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POSTGAME: Rd 10 vs GWS

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34 minutes ago, jnrmac said:

This is just wrong. We weren't slow against the Eagles.

It's ball movement that count. The problem is when you turn it over and it flies back the other way which we are world champions at....

This is partly true but so is Yeater's call Jnr.  There is another problem i'm seeing which i will get to later.

Yeater is correct to a point.  We lack some outside speed and a genuine inside/outside mid also.

We are slow to get away from opponents in congestion.  Especially when we play either two or sometimes three out of.... Chunk, Clarry and Viney... through the middle at the same time.  PEDESTRIAN mid field that is too easily corralled and tackled to oblivion until the inevitable turnover which sees the quicker (outside balanced and slightly better skilled on the outside) opp easily run off.

Last season we had an in form Brayshaw who came in for an injured Viney and completely changed the 'look' of our mostly inside biased mid field (with Viney in) and helped to transform us from a mostly inside plodding mid field to a dangerous one. along with some help from Harmes.  This took the imbalance away from the plodding 3...either by accident or design, and helped turn our season around IMO.  Where is Brayshaw now?  Ok maybe he started terribly out of form and was never able to get back (actually gotten even worse unfortunately) but he just hasn't been or hasn't been able to impact going through the middle.  It would appear he is mostly playing a wing role now, and to the team's detriment.

And when the ball does get out there are few options outside of Salem (who obviously didn't play today) and Harmes on the outside.

A classy speedy outside wingman to accompany Salem on the other wing and a genuine outside/inside mid are a must get if we are to turn this around.

IMHO many of our turnovers are generally also caused due to a lack of burst speed away from congestion or from an opponent.  Players that are one paced are more likely to be run down easily or have the feeling they will be, and are then under perceived pressure that they should dispose of the ball quickly (and rightfully so) or they will be tackled quickly.  Smith's lack of speed, where he got tackled off HB early a great example of that and the fear that the lack of burst speed creates.

On the other hand, having that initial burst or speed or turn (whatever you wish to call it) allows a player, with just a few steps, to escape from congestion or an opponent, assess a little, then more often than not find a target (assuming he has basic level AFL disposal skills).  Yes, SOME do not and may never gain this and it wont matter what turn of speed they have.    But that is why you recruit for both.  If they don't FCS don't recruit them (outside of rucks and the odd genuinely talented big grab key forward or key back).

The other part i wanted to cover here is structure and organisation around the footy.  I thought ours was terribly poor today and we, yet again, regressed to a structure that saw us with too many at the contest while allowing the Giants too many on the outside periphery ready to pounce on the inevitable loose ball or scoop up the receive and get the ball moving lateral or forward quickly to their advantage.  This allowed them some fabulous delivery inside 50, leaving our defenders terribly exposed far too often.

And we not just had too many in at the contest (poor structure), we had too many slooow plodders, in at the contest who were then unable to get back with any speed into defence and help out once the ball left congestion in the hands of the Giant's outside sweepers OR to help out in covering their switch.

Poorly structured, unbalanced (too many slow inside plodders at the coal face for the center bounces) and in general too many one paced players who have no initial burst speed.  The structure and imbalance can be corrected by training / drills to a degree.  How it hasn't by this point is a major concern.  The burst speed factor should also be a plausible fix if the so called high performance manager was working some magic.  It would appear he isn't though with a few (naturaly gifted?) exceptions.  Aside from high performance the only other option there is to recruit it in from outside.

Edited by Rusty Nails
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6 minutes ago, Stormy Dee said:

They didn’t run through it. They walked up to it and gently squeezed through.

We have 3/4 of our players out injured or playing injured and replaced by NQR VFL players. What did you expect from this game?

I expect more than one goal for two and a half quarters. We had the dominant ruck and enough talent to do better than that. It not losing it how you lose

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I think we are the most 'confidence" reliant side in the competition and think this should be explored if it has not already by a professional.  Perhaps it comes from a combined lack of individual confidence which is on display when we play poorly. Conversely when we hit our straps we play like few others. Its as if our guys are saying," wow, we are better than I thought. It was on display again today,

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30 minutes ago, Dee Zephyr said:

De Boer has many scalps this season tagging, there’s another one. Not that it would have made a difference but why not throw Oliver forward in patches and bring Gus back in the middle. 

