Jump to content

  • Podcast: Grand Final Preview      

  • Podcast: Gary Pert Interview & Grand Final Preview      

Are the Demons pretenders?



Recommended Posts

It's an interesting situation - I think a few of us need to take a deep breath.

Fact is every club other than the Bulldogs are looking at us are envious of our position. Until next week at least. 

I think the combination of the lack of any large margined dominant wins, together with our fragility as a supporter base, is creating this sense of panic that really isn't justified. Personally I've never had a season where we just...keep on winning - I think it's natural that then when we lose, we get dramatic and think the wheels are falling off. We've known nothing else for our football supporting lives. 

The evidence says we've met every serious challenge this year under a variety of different circumstances

-beat red hot Sydney despite playing poorly ourselves ('winning ugly')

-reversing momentum against one of the best front running aggressive teams in the comp (Brisbane)

-going after the wounded champion (Richmond)

-systematically dismantled the gameplan and contest skills of our nearest competitor (WB)

Whilst we beat Geelong, there were missing a host of their best players and I'm not sure we'd fare as well against their full strength 22.

Unfortunately those who have led the charge - Petracca and Clayton - are immature. There are weeks or months (apparently) where they lose focus, lose application and lose consistency. The forward line is also generally very immature. It's no coincidence that Kozzie's drop in form has corresponded with the team's drop in form.

Barring injuries to May and Lever, our defence will keep us in most games. The rest will turn on the mood and attentiveness of Petracca and Oliver. 

Think about the week to week consistency we get out of May, Lever (who is a very old young man), Hibberd, Gawn, Tom Mac, and the quietly mature Langdon. If we had that sort of consistency of output from our prime movers - Petracca, Oliver, Harmes, Kozzie - we'd look a lot more like a premiership team. 

The forward line needs work in general but I honestly think that lack of maturity is the problem. We just can't rely on our game changers to show up on any given week or even in any given quarter. 

We can fiddle with structure, we can add BB in, etc etc....I can't help thinking that is all academic.

Our fortunes will rise or fall on the mental positioning of our prime movers come finals time. 

  • Like 4
  • Love 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Hannibal Inc. said:

Are Geelong who lost to Adelaide and Brisbane by 10 goals pretenders ?

Are the Dogs, who lost to an undermanned Richmond as well as your ''pretenders'' ?

Are Port, who've lost to Geelong, Brisbane, West Coast and the Dogs, i.e. nearly every top 8 team they've played ?

This year is very close and there's no super team.  Anyone who finishes top 4 can win it and anyone who finishes top 4 will have queries against them.  Melbourne are no super team and there are queries.  We have 6-7 weeks to start playing better football and finish top 4.  If we finish 5th we're cooked.

Timely post H I.

I really rate the GWS and they are back in the 8 where they belong with a top class midfield and the best mid sized forward in the League. Phil Davis still has it too.

We lost to them by 9 points and all of our own doing.  Thursday will nedd to be top notch competitive or else the dogs will be barking a slide is on.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites


7 minutes ago, fr_ap said:

It's an interesting situation - I think a few of us need to take a deep breath.

Fact is every club other than the Bulldogs are looking at us are envious of our position. Until next week at least. 

I think the combination of the lack of any large margined dominant wins, together with our fragility as a supporter base, is creating this sense of panic that really isn't justified. Personally I've never had a season where we just...keep on winning - I think it's natural that then when we lose, we get dramatic and think the wheels are falling off. We've known nothing else for our football supporting lives. 

The evidence says we've met every serious challenge this year under a variety of different circumstances

-beat red hot Sydney despite playing poorly ourselves ('winning ugly')

-reversing momentum against one of the best front running aggressive teams in the comp (Brisbane)

-going after the wounded champion (Richmond)

-systematically dismantled the gameplan and contest skills of our nearest competitor (WB)

Whilst we beat Geelong, there were missing a host of their best players and I'm not sure we'd fare as well against their full strength 22.

Unfortunately those who have led the charge - Petracca and Clayton - are immature. There are weeks or months (apparently) where they lose focus, lose application and lose consistency. The forward line is also generally very immature. It's no coincidence that Kozzie's drop in form has corresponded with the team's drop in form.

Barring injuries to May and Lever, our defence will keep us in most games. The rest will turn on the mood and attentiveness of Petracca and Oliver. 

Think about the week to week consistency we get out of May, Lever (who is a very old young man), Hibberd, Gawn, Tom Mac, and the quietly mature Langdon. If we had that sort of consistency of output from our prime movers - Petracca, Oliver, Harmes, Kozzie - we'd look a lot more like a premiership team. 

