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robbiefrom13's Achievements

Mighty Demon

Mighty Demon (3/10)



  1. we'd slaughtered Collingwood in the second semi-final, and it seemed to 14-year-old me a bit of an anti-climax that the grand final was a slog. Melbourne winning was normal enough - I wanted it to be glory... I listened with a mate who was Collingwood. Felt a bit sorry for him when Crompton broke ranks and won the game. But it stood to reason we would be better than Collingwood - Melbourne was a whole city, not just a suburb; and just on the jumpers, never mind anything else - black-and-white was TV, as compared to the movies, and surely we had then as we still have the best looking jumper by a mile. Regal! At school, you could hold your head up being a Melbourne supporter - even when we lost a game, we were still obviously the best team. We had Barassi. We almost always ended up the winners... Following Melbourne since then has been a wonderful ride. Builds real character - not just complacent arrogance. If we win this year, it won't be anything like 1964 was. It'll be infinitely deeper and better, I think. Obviously I couldn't have known enough about the psychology of the players back then, to really compare, but considering what it has taken to escape two generations of failure and in its place build this present charge, what we are seeing now has to be a huge human drama playing out. Brian Dixon may have been conned by Norm Smith into fearing every week that he would be dropped, but our current team are coming off genuine longterm grounds for being unable to believe - yet look at them! Spectacular turn-around - and huge credit to all of them. And their coaches. This an unfolding achievement that will be way beyond 1964.
  2. clean ball-handling, and the ability to stop or turn on a sixpence, made Robbie virtually untackleable. Heavier-built by miles, but Petracca does have quite a bit of those attributes. Watching the old footage shows how Wilson had quite a bit of that too. Exactly the things Viney and Jones don't have. But then Viney has a bit of the Barassi unstoppability. One of my strongest memories of Barassi was of him marking a drop-kick probably less that 10 metres from where it had been kicked. A full-blooded low kick that at full stretch Barassi just reached. it stuck in his grip and smashed him backwards onto the turf, as though he'd been shot by a cannon-ball. He didn't let go of the ball. it's imprinted on my mind as much as that famous shot of him airborne, having just kicked, with one arm stretched out to the side and the look on his face - unstoppable. But Robbie was a scalpel among axes. Pure poetry, finesse, instinct for what was going on. He struck in the split-second right moment. Timing as perfect as that isn't likely to come around again.
  3. If we got him back, one thing would be completely different to last time we had him - he would not be being white-anted by Fremantle trying to sell him an unrealistic heaven in Perth. So he got sold something - welcome to the advertising age! If he came back, he would not be constantly having his eyes drawn away. We might see a single-focused Jesse - and not the disillusioned Jesse he appears to have been in Perth. Plus - Harley Bennell came within a whisker of making it. Why can't Jesse actually do it? If he's keen, and MFC is keen, it's an absolute no-brainer to welcome him back. The potential win is so great, we would have to take the chance.
  4. no comparison - keep Jetta; Jones no loss.
  5. I would be very surprised to hear they were not delighted to welcome him back. They shared a lot. Also, he played some very good football for us. He may need to behave himself and perhaps that would not be as easy for him as it is for others, but there's a lot of different types of people and Hoges is not somewhere way off the scale... Carl Ditterich returned. Hardeman. Donny Williams. It happens - and with success in those cases. Just one more talented player to be properly harnessed for the big dance. Which the players surely would understand - and recognise what he brings for them all.
  6. When in their 'wisdom' the brains trust turfed Jack aside, Roos said, "You need players like that'" and "he won half a dozen games off his own boot in the past couple of seasons." One against Hawthorn, in the last quarter he hit Pederson on the lead with a bullet-pass, he put it 55 metres onto Tyson's chest in the pocket, and he hoovered up the ball right out of Lewis' hands in the centre and drove it forward for another goal. Three goals in 5 minutes thanks to Watts - sheer class. The number of times he took saving marks on the last line, at the end of quarters... I always thought you could judge a coach by his ability and willingness to recognise and make full use of great talent. The two outstanding mediocrities of man-management in the past twenty years were with Watts and Jurrah. Some people can only paint by numbers. These guys were fabulous talents, who coaches tried to squeeze down into their petty one-size-fits-all plans. I will always remember the QB winning goal, watching it from that forward pocket - it was a moment of vast significance, heroic and symbolic of so much - drama of the highest order. Exhilirating beyond compare. I remember Jack outside the boundary on the members' side, taking his shot - a huge high looping ball that just curved and curved home - and you knew, of course Wattsy would get it. I remember Jones refusing to hpnour his leads. I got a phone call out of the blue one night a few years ago, and it was Max Gawn doing the phone-around. I'd already renewed as it happened, but we had a bit of a chat anyway. He was a young feller at the time, and out injured. I asked how he was coming along. I said being from Tasmania I don't get to that many games, but I'd seen Robbie Flower's first game and I'd seen Jack Watts' first game, and I tell you Max, I said, I saw your first game too, and I reckon I'll remember it too. In the end Jack didn't achieve as highly, but boy I loved seeing him play. Fabulous human beings all of them. Fabulous thing, to have followed these guys, regardless of the outcome.. Jack Watts is a memorable and real part of the story of the Melbourne Footy Club, and i got wonderful pleasure from supporting him, and believing in his skills and his generosity. There's more than success in being a supporter. .