Thank you DZ.  How many coaches are in the box again?  Instead we threw Spargo to FF at one point!   Lets forget why we were what we were last year WITH Gus spending a big chunk of time through the middle.

As one other option, how about Chunk forward (having had no impact for 2 quarters) , Spargo on the bench (having had no impact for 2 quarters), and Gus through the middle (see earlier parentheses!).

Edited by Rusty Nails
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What I sat through today (to the bitter end, I might add) was at times a farce. GWS need not get too cocky, they were playing against what was virtually a VFL side. Poor Max worked his guts out and looked exhausted. I truly worry he will break down. Marty Hore tried his hardest. If it wasn't for his efforts the Giants would have kicked many more goals. It must have been frustrating for him to see the ball come back down again so quickly. Then he was running all over the backline trying to cover for everybody like a lone hand in defence. Kudos to him. The rest? It was a side decimated by injuries and totally lacking confidence in themselves and each other.

Someone once said to me years ago that a good big man is always better than a good small man. In this case, a good ordinary (with apologies to Jack Dyer) big man is better than a good ordinary small man. Play Preuss to help Max or leave him in the goal square to wave his arms around. 

Ray Chamberlain- pack your ego away and seriously consider retiring. Your idea of making a decision is to give it to me to ball it up or play on, doesn't matter what irregularities have transpired on the field.

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4 hours ago, bing181 said:

16 possessions, 5 marks and 2 goals from a kid playing his second game is phenomenal, whether you rate it or not.

Correct except it’s rated high

id be more concerned about mung bean players and John Goodman coaching 

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I'm not sure if this or something similar has already been posted, apologies if I have missed it. 

The reality is, I challenge any team to have almost half or just over of their best 22 out and to be competitive. Yes, we had half a team of players who aren't AFL standard and it showed. It has also given us an opportunity to see what some players are made of when we are missing all these players. I, like everyone, entered this season hopeful and optimistic. I was furious when I left today, angry that the team had AGAIN dished up complete rubbish. After having time to calm down, I had a think and have come to the conclusion that yes, we are lacking leadership, but we are also lacking a hell of a lot of mature AFL bodies. But I would say the following are best 22 players (or are at least on the cusp) and they were all missing or have just come back into VFL footy:

Salem, ANB, Lewis, Lever, May, KK, Jetta, Hibberd, Melksham, Hannah, AVB, Weideman, J Smith, JKH - that's 14 players. I reckon of that 14, you would say all of them with maybe the exception of JKH, Lewis (age catching up) and maybe ANB are not best 22. So that leaves 11. Literally half our team. Not to mention, the majority of our backline. 

Some of the above we only have ourselves to blame for their absence - eg J Smith being sent back on with a groin injury in a JLT match. The rest is a result of bad luck. 

When you swap out the following players: C Wagner, Spargo, Petty, Stretch, Garlett, O McDonald, Fritsch and potentially J Wagner, Lockhart, O Baker (who I think will keep his spot) our team looks a hell of a lot better. Every team gets injuries, sure. But if I hear about how badly hit Richmond have been without a word in the media really about ours injury list and the level of player we're missing i'll spew. 

I acknowledge the lack of form of Brayshaw, Viney, Jones, TMac etc hasn't helped.

Things that I think are interesting out of our injury plight are - Hunt as a forward, Frost potentially keeping his spot when the defenders are back, seeing Lockhart and Baker with more mature and more highly skilled players around them, seeing if these players have any impact at all. If they don't then we can presume that last year was the anomaly, not this year. 

I'm also not usually the one for positivity. I don't think the above is being an optimist, I think it's just a reason. 

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3 minutes ago, lucifer said:

I'm not sure if this or something similar has already been posted, apologies if I have missed it. 

The reality is, I challenge any team to have almost half or just over of their best 22 out and to be competitive. Yes, we had half a team of players who aren't AFL standard and it showed. It has also given us an opportunity to see what some players are made of when we are missing all these players. I, like everyone, entered this season hopeful and optimistic. I was furious when I left today, angry that the team had AGAIN dished up complete rubbish. After having time to calm down, I had a think and have come to the conclusion that yes, we are lacking leadership, but we are also lacking a hell of a lot of mature AFL bodies. But I would say the following are best 22 players (or are at least on the cusp) and they were all missing or have just come back into VFL footy:

Salem, ANB, Lewis, Lever, May, KK, Jetta, Hibberd, Melksham, Hannah, AVB, Weideman, J Smith, JKH - that's 14 players. I reckon of that 14, you would say all of them with maybe the exception of JKH, Lewis (age catching up) and maybe ANB are not best 22. So that leaves 11. Literally half our team. Not to mention, the majority of our backline. 