The forward line needs work in general but I honestly think that lack of maturity is the problem. We just can't rely on our game changers to show up on any given week or even in any given quarter. 

We can fiddle with structure, we can add BB in, etc etc....I can't help thinking that is all academic.

Our fortunes will rise or fall on the mental positioning of our prime movers come finals time. 

Correct,  We have a system and the players to implement it to beat any side.  Now it's all about concentration.  Its does not take a big drop off to see teams challenge us.  Looking  at this season, mentally we are ready for top 8 sides, part of team seems to drop off against bottom 8 sides.  

Yesterday we almost overran them, that last quarter we were in control and fitter  but couldn't buy goal.  Lots of attempts including shots that missed (Short or wide).  It shows the team can pressure when they switch on.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don’t know what we are pretending to do?

We’ve got a game plan, and it’s very obvious for all to see. We’ve got good players, which is also very obvious for all to see.

We are down on confidence - particularly through the middle and going forward. Even that is interesting as our 2 most prominent forwards - McDonald and Fritsch, played well yesterday.

We’ve won a lot of games ugly this year, unlike some other teams which win by 10 goals or not at all. We are happy to grind.

I wouldn’t dare call May, Oliver, Gawn, Petracca, Lever, Salem or Langdon ‘Pretenders’. That core group give as much as they can. TMac is worthy of being in that group too. We’ve got incredible talent coming through in Jackson, Pickett, Rivera, Jordan and Sparrow.

We are down on confidence and I suspect some of our prime movers are carrying injuries. Get our tails back up and some reward for effort going forward and we can, and have, beaten the best.

Have a little faith.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think we are pretenders. You don't get to 12 and 3 being a pretender and also all losses by small margins. Last I looked we are still top for at last a few hours and this season is very even. Win enough coming home to stay top 4 and anything can happen however I would like it to start next week please.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

After winning the first 9 games of the season I was thinking that this could be our year finally!

Even though we where able to beat the Bulldogs and Brisbane our 3 losses have been very disappointing. Yesterday and against Collingwood we looked tired and lacked the run that we has early in the season. Sides are putting a lot more pressure on our midfield leading to more rushed disposal and less clean entries into the forward line.

The form of a number of players has dropped off yet the selection committee doesn’t seem to want to make changes. BBB should have played yesterday to give a target in the forward to kick to. He would have 3 or 4 goals at least. Our kicking for goal is terrible. Why was TMac kicking low percentage bananas yesterday instead of kicking drop punts...so frustrating! Ultimately If we had of kicked straight yesterday we would have won. Fingers crossed we can turn our form around otherwise it will be another wasted season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We obviously don't get up mentally for games against bottom teams, but do we really think that will be an issue in finals?

We've beaten all of the top 8 teams we've played comfortably, with the exception of Sydney. But we need to finish top 4 to maximise our chances.

Would bot be surprised to see us come out and beat Port. It's the adelaide/Hawthorn games I'm worried about, and how they will affect our top 4 chances.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If the form of our past 3 games (4 weeks) is our remaining season standard, then absolutely and sadly, we are pretenders. I doubt we are any chance at all of top 2 (fixture tells us this) so the challenge must now be top 4. 5th to 8th is not winning the premiership. The troubling thing is the length of this form slump, which suggests to me fatigue - mental certainly (lots of young guys) and physically arguably (lots of young guys). If it IS fatigue of either kind, we’re almost undoubtedly stuffed, and I just can’t see what else could make our last 3 games bottom 6 standard without that problem being addressed. And I sure don’t believe BBB is the difference. My greatest fear is that if we get touched up by Port on Thursday, confidence will ebb, and we go into free-fall. None of the obvious top 3 (Dogs, Cats, Lions) have shown the same week to week fragility of this 3 game run. Port ARE flat track bullies and front-runners, which makes it the perfect scenario for them on Thursday. There is no question it’s our season defining game. Lose, and there is absolutely no doubt in my MFCSS mind that we’re done. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Definitely not pretenders.  This is a tough competition.  On any day any side can beat anyone else.  We are one of about half a dozen really capable teams - Geelong, Bulldogs, Brisbane, Port and the Swans are in that group with us.  Then you have Richmond, WCE and GWS who on their day are also very capable but not as reliable as the top 6.  This season could well be like 2016.  The dogs won 15 games, finished 7th after a bit of a lull in the back end of the year but put it together for finals.  I think our game stacks up and the results prove it.  We have lost three games by a combined total of 27 points.  That's an average of 9 points per game losing margin.  We could easily be 15-0.  As long as we win 4 more, we'll be top 4 and a real chance.  Interstate travel doesn't bother us.  We are still right in this.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

The next  7 games will  confirm either way!