  7. Half the country is unloading their wisdom about Dan Andrews. All over the western world people are publicly protesting against the rules imposed to stop us infecting and killing each other. There's a lot of spur-of-the-moment full-head-of-steam stupidity around. How do we know what it's been feeling like for Harley Bennell? Lots of people do erratic things. So he's done similar things before? Jake Lever has dropped marks before. We've all posted rubbish at one time or another. We can hardly say that the person having the capacity or tendency to make the mistake makes it a worse mistake - it's at most just likelier. Give the guy a break! MFC is trying to put together a winning team of footballers. Harley Bennell is a bit not-dead-centre perhaps, but he can play football. How much damage has he done to anything other than PR? I cannot get my head around the reasoning, the holier-than-thou shock-horror being expressed. Football might have saved Liam Jurrah, or any one of the players who subsequently were found to be fighting depression etc. Thank goodness for football, where some lucky people have gifts that might clear them a pathway through their own demons. I hope there is wisdom at the club, and not just cringing from the public commentary, when they weigh this up.
  8. This is such nonsense. What you'd do is you'd shut yourself. And all of us can remember pieces of play from Petracca, for example, from games right through the year. Some of those games, just one piece of play, if that's what you meant to be saying.
  9. At the risk of further engorging the Onion, I would just like to say that respect is neither earned nor demanded - it is given. Asking why it is given may prompt the thought that it is earned, but in the end, it is given - because there are plenty of examples of people or things deserving respect where respect is nevertheless not given. Respect only comes into play when someone gives it. When you make room for the old lady struggling along the footpath, or the young one with a load, you are not mentally making assumptions about the sort of life they've lived, nor are you admiring the attributes which you assume led them to still be alive - you are simply giving. I imagine (pace, EO - it's just to put a speculative thought on a forum) our players respect the coach, because he is the coach. I imagine respecting the coach must be an almost unquestionable fundamental for a top-level sportsperson - you give respect because you need to; you have to trust the coach. In a team sport, it would be betraying your team-mates - breaking ranks - to harbour negative thoughts about the coach. Grounds for deciding you will move on if you can. Short of thinking that way, you must go on giving respect because it is essential to the common goal to do so. Our players are clearly frustrated, but I doubt they are blaming Goodwin,. Listening to Petracca the other night, he was struggling to know what to blame. Move the respect aside and they might perhaps see more clearly - though likely at the cost of feeling guilt and losing all confidence. Respect isn't the issue here - it's the management who keep Goodwin in a place where he has to be respected. The players are young men doing the right thing to the best of their ability, and I can see how that loyalty could playing a part in their underperforming.
  10. everyone charges in presumably because the mantra is contest - we will be more into contesting than anyone else. DUMB!
  11. Petracca has no idea what's wrong - but he should have. He's an instinctive one-touch powerhouse - he doesn't need to be told. Yet he can't say anything. This is Neeld all over again - squashing instinct and response out of the players, and telling them their failure is their own fault (because they aren't doing what the megalomaniacal ignoramus of a coach says). Petracca describing himself as boring is mindboggling - he's been brainwashed. But, from where he stands and in context of his talent and instinct, boring is what it is. Even if it's Goodwin's word. I used to be a school-teacher. I'll tell you one thing - the day you tell a student they're boring, you have lost them for all time.
  12. the thing is, I think, people are all a mixture of things - and we get the idea of "the dominant story", when that's only part of it. The Robert Muir story in the paper the other day put up some of the "alternative stories" about him. A lot of us only knew the "mad dog" story, which Northey rightly (wisely) called out early on. You see things confirming the dominant story, and it becomes the person's identity. Those in a position to influence opinion need to be making sure dominant stories don't lock people into deep pigeonholes with no way out. Coaches can strengthen players by drawing out their alternative stories - and actively opposing negative dominant stories; at the same time, they won't help anyone by trying to force onto a player an alternative story that is not part of that player's make-up. St Kilda should have seen the negative dominant story of their new guy, and realised how essential it was going to be to counteract that - his talent was surely enough to have created a whole new dominant story. Jurrah was characterised as the Warlpiri Warrior, and the Jurrahcane - not helpful, with hindsight. His particular skillset could have been made the main story, and should have been. Harping on about defensive skills when he was clearly the most electrifying offensive force in the competition - it was denying his identity, and pushing away what was the dominant story that brought him to Melbourne. Please let us value Harley Bennell for who he really is. And all of us refuse these racist stereotyping stories that reduce players to categorised clones. Not everyone is good at adopting such a required dominant story. Football teams try to make the most of their players, even though there can be a mixture of parts to the player. In among the various stories of each individual, there can be stories that are valid and troubling, and needing intelligent care. Makes you realise what a wonderful person Robbie Flower was - brilliantly skilled, modest (claimed he was overpaid for what he did!) and always with a smile and time for anyone, unshakable optimist, team-oriented, loyal forever... Hard to think of a negative story. But Robbie Muir shared some of those attributes. People have a mixture of parts, and good management recognises this and brings out the best. Roos was skilled there. "Sink or swim" is no management strategy - and nor is "you made your bed - you'll have to lie in it." Good management will draw the person into their better bits - they are equally as true - and we unfortunately don't always get to choose which bit of us becomes the dominant story. Community has a responsibility. Sorry, too long.
  13. Liam Jurrah telling the coach week after week, no, I don't feel ready. That never rang true, to me. I thought he was lacking someone doing what Lyon did with Farmer - and I don't know whether I'm being racist thinking it. Jimma reached out that way when he was well, early on. But maybe what's needed is for clubs to set up affirmative action - counteracting the systemic bias that indigenous people live under. Anticipating it. Which I suppose could be patronising, too - so difficult... Melbourne worked on this, with Jetta and so on - brothers, connecting - but there can be the divide in a set-up like that, too. An aboriginal friend of mine told me once, all he really wanted was for us to be like regular mates; like, just mates...
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