Some of the above we only have ourselves to blame for their absence - eg J Smith being sent back on with a groin injury in a JLT match. The rest is a result of bad luck. 

When you swap out the following players: C Wagner, Spargo, Petty, Stretch, Garlett, O McDonald, Fritsch and potentially J Wagner, Lockhart, O Baker (who I think will keep his spot) our team looks a hell of a lot better. Every team gets injuries, sure. But if I hear about how badly hit Richmond have been without a word in the media really about ours injury list and the level of player we're missing i'll spew. 

I acknowledge the lack of form of Brayshaw, Viney, Jones, TMac etc hasn't helped.

Things that I think are interesting out of our injury plight are - Hunt as a forward, Frost potentially keeping his spot when the defenders are back, seeing Lockhart and Baker with more mature and more highly skilled players around them, seeing if these players have any impact at all. If they don't then we can presume that last year was the anomaly, not this year. 

I'm also not usually the one for positivity. I don't think the above is being an optimist, I think it's just a reason. 

Agree with you.

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6 minutes ago, lucifer said:

I'm not sure if this or something similar has already been posted, apologies if I have missed it. 

The reality is, I challenge any team to have almost half or just over of their best 22 out and to be competitive. Yes, we had half a team of players who aren't AFL standard and it showed. It has also given us an opportunity to see what some players are made of when we are missing all these players. I, like everyone, entered this season hopeful and optimistic. I was furious when I left today, angry that the team had AGAIN dished up complete rubbish. After having time to calm down, I had a think and have come to the conclusion that yes, we are lacking leadership, but we are also lacking a hell of a lot of mature AFL bodies. But I would say the following are best 22 players (or are at least on the cusp) and they were all missing or have just come back into VFL footy:

Salem, ANB, Lewis, Lever, May, KK, Jetta, Hibberd, Melksham, Hannah, AVB, Weideman, J Smith, JKH - that's 14 players. I reckon of that 14, you would say all of them with maybe the exception of JKH, Lewis (age catching up) and maybe ANB are not best 22. So that leaves 11. Literally half our team. Not to mention, the majority of our backline. 

Some of the above we only have ourselves to blame for their absence - eg J Smith being sent back on with a groin injury in a JLT match. The rest is a result of bad luck. 

When you swap out the following players: C Wagner, Spargo, Petty, Stretch, Garlett, O McDonald, Fritsch and potentially J Wagner, Lockhart, O Baker (who I think will keep his spot) our team looks a hell of a lot better. Every team gets injuries, sure. But if I hear about how badly hit Richmond have been without a word in the media really about ours injury list and the level of player we're missing i'll spew. 

I acknowledge the lack of form of Brayshaw, Viney, Jones, TMac etc hasn't helped.

Things that I think are interesting out of our injury plight are - Hunt as a forward, Frost potentially keeping his spot when the defenders are back, seeing Lockhart and Baker with more mature and more highly skilled players around them, seeing if these players have any impact at all. If they don't then we can presume that last year was the anomaly, not this year. 

I'm also not usually the one for positivity. I don't think the above is being an optimist, I think it's just a reason. 

Good analysis but I only only see the following automatic, established selections-Salem, Lever, May, Jetta,  Hibberd,  Melksham,  None of the others are established senior players with the exception of Lewis. All the rest have been in and out for one reason or another.

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Just now, Sorry kids said:

Good analysis but I only only see the following automatic, established selections-Salem, Lever, May, Jetta,  Hibberd,  Melksham,  None of the others are established senior players with the exception of Lewis. All the rest have been in and out for one reason or another.

I reckon that's a fair point too. I think though, when fit AVB, Hannah, J Smith in particular give our forward line a different look. And you would imagine would be in front of C Wagner, Spargo, Lockhart, Garlett

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31 minutes ago, lucifer said:

I reckon that's a fair point too. I think though, when fit AVB, Hannah, J Smith in particular give our forward line a different look. And you would imagine would be in front of C Wagner, Spargo, Lockhart, Garlett

Yes, no doubt better than current best 22. Lets hope a few of the others prove me wrong.

