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Found 6 results

  1. Your votes for today's game please - 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
  2. The selectors have made four changes. The question is whether changes to the team makeup is what’s necessary to end the current losing streak?
  3. 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 the ball well by hand and foot and usually found a target in front of goal. But something happened to them between the end of 2018 and the start of the following season. They simply lost the ability to score. The team remained capable of getting the ball out of the middle at stoppages and more often than their opponents has had players lurking with intent inside the 50 metre forward arc but the scoring just dried up. They no longer had the polish to grab and convert the opportunities that came their way during the course of a game. An example was their encounter against the Suns at Metricon Stadium in Round 8 last year when they fell in at the last moment by a point after scoring just eight goals in a game that marked a 95 point downturn in form. And that downturn appears to have continued to the point where this week’s opponents have three wins and a handsome percentage advantage over a Melbourne that has a solitary one point win on the board to date. Moreover, the pundits are saying that the club’s season is already doomed — along with those of Adelaide, Fremantle, Sydney, North Melbourne and Carlton. Well, I’m willing to cut the Dees some slack pending team selection this week. After all, their three defeats to date have come at the hands of sides that won 15, 16 and 16 games last year including the 2019 premier and the end-of-season-ladder-leader and the 2018 premier on their own near-impregnable dung hill. So it’s not over yet as long as Melbourne can get a bit of momentum and pressure going as it did in the 1½ quarters of real football in the four games it has played so far this season. The change of environment to a place north of the border and away from their fellow New Mexicans is exactly what the doctor ordered for the squad of players sent up to Sin City for the next 4 to 6 weeks — as long as there’s no similar outbreak in the team hotel up there to match the one experienced in the places down here where the state government so graciously hosted returning overseas travellers (memo: contact the head of hotel security first thing tomorrow morning). Gold Coast superstar Matt Rowell is conveniently out of the way this week leaving only one red head on the field in Clayton Oliver capable of taking the game by the throat. And with the impending selection promised by Melbourne of some forwards believed to be capable of kicking with a measure of accuracy rather than spraying it all over the place, I’m confident that this week’s team will be stung into action against a youthful side that hasn’t travelled well in the past and will hopefully find themselves blinded enough by the bright lights of Kings Cross to fall on their swords north of our border. Melbourne by 36 points. THE GAME Melbourne v Gold Coast Suns at Giants Stadium Saturday 11 July, 2020 at 6.05pm HEAD TO HEAD Overall - Melbourne 10 wins Gold Coast Suns 3 wins At Giants Stadium - Melbourne 0 wins Gold Coast Suns 0 wins Past five matches - Melbourne 5 wins Gold Coast Suns 0 wins The Coaches - Goodwin 3 wins Dew 0 wins MEDIA TV - Fox Footy Channel - Live at 6.00pm RADIO - TBA THE LAST TIME THEY MET Melbourne 8.13.61 defeated Gold Coast Suns 9.6.60 at Metricon Stadium, Round 8 2019 After a dour struggle all day in which the Demons held the ascendency, the Suns edged ahead by a goal with less than a minute on the clock. Marty Hore came to the party with a long goal and Tom McDonald chipped in with a point just before the siren. Never in doubt. The Demons had a eye on a finals berth and stormed their way to a 96 point win on the back of a nine goal final quarter. Jesse Hogan (4 goals) and James Harmes (3) were on fire up forward and the Demons had winners in nearly every position on the ground. THE TEAMS MELBOURNE FB Jay Lockhart Steven May Oscar McDonald HB Christian Salem Jake Lever Michael Hibberd C Ed Langdon Clayton Oliver Aaron vandenBerg HF Mitch Hannan Sam Weideman Angus Brayshaw FF Jake Melksham Tom McDonald Harley Bennell FOL Max Gawn Christian Petracca Jack Viney I/C Bayley Fritsch James Harmes Neville Jetta Kysaiah Pickett EMG Luke Jackson Nathan Jones Joel Smith Adam Tomlinson IN Harley Bennell Neville Jetta Oscar McDonald Sam Weideman OUT Jayden Hunt (omitted) Trent Rivers (omitted) Joel Smith (omitted) Adam Tomlinson (omitted) GOLD COAST SUNS FB Connor Budarick Sam Collins Jack Lukosius HB Pearce Hanley Charlie Ballard Jarrod Harbrow C Lachie Weller Hugh Greenwood Brandon Ellis HF Noah Anderson Sam Day Alex Sexton FF Izak Rankine Ben King Ben Ainsworth FOL Jarrod Witts David Swallow Touk Miller I/C Jack Bowes Brayden Fiorini Nick Holman Darcy MacPherson EMG Wil Powell Jeremy Sharp Zac Smith Peter Wright IN Brayden Fiorini Izak Rankine OUT Wil Powell (omitted) Matt Rowell (injured) NEW Izak Rankine Injury List: Round 6 Charlie Spargo (ankle) – Test Marty Hore (toe and quad) – indefinite Harry Petty (groin) – indefinite Kade Kolodjashnij (head) – indefinite Aaron Nietschke (knee) – season
