitous starts to the season and are sitting at 0-2. One of them will, by the end of the evening, be seeing their season slipping away from their grasp.   Both clubs are playing without confidence and without purpose. The Demons, who had the best-performed attack of all clubs last year, managed to convert 73 entries inside their forward 50 metre a

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    THE CAT RUN by George on the Outer

    It truly became a “Cat Run” with an 80 point win to the home side, an outcome that had us wondering what happened to the Demons of 2018 when they got to a Preliminary final on the basis of their “brand” of contested football?   Well that part hasn’t changed any, since the likes of Clayton Oliver can win the ball 44 times in a game including 15 clearances, Angus Brayshaw racks up 33 touches with Jack Viney chipping in for 27 of this own.  In the ruck Max Gawn had 53 hitouts on the night, and

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

×
×
  • Create New...