What the competition has shown that all teams in the top 8 have had flat periods with heavy loses inc today WC 90points, perhaps this is our period and saving grace is our biggest loss is 17 points so our defence is in good shape.

Though as MFC supporters we have trust issues!

 

Edited by Demonsone
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Webber said:

If the form of our past 3 games (4 weeks) is our remaining season standard, then absolutely and sadly, we are pretenders. I doubt we are any chance at all of top 2 (fixture tells us this) so the challenge must now be top 4. 5th to 8th is not winning the premiership. The troubling thing is the length of this form slump, which suggests to me fatigue - mental certainly (lots of young guys) and physically arguably (lots of young guys). If it IS fatigue of either kind, we’re almost undoubtedly stuffed, and I just can’t see what else could make our last 3 games bottom 6 standard without that problem being addressed. And I sure don’t believe BBB is the difference. My greatest fear is that if we get touched up by Port on Thursday, confidence will ebb, and we go into free-fall. None of the obvious top 3 (Dogs, Cats, Lions) have shown the same week to week fragility of this 3 game run. Port ARE flat track bullies and front-runners, which makes it the perfect scenario for them on Thursday. There is no question it’s our season defining game. Lose, and there is absolutely no doubt in my MFCSS mind that we’re done. 

Lose it badly and I agree.

But if we turn it around and play a good game but lose a tight one, I think they will be able to recognise the change in form. Losing an interstate match off a short break to another top 4 contender isnt a disastor. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, The heart beats true said:

Have a little faith.

Or don't have faith and post on and on and on and on and on about it, because I guess that lowers the posters on expectations so they can't get disappointed the next time.

Anyway, some posters make me think of 'bottom orifices' (that begin with a, but gets censored on here) and more specifically sphincters....

Anyway...that was a rather long segue to get to my point... 

Sir Alex Ferguson would often talk about 'squeeky bum time' towards the end of the premiership season...

Generally this team is very good in 'squeeky bum time' in games- the supporters (understandably, after generations of pain) are more prone to losing their mind in 'squeeky bum time'.

Edited by Engorged Onion
Link to comment
Share on other sites

38 minutes ago, Demon17 said:

Timely post H I.

I really rate the GWS and they are back in the 8 where they belong with a top class midfield and the best mid sized forward in the League. Phil Davis still has it too.

We lost to them by 9 points and all of our own doing.  Thursday will nedd to be top notch competitive or else the dogs will be barking a slide is on.

Well said

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Something Nathan Jones said a few years ago still resonates with me. He was talking about how many of the younger players at the club still didn't understand momentum shifts during games and how to go about combating or capitalising those. The likes of Vince and Lewis were a breath of fresh air with their experience and obviously coming from more successful and professional clubs.

We've come a long way in dealing with momentum shifts during games.

Now however, we're having to deal with momentum shifts in the season as a whole. We haven't been in a position like this and therefore, the players and probably coaching staff have to work out the best way to wrestle back some momentum going into the pointy end of the season. We're definitely not pretenders in terms of list quality and coaching nous, but we absolutely need to get this right or we will fizzle out.

Mark Williams is going to be instrumental IMO.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Sir Why You Little said:

I just think opposition Coaches have worked us out. The run from the middle has dried up

We have serious work to do

Thursday night will be a real test

Not only our run from the middle to a non existent forward line, but now opposition teams 

know now how to not enter theirs, ie high kicks because either May,Lever or Max are going to mark it and send it straight back.

They will be all instructed to keep it low and the forwards to lead up. Bit like what we need. Can't remember who it was in the goal square standing behind his opponent, pointing at the goals instead of leading into space, and there was a lot of it, when Hunt did his run with no one presenting for him to kick it to 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Supreme_Demon said:

I don't usually like to start negative topics like this.

But the question needs to be asked....are the Demons pretenders this year in 2021?

I understand we are 12 wins and only 3 losses. A fantastic effort so far.

We have definitely improved from last year in 2020.

However, we need to win games we are expected to win against teams lower than us on the ladder.

We haven't done anything at all yet. There are no new Premiership cups in our cabinet and the 1964 Premiership cup has probably collected a lot of dust on it.

Losing to the Giants was absolutely not good enough.

It reminds me of the shock loss to the Sydney Swans in 1994. 

