Jump to content

  • Podcast:     

  • Podcast:     

MARVELOUS PRESSURE by George on the Outer



Recommended Posts

Is this a new form of Melbourne which has suddenly emerged in 2021? 

In the past, whenever the pressure was applied, the team would falter early and as a consequence, it would more often than not, be forced to confront its own self-inflicted failure.

But perhaps not so this year. The match at Marvel Stadium against the Saints provided an insight into how creating pressure, actually relieves it on the club, players and coach.

Right from the start, Melbourne was there to make a statement. With St.Kilda promising so much pre-season, the hopes were high, and a Demon loss would have seen the club slip back into the pack in the race to secure a finals spot. 

However, the 18 point victory against a finals contender will surely lead the game’s observers to take some notice of what the Demons have been crafting in the past couple of years.

It is the group of young players who are making their mark. Trent Rivers, Tom Sparrow, James Jordon, Kysiah Pickett and Luke Jackson, with barely 1/10th of the games that Nathan Jones has under his belt in his career, are already carving their names into regular spots in the side, and putting pressure on other older experienced players to just get a game.

They can’t be denied, and their performances will keep them in the side.  But it is also the team pressure that was so evident from early in the game, that eventually won the day.  Even when the Demons were 16 points down in the second quarter, they continued to apply the pressure and then got the results with eight of the next ten goals.  That’s not the Melbourne side that the fans have been watching play in the past years. 

Right from the outset, the addition of Jack Viney in the midfield was telling as he kicked the first two goals for the side.  But it was the Jack of old, with his toughness around the ball, which enabled Clayton Oliver and Christian Petracca the latitude to be so, so damaging. 

This week they took full advantage of Max Gawn’s ruck dominance and had 17 clearances between them, while Viney chimed in with four of his own.

St.Kilda have a simple sling-shot tactic and game plan, but when you pressure and shut down their small runners, in the same way that Melbourne did to them in Alice Springs last year, they get starved of chances.  Lonie, Billings, Butler and Higgins were barely sighted and it all fell to Gresham to try and create opportunities. But he couldn’t do that on his own. 

The backs just did what they did last week, and the intercept marking of Steven May, Jake Lever and Adam Tomlinson was brilliantly backed up by the ground work of Nev Jetta, Rivers and Christian Salem. More important was the clean delivery they provided further up the ground, which simply kept pressuring the St.Kilda backs. 

The forwards are still missing the fire-power to benefit from these chances, but Tom McDonald did his best and finished with a couple of goals.  Bayley Firtisch had numerous set-shot chances, but could only manage to trouble the goal umpire once. However, Pickett was superb and cut a swathe through the defenders to put in an early candidate for goal of the year.
 
Likewise his constant pressure has them looking over their shoulder all the time, but like the Saints situation, it can’t be left to one or two to “carry the can”.  Hopefully, the long awaited arrival of Ben Brown will soon come to give Tom some help in holding off the big defenders.   

Luke Jackson is still raw, but very talented, and we still have to purloin him to fill in with ruck duties. Still when the side can put together a score of 91 points, we will be in the winner circle most games. 

The pressure and the media attention suddenly moves off the coach and the club. The journalists will find another easy target, but this type of win gives everyone much more breathing space.  It gives everyone the chance to show their capabilities and as we have seen to date, we can start to marvel at what is possible!

MELBOURNE 3.4.22 6.7.43 9.13.67 12.19.91

ST KILDA 3.2.20 6.3.39 8.4.52 11.7.73

GOALS

Melbourne McDonald Pickett Viney 2 Fritsch Jones Langdon Neal-Bullen Spargo Sparrow

St Kilda Steele 3 King 2 Battle, Billings Gresham Higgins McKernan Membrey

BEST

Melbourne Oliver Salem Gawn Petracca May Pickett

St Kilda Steele Howard Gresham Ross Gresham Wilkie

INJURIES

Melbourne Nil

St Kilda Jimmy Webster (jaw)

REPORTS

Melbourne Nil

St Kilda Nil

SUBSTITUTES

Melbourne Oskar Baker (unused)

St Kilda St Kilda Jack Bytel (replaced Webster)

UMPIRES Foot Fleer Mollison

CROWD 25,903 at Marvel Stadium

ReportRd022021.png

  • Like 2
  • Love 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Match Previews, Reports & Articles

    MOGGIES MASTERED by George on the Outer

    They say that herding cats is an impossible task but not for the Melbourne Demons who through relentless pressure, scored a commanding 25 point victory in Round 4 over Geelong at the MCG. The team that missed the AFL finals only once in the past dozen years were shown up by the new Demons of 2021 who have recorded their first 4-0 opening to the season in 21 years! Melbourne knew what was coming, and it was Geelong who were shown up for their inability to adapt to the 2021 style of foot

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    UNDER MY SKIN by The Oracle