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3 hours ago, Forest Demon said:

Just finished watching and the disparity in effort was marginal, but the disparity in skills has never been wider. GWS were near perfect for 3 quarters and we weren’t even playing the same sport.

GWS were bloody good today. They came to play and their midfield was outstanding. Hard two-way running and also really hard to beat at the contest. The game was won and lost in the midfield and they took us to the cleaners. I feel in some way this is the most worrying aspect because our core midfield has been pretty good all year and it's our other ends that have let us down. I haven't seen them get that badly beaten since the PF.

Another problem we had today was that when GWS got on a quick break away, the midfielders were too focused on "folding back" into defence and not focused on putting pressure on the ball carrier (hence GWS' kicking efficiency and accuracy was through the roof). This was surely coach driven and it reflects a lack of confidence with our defensive personnel but also being worried about the potency of GWS' attack. With Lever, May, Salem and Hibberd back there, you won't see this focus on folding back as much as you can trust them to a win a one-on-one.

Mind you, GWS' foot skills are elite and they are also one of the most efficient team going forward this year.

2 hours ago, Damo said:

Ok Brayshaw is now on a wing and looking pretty [censored] unhappy with that change.

Paul Roos talked about this on the couch this week. He said that Jones had struggled in the wing role and it forced Goodwin to put him into the middle of the ground. Basically Goodwin had no where else to put him. Hence, he moved Brayshaw out to a wing. Brayshaw will go back into the middle once Jones is dropped/retired. I can't see him playing off half back when you have Salem, Hore, Lever, Hibberd back there.

 

Edited by At the break of Gawn
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3 minutes ago, At the break of Gawn said:

GWS were bloody good today. They came to play and their midfield was outstanding. Hard two-way running and also really hard to beat at the contest. The game was won and lost in the midfield and they took us to the cleaners. I feel in some way this is the most worrying aspect because our core midfield has been pretty good all year and it's our other ends that have let us down. I haven't seen them get that badly beaten since the PF.

Another problem we had today was that when GWS got on a quick break away, the midfielders were too focused on "folding back" into defence and not focused on putting pressure on the ball carrier (hence GWS' kicking efficiency and accuracy was through the roof). This was surely coach driven and it reflects a lack of confidence with our defensive personnel but also being worried about the potency of GWS' attack. With Lever, May, Salem and Hibberd back there, you won't see this focus on folding back as much as you can trust them to a win a one-on-one.

Mind you, GWS' foot skills are elite and they are also one of the most efficient team going forward this year.

Paul Roos talked about this on the couch this week. He said that Jones had struggled in the wing role and it forced Goodwin to put him into the middle of the ground. Basically Goodwin had no where else to put him. Hence, he moved Brayshaw out to a wing. Brayshaw will go back into the middle once Jones is dropped/retired. I can't see him playing off half back when you have Salem, Hore, Lever, Hibberd back there.

 

If correct that is very unprofessional and appalling coaching. No player should be gifted a position and if he is being gifted a game he should be played half forward-deep.

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1 hour ago, lucifer said:

I'm not sure if this or something similar has already been posted, apologies if I have missed it. 

The reality is, I challenge any team to have almost half or just over of their best 22 out and to be competitive. Yes, we had half a team of players who aren't AFL standard and it showed. It has also given us an opportunity to see what some players are made of when we are missing all these players. I, like everyone, entered this season hopeful and optimistic. I was furious when I left today, angry that the team had AGAIN dished up complete rubbish. After having time to calm down, I had a think and have come to the conclusion that yes, we are lacking leadership, but we are also lacking a hell of a lot of mature AFL bodies. But I would say the following are best 22 players (or are at least on the cusp) and they were all missing or have just come back into VFL footy:

Salem, ANB, Lewis, Lever, May, KK, Jetta, Hibberd, Melksham, Hannah, AVB, Weideman, J Smith, JKH - that's 14 players. I reckon of that 14, you would say all of them with maybe the exception of JKH, Lewis (age catching up) and maybe ANB are not best 22. So that leaves 11. Literally half our team. Not to mention, the majority of our backline. 

Some of the above we only have ourselves to blame for their absence - eg J Smith being sent back on with a groin injury in a JLT match. The rest is a result of bad luck. 