  4. It was way back in May 2019 GOLD COAST SUNS B Jarrod Harbrow Sam Collins Charlie Ballard HB Pearce Hanley Jack Hombsch Lachie Weller C Ben Ainsworth Nick Holman Wil Powell HF Alex Sexton Peter Wright Sean Lemmens F Darcy MacPherson Josh Corbett Jack Bowes FOLL Jarrod Witts Jack Martin David Swallow I/C Jack Lukosius Touk Miller Anthony Miles Jordan Murdoch EMG Will Brodie George Horlin-Smith Jesse Joyce Ben King IN Pearce Hanley Sean Lemmens Jack Lukosius Lachie Weller OUT Brayden Fiorini (injured) George Horlin-Smith (omitted) Jesse Joyce (omitted) Aaron Young (injured) MELBOURNE B Jordan Lewis Sam Frost Michael Hibberd HB Nathan Jones Oscar McDonald Christian Salem C Bayley Fritsch Jack Viney Billy Stretch HF James Harmes Tom McDonald Jay Lockhart F Jeff Garlett Declan Keilty Jake Melksham FOLL Max Gawn Angus Brayshaw Clayton Oliver I/C Marty Hore Jayden Hunt Christian Petracca Josh Wagner EMG Alex Neal-Bullen Harrison Petty Tim Smith Corey Wagner IN Jack Viney OUT Alex Neal-Bullen (omitted)
  5. SNAPSHOT by Whispering Jack It was reported on the Demons website during the week that Melbourne coach Mark Neeld said that in last week's game against Carlton his team displayed a glimpse of its future. Certainly, at times, there were snapshots of the way that were moving our football club forward absolutely no question, he said. There was a snapshot there lets enjoy the journey and get on board with these young boys. The boys who took the field on the weekend, Ive got a feeling that theyre going to be around for quite a while. This comes on the back of a 61 point defeat in which Carlton doubled Melbourne's score and, apart from the first 8½ minutes, the Blues were well in control of the game. The basis of the glimpse into future claim stems from the raw statistic of games played by the players making up the respective sides. Carlton not only doubled Melbourne's score but it also had almost double the number of games in its players' legs (more than double once Demon co-captain Jack Grimes broke his collarbone and had to be subbed off for first gamer Dean Kent). They fielded a team featuring 1109 games experience to the Blues 2165. With eight players coming away from the game with 68 games in total, the lack of experience was plainly obvious and, while that group contained a couple of tall lads, the deficiency in size and physical strength was a clear factor that enabled Carlton to break away at any time it looked as if there was a remote threat to the five goal lead it had developed in a short time during the first quarter (and yet the lead was just a little over six goals at one stage early in the last). The eight players and their games played were: ■ James Strauss (19) ■ Jake Spencer (17) ■ Michael Evans (8) ■ Max Gawn (7) ■ Matt Jones (6) ■ Dean Terlich (5) ■ Jack Viney (5) ■ Dean Kent (1) Neeld, himself lacking in coaching experience with less than 30 games under his belt, has constantly raised the inexperience factor in explaining his team's slow development and poor results over his tenure but we live in times when immediate results are the order of the day and Ken Hinkley is showing him up over at Port Adelaide with a 5-1 win loss record at an equally inexperienced club. On Sunday, the moment of truth will arrive. The Gold Coast Suns are also inexperienced although they do have the best player in the competition and a man whose skills and ability overshadow all else that will be on the field of play. As a young coach Neeld has had to contend with far more than most would on entering this most demanding profession and although his toughest assignment has always been the need to turn around what for want of a better description has become a dysfunctional culture at the club after years of incompetence in the areas of recruiting, player development and coaching, he faces the prospect of being eaten up by the very same culture if his team is unable to match it with a team of equally experienced counterparts. In the absence of Jack Grimes for several weeks due to his injury and in light of Jack Trengove's form slump, Nathan Jones has been given a co-captain's role. He has already shown great leadership without the captain tag and he has big shoulders. One hopes that he can continue to lead by the example of endeavour and strength he has routinely shown through the dark times, as otherwise, the critics will continue to harp on and call for his coach's head. It doesn't seem to be fair that a coach should not be given time to see his plan through but thats the AFL for you. If Neelds team is unable to show some more concrete and definite signs of moving forward, the jungle drums will keep on beating and the calls for a replacement coach will continue to be heard more loudly. The snapshot of the future might be a very ugly one for the coach and his players a little after 7.00pm on Sunday. THE GAME Melbourne v Gold