Why Ben Brown wasn't selected to play as full forward for the Demons yesterday against the Giants was a bizarre decision. It was a huge selection error in my opinion.

Anyway, it isn't just about the match yesterday. Our form the last few weeks has been poor and I hope we do something as a circuit breaker against Port Power who we play next week over in Adelaide on Thursday night.

The match against Port Power is definitely season defining and after a disappointing loss against the Giants it is crucial that we bounce back.

 

If the Demons don't then we are kidding ourselves if we think we are a chance to win the Premiership this year.

I honestly hope I am wrong....it must be the MFCSS that has mentally scarred me over many years I guess?

C'mon Demons! Bounce back against Port Power and prove to all the naysayers that we are NOT pretenders!

It's a possibility that we are 'pretenders' as we lack the courage - reliably - to blood new and fresh talent and opportunities - where our 'leaders' in the FD play and replay the same old, ever-hopefuls in preference to real-time alternatives. Our talent bases do not flourish as these should. The processes applied wear out our highly skilled into various extensions of form losses and player fatigue. Our match day competitiveness - even in good times, such as now - diminish and wither on the vine - even in good times, such as now. The talent pool and its generation wanes, so we resign ourselves to starting again. I always thought that the pheonix was supposed to rise from the ashes?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Sydee said:

Please - BB played in the twos and didn’t do anything to suggest he would have made any difference at all

we are really clutching at straws thinking he is the saviour of our forward line problems 

did nothing last year

had virtually no pre-season this year and so far has been pretty damn underwhelming in the VFL and AFL

could he possibly improve - maybe but atm he’s showing nothing to suggest he can add to what is already a pretty dismal and impotent forward line 

In his first VFL game in a month last week, he kicked 5 goals and 2 assists. Define underwhelming….

 

No one knows what the story was with him last night. Seems to have spent a lot of time off the ground. Photos of him in a track jacket etc. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know it’s beside the point but I don’t like the word “pretenders” in this context. Much like another thread that asked do you trust MFC. These words imply deliberate intent. The players and coaching staff don’t intend for things to go south. 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1. “Bring on all the pretenders!” Taylor Swift

2. Cause the Melbourne players gonna play, play, play, play, play
And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate
Baby, I'm just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake
I shake it off, I shake it off (Whoo-hoo-hoo)  - Again, Taylor Swift

I think there's something here for everyone.

 

 

  • Love 1
  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Return to Glory said:

1. “Bring on all the pretenders!” Taylor Swift

2. Cause the Melbourne players gonna play, play, play, play, play
And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate
Baby, I'm just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake
I shake it off, I shake it off (Whoo-hoo-hoo)  - Again, Taylor Swift

I think there's something here for everyone.

 

 

Some of your finest Steve...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, Kick_It_To_Pickett said:

In his first VFL game in a month last week, he kicked 5 goals and 2 assists. Define underwhelming….

 

No one knows what the story was with him last night. Seems to have spent a lot of time off the ground. Photos of him in a track jacket etc. 

Did you watch that game where he kicked 5 ? 
 

One was an absolute gift over the top from AVB , another one was a very good kick to advantage where he was able to run onto the ball 15 out

His opponent looked seriously unfit to me and would have 20 goals kicked on him by a decent AFL standard key forward. 

Sorry but he wasn’t that impressive and as much as I’m not a massive Weid fan I thought his performance was actually better albeit in a different role 


 

 

Edited by Sydee
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Match Previews, Reports & Articles  

    THE ICING ON THE QUAKE by Whispering Jack

    It’s not Christmas yet but if the Melbourne wins its last game of the 2021 season, then many of its fans will be celebrating early. There already are some parts of our town where the pending festivity is preordained. Houses are decked out with red and blue banners and streamers, some of which appeared as early as last Saturday week, on the morning after the Demons’ magnificent 83-point crushing of Geelong in their preliminary final at Optus Stadium. While it’s great to see the numbers of lo

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    CAT SKINNING by George On The Outer

    When they defeated the Geelong Cats in the 2021 AFL Preliminary Final on Friday night in Perth, Melbourne proved that there is more than one way to skin those cats.  They did it in the ruck and in the middle, they did it in the forward line, they did it in defence and around the ground, but importantly, each and every player a Demon guernsey spent his night at Optus Stadium skinning an opponent. Following the after-the-siren win against Geelong in Round 23, there was an expectation of

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    THE POINTY END by The Oracle