When you swap out the following players: C Wagner, Spargo, Petty, Stretch, Garlett, O McDonald, Fritsch and potentially J Wagner, Lockhart, O Baker (who I think will keep his spot) our team looks a hell of a lot better. Every team gets injuries, sure. But if I hear about how badly hit Richmond have been without a word in the media really about ours injury list and the level of player we're missing i'll spew. 

I acknowledge the lack of form of Brayshaw, Viney, Jones, TMac etc hasn't helped.

Things that I think are interesting out of our injury plight are - Hunt as a forward, Frost potentially keeping his spot when the defenders are back, seeing Lockhart and Baker with more mature and more highly skilled players around them, seeing if these players have any impact at all. If they don't then we can presume that last year was the anomaly, not this year. 

I'm also not usually the one for positivity. I don't think the above is being an optimist, I think it's just a reason. 

Ripping post mate 👏

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See, the trick is to watch it on DELAY

When it gets to 44-9, you decide to skip through rapidly in 5s increments to see if we're mounting any kind of fight back.

Then when its around 56-11 you just skip through minutes at a time and then eventually you've watched quarters 2, 3 & 4 in 10 or so minutes.

Then you can devote the hour or two you've saved to doing something useful...

 

Edited by John Demonic
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Watching Gawn to made me feel like I was watching Stynes again trying to carry the whole side.

Seems like Hore is now our best defender and he's a first year player.

I think they've gotta try Jones forward or else he might have to go.

Geez our disposal is terrible.

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We are like a poor cricket side that doesnt bat very deep... too many vfl players not up to AFL level. Have drafted poorly & with key outs due to injuries we are shown up ..  Kelly & Wines just to mention a few blunders. 

Edited by Demonsone
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5 hours ago, Elegt said:

Letting Dean Kent go for a pack of chips was a mistake 

You spelt his name wrong.  It's J.E.S.S.E  H.O.G.A.N

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3 hours ago, Sorry kids said:

Do you think that means he would have played exactly like he did at Casey as he would have in the Giants match. Do you think the game would have played out exactly as it did at Casey, Do you think he would have played the same role as at Casey. Wow. Beyond that I do not understand your support of Spargo.

I'll take that as a zero.

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1 hour ago, At the break of Gawn said:

 

 

Paul Roos talked about this on the couch this week. He said that Jones had struggled in the wing role and it forced Goodwin to put him into the middle of the ground. Basically Goodwin had no where else to put him. Hence, he moved Brayshaw out to a wing. Brayshaw will go back into the middle once Jones is dropped/retired. I can't see him playing off half back when you have Salem, Hore, Lever, Hibberd back there.

 

Time to retire the elephant in the room just like all the circuses have done with theirs.

 

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4 hours ago, Damo said:

1. If you were coaching against us, you would tell the backs Demon mids will kick it it up and under into the forward zone. Other than Salem no one kicks it other than directly in front of themselves. By that I mean that if you look at the set of the shoulders this actually allows you to read where they are going to aim, again up and under. This allows time to defend as 50% of the time it will be right on the top of the head of the forward. So it will always look as if they are kicking to a contest, or a 3 on one. But it is because we are slower in the forward 50 this year.

2. That brings the issue of leading. Jaydon Hunt is the only one who can lead faster than his opponent. Tom Mac looks like he couldnt beat a cow coming in to be milked. We miss Melksham.

These are two major issues that need to be worked on.

How often did a GWS player take a mark inside 50 on a lead, with our defender trailing them? And how often did it feel like our forwards could get no separation on their GWS defenders?

Only Hunt was regularly getting away from his opponent and he took three or four good leading grabs.

But is it chicken or egg - are we seeing lack of separation from forwards because they are having the ball delivered behind them or above their head, as opposed to out in front of them to their advantage?

Our kicking going inside 50 isn't improving.

3 hours ago, jnrmac said:

This is just wrong. We weren't slow against the Eagles.

It's ball movement that count. The problem is when you turn it over and it flies back the other way which we are world champions at....

Agree to an extent.

GWS' superior foot speed was evident today - so many times players like Kelly and Whitfield were able to break free from stoppages and get clearance on our mids.

But generally, we looked much quicker last week with 20 of the same players playing this week.

The game was much more on our terms last week - we were winning CPs and clearances. Today GWS beat us in the middle and, as is too often the case with us, if you beat us in CPs/clearances the rest of our game falls apart.