Coast at the MCG Sunday 12 May 2013 at 4.40pm. HEAD TO HEAD Overall Melbourne 3 wins Gold Coast 0 wins MCG Melbourne 2 wins Gold Coast 0 wins Since 2000 Melbourne 3 wins Gold Coast 0 wins The Coaches Neeld 1 win McKenna 0 wins MEDIA TV Fox Footy Channel (live) Radio ABC THE LAST TIME THEY MET Melbourne 16.12.108 defeated Gold Coast Suns 9.12.66 in round 19, 2012 at the MCG. The Demons had a great opening term booting six unanswered goals and spent the rest of the time coasting to win by 42 points, Brad Green booted five goals and Jeremy Howe and Nathan Jones had field days against an opposition that only had two performers you know who and Harley Bennell. THE BETTING Melbourne $2.10 to win Gold Coast $1.77 to win THE TEAMS MELBOURNE Backs Lynden Dunn James Frawley Dean Terlich Half backs Daniel Nicholson Tom McDonald Colin Garland Centreline Rohan Bail Jack Viney Matthew Jones Half forwards Jeremy Howe Chris Dawes Colin Sylvia Forwards Luke Tapscott Max Gawn Shannon Byrnes Followers Jake Spencer Michael Evans Nathan Jones Interchange Dean Kent Jordie McKenzie James Strauss James Sellar Emergencies Aaron Davey Troy Davis David Rodan In Chris Dawes James Sellar Out Jack Grimes (collar bone) Jack Trengove (calf) GOLD COAST SUNS Backs Trent McKenzie Tom Murphy Sam Day Half backs David Swallow Rory Thompson Broughton Centreline Matthew Shaw Gary Ablett Harbrow Half forwards: Harley Bennell Tom Lynch Jesse Lonergan Forwards Brandon Matera Steven May Aaron Hall Followers Zac Smith Jaeger OMeara Dion Prestia Interchange Jarrod Brennan Campbell Brown Jack Hutchins Danny Stanley Emergencies Clay Cameron Luke Russell Tim Sumner In Campbell Brown Jack Hutchins Steven May Out Charlie Dixon (ankle) Karmichael Hunt (hamstring) Michael Rischitelli BLUEY'S BLOOPER Gold Coast coach Guy McKenna is fortunate he's coaching where he's so far out of the public gaze that he doesn't have to put up with eagle-eyed critics who dwell on his every word looking for inconsistencies to justify why he should be sacked. Earlier this week, he was quoted in the Herald Sun as saying it was unlikely that Campbell Brown would be rushed back into the Suns' line-up now that his six match suspension had come to an end. Bluey said his team was already carrying a few bodies struggling to get through a full game and to bring Brown straight back for the clash with Melbourne might be "a risk too far". When Brown was selected on Thursday might, there was a suggestion on the Courier Mail website that he was included to rough up the young Demons but that story has mysteriously disappeared and in it's place is one that says Brown's inclusion was "to shock underperforming pair Brandon Matera and Aaron Hall into action". Make of this what you will but it seems to me that the Suns' coach is in a state of panic and is already waving the white flag. His team had the opportunity of a lifetime to knock off the injury-riddled Dockers on their own home turf last week but they were brushed off like flies. Now, he has completely compromised his principles and resorted to the desperate act of picking a veteran coming off no match practice to throw his weight around. That's the attitude of a loser who must be dreading the thought of losing the one ace he has up his sleeve in the form of Gary Ablett Junior without who his team might as well not turn up on Sunday evening against the Demons. Ablett has been under an injury cloud for several weeks and my mail is that he's been close to being rested for a mystery ailment. It's likely that he will come up against an in form Lynden Dunn, who despite the distraction of having a mum who rings up talk back radio, has returned from injury in ripping form. After a top game on comeback as a defender in the VFL, he took Brownlow Medallist Chris Judd apart last week, keeping him down to just 13 touches and drastically limiting his effectiveness around the ground (pity about the rest of the Blues' midfield). Dunn has shown he has the mongrel to take on his second Brownlow Medal winning opponent in consecutive weeks and if he succeeds there will be plenty of people, including the bookies, with egg on their faces this week. I can't for the life of me work out why people are throwing their money away by betting against Melbourne on the strength of the omission through injury of the co-captains. Jack Grimes was always going to be an "out" and Jack Trengove contributed only six touches against Carlton. Meanwhile, the Suns have lost their top goalkicker Dixon, one of the few matchwinners in their history in Hunt and Michael Rischitelli who was dropped but has always proved a bit of a thorn in the side for the Demons. Melbourne gains Chris Dawes to add to its forward line where it was undermanned badly last week and James Sellar as a back up who performed well there in the pre season. This is a perfect opportunity for the team to reload on confidence and I'm looking for some break out performances from players like James Strauss and Luke Tapscott who are ready to step up a notch. Melbourne by 55 points.
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