    The story goes that there’s a certain player from Geelong who has been seen in Moorabool Street crooning the old Sinatra classic, “I’ve got you under my skin.” His name is O’Connor and he’s been tasked to achieve one thing on Sunday by his coach, Chris Scott: to get under the skin of a Demon midfielder on Sunday and thereby tag him out of the big contest at the G. The idea behind the tactic is to not only blunt one of the team’s most destructive weapons but to distract them all from producing th

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    MAX IN SPACE

    Demon skipper Max Gawn is one big unit at 208cm and lately he’s been standing even taller. We already know that he’s unstoppable in the air when going for a mark but with three consecutive victories to open the season, you might say that he has his head in the clouds.  And that is literally true thanks to a fan at Demonland.com who recently arranged for our big ruckman to go even further than the clouds but way beyond to the edge of space and into the stratosphere. And this photograph of Ma

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Special Features 25

    CAPITAL PUNISHMENT by George on the Outer

    A 34-point win in the nation’s capital has seen the Demons kill the Giants hopes early in the 2021 season. It wasn’t only the scoreboard, but a succession of injuries to major players for GWS that has put paid to their aspirations. The winning result wasn’t just due to the opposition losing players, but also to the relentless pressure from this 2021 Melbourne side that put them in the winners circle. In past years, a 16 point deficit at the first change combined with a rampant Toby Greene w

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    POWER AND THE PASSION by Whispering Jack

    The Demons ran out for their Qualifying Final match against the Fremantle Dockers at Casey Fields as the sounds of Midnight Oils’ “Power and the Passion cascaded over the mainly friendly pro-Melbourne crowd. It was a far cry from the season opener at Carrara in late January where few of their fans were in attendance in high 20’s heat and humidity and silence greeted every score from the slow-starting Demons. They ran away from the lowly Suns, won comfortably in the end and followed that with ano

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    BREAK OUT by Whispering Jack

    Despite the chaotic events occurring in Canberra over the past few weeks, one thing is for certain. This weekend’s game at Manuka Oval in the nation’s capital between the GWS Giants and Melbourne will decide which of Scott Morrison or Leon Cameron is the most under the pump at this point in time.  This time twelve months ago, the Giants were coming off a season in which they had played off in a grand final. They opened up their 2020 campaign with a resounding 32-point victory in round 1 aga

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    MARVELOUS PRESSURE by George on the Outer

    Is this a new form of Melbourne which has suddenly emerged in 2021?  In the past, whenever the pressure was applied, the team would falter early and as a consequence, it would more often than not, be forced to confront its own self-inflicted failure. But perhaps not so this year. The match at Marvel Stadium against the Saints provided an insight into how creating pressure, actually relieves it on the club, players and coach. Right from the start, Melbourne was there to make a stat

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    STUCK IN THE MIDDLE by The Oracle

    Throughout the off season, St Kilda was touted as an improver and a possible challenger for a top four position mainly off the back of another good trade and draft period at the end of last year. Then in Round 1, the undermanned Saints made a shaky start and almost succumbed to the Giants but they managed to come home from a wet and woolly Sydney with the four points intact. For Round 2, they have a couple of handy players returning so they come into the the game at Marvel Stadium choc

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    A SCRAPPY, SLOPPY SUCCESS by George on the Outer

    After what seemed like an eternity without Footy in Melbourne, the Demons and their fans produced a scrappy, sloppy yet successful return to the MCG. Yet is was against an interstate team from the furthest reaches of the country, but the 21K fans who made it through the gates, was way below expectations for numbers.  Sure it can’t have helped with all the difficulty that Ticketek imposed just to get a ticket, and since you just couldn’t walk up, perhaps the number wasn’t that surprising.

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    UNFINISHED BUSINESS by Whispering Jack

    The Melbourne Football Club has unfinished business with Fremantle after that unexpected loss in their previous clash at Cazaly’s Stadium in Cairns cost it a place in last year’s finals campaign.   Back then, the tired Demons spluttered listlessly through the humid conditions in tropical far North Queensland playing in and losing two games in the space of four days and against two lowly clubs. The end result was much more than an embarrassment for the club given what was at stake at th

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    PRACTICE PUMMELLING by George on the Outer

    Was this a practice for what lay ahead for the Demons in 2021 or was it an outcome to expect because it was used as a true practice game? Those of us on the outside will never know, but a 39 point loss to the Western Bulldogs was a pummelling in anyone’s language. We can draw some consolation from the players that Melbourne put on the field, with Toby Bedford, Jake Bowey, Kade Chandler, James Jordon and Tom Sparrow each getting a guernsey whereas they probably would not normally be in the f

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    A WALK IN THE PAST by Whispering Jack

    On Monday night, the Melbourne Football Club handed out four life memberships. Two of those awards went to men who are long gone. Charles ‘Chubby’ Forrester and James ‘Jas’ Byrne played for the club in the 1870s, even before the Victorian Football Association was formed. The other two are current skipper Max Gawn and swingman Tom McDonald, who almost left the club at the end of the pandemic-affected 2020 season. Some fans might have raised their eyebrows and wondered whether the emphasis on hist

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

×
×
  • Create New...