37 minutes ago, pinkshark said:

You spelt his name wrong.  It's J.E.S.S.E  H.O.G.A.N

You mean the same Jesse Hogan who played all four quarters today against Brisbane and didn't get a single kick?

Meanwhile Dean Kent had 14 touches and zero tackles. 

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I will expand on this when I do my mid-season review in two weeks time, but essentially we were beaten well before quarter time.

How can a coach pick 7 players under 6 ft (Viney, Jones, Hunt, Spargo, Lockhart, Garlett, Corey Wagner) against a side called the Giants who are actually a huge side is beyond belief? It's hard to fathom how you could leave out an aggressive tall in Preuss for a game where aside from Mummy, they had Tomlinson, Taylor, Davis, Cameron, Himmelberg, Finlayson and Haynes who are all well and truly 192cm plus. Not surprisingly we were smashed aerially, except for Gawny who more than held his own.

Of course the answer is that we have some major injuries and unfortunately almost all of them have been to our mid-size brigade - Hannan, Joel Smith, Vanders and more recently Hibberd and Melky and you can throw KK into that mix as well. The injuries to May and Lever have meant that we've been forced to play slows in Oscar Mc and more recently Petty and been exposed on the lead.

On the positive side our injuries have given a lot of players a chance to see if they are up to AFL level. Baker showed a bit today, Stretch again covered plenty of territory and Josh Wags was resolute in defence, but clearly many of our fringe player are just not up to the level.

Have a look at the stats - Garlett, Corey Wags, Lockhart and Spargo had a combined 32 disposals - that's eight touches each on average. Petty and Oscar Mc combined for 13 disposals and three marks, whilst their opponents Himmelberg and Finlayson had 16 marks and shared six goals.

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3 hours ago, At the break of Gawn said:

GWS were bloody good today. They came to play and their midfield was outstanding. Hard two-way running and also really hard to beat at the contest. The game was won and lost in the midfield and they took us to the cleaners. I feel in some way this is the most worrying aspect because our core midfield has been pretty good all year and it's our other ends that have let us down. I haven't seen them get that badly beaten since the PF.

Another problem we had today was that when GWS got on a quick break away, the midfielders were too focused on "folding back" into defence and not focused on putting pressure on the ball carrier (hence GWS' kicking efficiency and accuracy was through the roof). This was surely coach driven and it reflects a lack of confidence with our defensive personnel but also being worried about the potency of GWS' attack. With Lever, May, Salem and Hibberd back there, you won't see this focus on folding back as much as you can trust them to a win a one-on-one.

Mind you, GWS' foot skills are elite and they are also one of the most efficient team going forward this year.

Paul Roos talked about this on the couch this week. He said that Jones had struggled in the wing role and it forced Goodwin to put him into the middle of the ground. Basically Goodwin had no where else to put him. Hence, he moved Brayshaw out to a wing. Brayshaw will go back into the middle once Jones is dropped/retired. I can't see him playing off half back when you have Salem, Hore, Lever, Hibberd back there.

 

I heard this but I don't think it's right.Brayshaw was one of the main reasons behind our terrible start to the season. His disposal was horrific and he pays little respect to his opponents and does not run hard defensively. For someone who came in to the AFL and was an elite tackler, he is now a poor tackler. 

When they switched him into the midfield today, you could see why he should be. The goal Josh Kelly kicked from the centre clearance  which was highlighted in the telecast showed how poor he is defensively.

He is devoid of confidence now, it appears they wanted him to work on some areas of the game and it has backfired.

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    STATE OF DEESASTER by the Oracle

    Melbourne’s circus caravan rolls into Adelaide on Wednesday night, an event that will put shivers up the spine of every Crows’ supporter as they look directly into the face of disaster. The flakey Demons left their home town a month ago and proceeded to rough up the Gold Coast Suns and Hawthorn in Sydney before moving on to the sunny Queensland where they missed by a bee’s diaphragm against the more or less local second-on-ladder Brisbane Lions. Then, they had to butter up against the top t

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    OVERPOWERED by George on the Outer

    In a dismal display against Port Adelaide, Melbourne showed it had learnt nothing from their previous week’s loss to Brisbane. Port, in contrast, after losing to St.Kilda, addressed their failings, and as a result made the Demons look like a second-rate side.  Melbourne failed to score a goal in the first quarter, and the first time it seriously troubled the goal umpire was saved until a minute before half-time.  Did it get any better?  No with their meagre three goals for the sec