    The AFL’s two oldest clubs, Melbourne and Geelong, face off on Friday evening in a sudden death Preliminary Final. It’s a game that promises plenty in terms of fascination and intrigue as a result of the rivalry that’s been building between the teams over recent encounters that have been tight struggles which have gone to the wire with two of them decided by after-the-siren goals. The added touch of mystery attached to this week’s meeting comes by virtue of the fact that it’s going to take

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    THE VFL YEAR THAT NEVER WAS by KC from Casey

    The rising case numbers and the continuing lockdowns in Victoria and NSW spelled doom for the 2021 VFL season which went through a slow, painful demise before its recent official cancellation. After weeks of indecision, the AFL decided to pull the plug on the season with the 10-0 Bulldogs recognised as minor premier, but without a premiership cup and without awarding the J.J. Liston Medal for the best and fairest VFL player. It was somewhat fortuitous for the integrity of the competition t

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Casey Articles

    TAMING THE LIONS by George On The Outer

    With nine finals debutants in the side, the Melbourne Football Club had a daunting assignment ahead of it in the First Qualifying Final — to overcome the competition’s highest scoring side, the Brisbane Lions. In the end, the Demons accomplished the task by putting the bite on their opponents on their way to taming the Lions and recording a 33 point win that propelled them into one the two Preliminary Finals of 2021.   It was one of those debutants, Luke Jackson, who put the bite in more

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    RETURN TO NEVERLAND by Whispering Jack

    The greatest Demon A HIGHWAY OF DEMONS by Whispering Jack CHAPTER SIXTEEN - RETURN TO NEVERLAND  I have a six year old grandson who recently took up the family tradition of following the Demons. He had his first taste of the game a few years ago when he went to the “G” with his parents to watch the 107-point massacre of Carlton and he went to another game in the following season which was also a W for the Dees. But his appetite for the club has grown exponentially this year and wh

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Special Features 13

    METAMORPHOSIS by Whispering Jack

    I’ve always believed that when the home and away matches come to an end, the football season takes on a completely different shape and character. During the regular season, each team’s goals progress as the weeks pass and if you’re good enough to survive and make the grade, the situation changes. The comparison can be made with the life cycle of a butterfly going through stages from egg to larva to caterpillar, cocoon and in the end to a bright and colourful creature that emerges from darkness i

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    STEALING THE CATS’ CREAM by George On The Outer

    They were leading by 44 points well into the third quarter of a game to decide the minor premier, having kicked nine unanswered goals. The Cats were about to lap up their bowl of cream, dreaming of next week but the Demons led by Max Gawn had other ideas. In a stunning finish, they stole the game from under them to claim the plaudits as best team and top of ladder position. In a remarkable game, it all came down to Max having to kick the winning goal after the final siren, something which s

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    SKIN THE CATS by Whispering Jack

    The task ahead for the Demons as they wend their way down the Princes Freeway to Geelong on Saturday night will be to skin the Cats. For them to come away with the points from this game would mark an historic occasion for the club as it will finish on top of the ladder for the first time since its last premiership year, 1964. And it was in that year, that a trip to Corio Bay to meet the reigning premiers in Round 12, was one of the catalysts for Melbourne’s surge to the flag. It was a top o

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    REACH FOR THE STARS by George on the Outer

    It was a game of great significance for the Melbourne Football Club. A win would see them keep top spot on the ladder with one round remaining. To achieve top place in the Round for Reach when we are all inspired to “Be Like Jim” and reach for the stars was a great way of honouring one of our heroes. All the better given that it was done by way of an emphatic 41 point win against Adelaide! It is worth remembering that, but for the umpiring mistake in the previous encounter with the Crows, t

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    TICKETS PLEASE by The Oracle

    A lot of water has passed under Princes Bridge in the five years since Melbourne last met Adelaide on the MCG. The Crows were riding high at the time while the Demons were mid-table and scrambling for a win to stay in the race for the finals. The 30,000 fans who had tickets to the game were thoroughly entertained by a close, high scoring affair that ended in tears for fans of the home team. Not even an eight-goal second term could help them.   Times have changed.    In the fi

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    ELECTRIFYING by George On The Outer

    What more can they throw at the Demons of 2021? Covid restrictions, hubs, aircraft circling between airports before landing for games and now a match stopped for 30 minutes to give a flagging opponent its second wind? To date, none of those distractions has swayed the team from their winning objectives. The game against West Coast in Perth can be marked on their report card as another positive outcome after yet another test. There was much at stake for both sides.  Melbourne had t

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

  • Tell a friend

    Love Demonland? Tell a friend!

×
×
  • Create New...