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    DESPERATION OF THE MOMENT by Whispering Jack

    Melbourne’s recent win against Hawthorn highlighted how important Max Gawn’s ruck domination is for the team. A week later however, that domination continued but its effect was totally blunted by the Brisbane Lions midfield and, as a consequence, what could have been an easy win over a leading AFL contender turned into a disappointing but close loss and a sense of desperation now looms over the club as the halfway mark of the season approaches. This week’s opponent in Port Adelaide also und

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    THE FOUR POINT FAIL by George on the Outer

    Melbourne went down by 4 points in a thrilling finish against Brisbane, but they failed by more than the 4 points.     They also failed to score the 4 points necessary to keep them in the race for the finals, and now find themselves sitting 6 points outside the top 8, but effectively 2 games outside (even though they have a game in hand).   The Demons had more than enough opportunities to win.  Six very easy shots on goal failed to bother the goal umpire with a major and ultimate

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    NORTH OF THE BORDER PART 2 by The Oracle

    The travelling COVID circus moves north of the border yet again and, unless at some time in the near future, Papua New Guinea opens its borders, this could be the last time this phenomenon happens. And as fortune would dictate, the resurgent Demons are walking directly into the sights of the locals from the bright lights of Brizvegas to Carrara - the scene of some long-forgotten (and deservedly so) battles with one of the Lions’ former incarnations, namely, the Brisbane Bears. But unli

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    ON THE NOSE by George on the Outer

    One of the Hawthorn Football Club’s valued sponsors is Azep® Nasal Spray and given the thrashing handed out to the Hawks in today’s game, it would appear that they need a huge supply of the sponsor’s product because they are simply on the nose. This condition was caused by the sheer dominance of the Demons, led magnificently by skipper Max Gawn with 27 hitouts and 22 disposals including two clearances. Around him in the middle were Christian Petracca with 29 touches, Clayton Oliver (also on

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    THE PREMIER LEAGUE by Whispering Jack

    So the new man under the pump is Clarko, which demonstrates how sad but predictable the football media is these days. In an age where each AFL team’s form can be topsy turvy and unpredictability is the order of the day, the coach of a team that has played five out of the top six teams from the previous season and sits with a 3/3 win loss record is this week’s whipping boy.   This comes admittedly on the back of a bad fortnight from the Hawks who in recent years have exhibited an enormous

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    SUNSMART by George on the Outer

    If you don’t want to get sunburnt, you follow the Sunsmart rules.  Melbourne took the advice and with their season on the line, avoided getting burnt by the Gold Coast Suns, with a gripping 17 point win. It was a match that could have gone either way, with the sides within a kick of each other for all but the final minutes of the final quarter. Melbourne had stretched the lead earlier in the game to 18 points, but that quickly evaporated to a neck and neck race to the finish.  Finally,

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    NORTH OF THE BORDER by The Oracle

    The outcomes of Melbourne’s recent games against the Gold Coast Suns are a pretty good barometer of how the teams are faring. The Demons easily accounted for them twice in 2018, the last win being a 96-point cakewalk at the MCG in Round 20 when they scored a whopping 21.17.143 to 7.5.47. Ironically, Melbourne’s score of 9.3.57 at the first break that afternoon is leading its highest score for a full game to date this year by 3 points. In those days, they played fast, skillful football, moved th

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    Match Previews 5

    PACK YOUR BAGS by George on The Outer

    The scene was captured by the TV camera’s before the match with a view of the Melbourne side’s bags packed next to the team bus to facilitate their flight up north to the AFL hub where they will play their next matches. However, on the basis of the efforts against Richmond, unless things change, and change rapidly, there will be some who will be told to pack their bags on a more permanent basis. Once again, the supporters got much the same story from this match against Richmond, as

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    SOUTH OF THE BORDER by the Oracle

    Thankfully they moved this week’s game from Sydney where the sun shines and the virus breeds ever so slowly and almost nobody returns a positive test. The change of fixture comes at precisely the right time to allow everyone in town to head to the MCG on Sunday at around 3:30pm, not to catch up with what’s going on inside the ground but rather, to do what’s fashionable for woke folk in 2020 — pulling down statues. It’s time for Kevin Bartlett and Leigh Matthews to go but you can’t touch Norm Smi

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