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  1. READY FOR THE KILL by Whispering Jack A couple of weeks ago, we breathed a sigh of relief when two of Hawthorn's most important players lost the plot and earned themselves a few weeks holiday courtesy of the AFL system which punishes such indiscretions as whacking unsuspecting opponents in the head and the like. It didn't take long for the suspensions of Luke Hodge and Jordan Lewis to have a negative impact on the Hawks. Their surprise defeat at the hands of the GWS Giants put them three games behind competition leader Fremantle and, even at this early stage of proceedings that makes the pos
  2. PATTERNS by Whispering Jack Halfway through the second quarter at StarTrack Oval last Saturday, the Demons were seemingly cruising through their game against the Giants. Leading by five goals and having kept their opponents down to a solitary goal, they loosened their hold on the game after Jeff Garlett had goaled at the ten minute mark. They allowed GWS too much latitude and it was only their poor finishing that kept them at bay. Late in the quarter and against the run of play, Ben Newton goaled to give his team a game high lead of 33 points in the shadows of half time. The game's defining mo
  3. STARTRACK: THE FINAL FRONTIER by Whispering Jack This week, Melbourne goes on the road to the AFL's final frontier, the national capital Canberra, where it takes on another of the AFL's new franchise clubs in the Greater Western Sydney Giants. Both clubs won their opening rounds but they are considered to be a long way behind the AFL's elite teams and in a different stratosphere completely to the reigning premier, Hawthorn. A win at StarTrak Oval, Manuka will mean a lot to the victor - it will provide confidence, credibility and an excellent starting point for the long year ahead. To the van
  4. I was reflecting recently about the impending arrival of the new AFL season and I came to the conclusion that it is fitting that the capital city of the Northern Territory, whose government is a relationship partner of the Melbourne Football Club, was named after English naturalist Charlie Darwin. Darwin, whose theory of evolution was expounded in On the Origin of Species described the process of natural selection as being a matter of the "survival of the fittest" and, as fate would have it, this is becoming a catch phrase that best sums up the early part of the AFL season still very much in
  5. I hate Hawthorn more than any club in the competition and by a long way. I dislike there supporters, in fact the only two times I have come close to belting someone at the footy was last year against Hawthorn when some low life got into the trident reserved area with his mates and got right on our faces and my brother who is a Hawthorn supporter after Jimmy ran across the mark. The underlying issue I have with Hawthorn is that we the MFC are their Bi..hes, their whipping boys, they own us and have done for some time. We talk about '87, the '88 through the early 90's and especially over the p
  6. 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 doub
  7. Just over twelve months ago on the eve of the Round 2 West Coast Eagles game in Perth, I wrote that the way in which Melbourne approached that particular fixture would define the playing group, given its poor start to the season under then new coach Mark Neeld. The result was an even more insipid performance by the team than the week before and it was followed by more of the same for the majority of the season. A full year later, the team in a different form with a number of new faces repeated the dose in Round 2 against Essendon. This time, it was another defeat in excess of 100 points but f
  8. The long hot summer of 2012-3 will not be forgotten by many of us associated with the Melbourne Football Club but, even as I begin to write, with the temperatures still hovering in the thirties, the questions about the club's future still linger. We are on the brink of a seventh season since the Demons tasted the finals or even won an opening match. The big hitters of the competition seem way ahead of where Melbourne is currently placed in terms of its perceived playing strength and nobody seriously thinks it can challenge for September action this year and perhaps even the next. Supporters c
  9. TEN YEARS AFTER by William from West Perth The hardy band of long-suffering Demon followers of the most prosperous state in the Commonwealth welcome back their team on Saturday night in the hope that it can turn on something better than it has on previous visits dating back more than a decade. Only once in that time has Melbourne tasted victory west of the Nullarbor and that was on a rainy day at Subiaco in Round 11, 2004. It was Brock McLean's breakout game and Peter Vardy lit up the ground with his # 19 jumper. But I missed that game and the last time I saw a Melbourne win in these parts was
  10. TEN YEARS AFTER by William from West Perth The hardy band of long-suffering Demon followers of the most prosperous state in the Commonwealth welcome back their team on Saturday night in the hope that it can turn on something better than it has on previous visits dating back more than a decade. Only once in that time has Melbourne tasted victory west of the Nullarbor and that was on a rainy day at Subiaco in Round 11, 2004. It was Brock McLean's breakout game and Peter Vardy lit up the ground with his # 19 jumper. But I missed that game and the last time I saw a Melbourne win in these parts was
  11. THE GREEN MILE by Whispering Jack The last home game of the season is to be played at the ungodly hour of 4.40pm on a Sunday night in late winter and, because it's against Adelaide and the forecast is for a shower or two, one wonders whether a crowd will turn up to farewell Brad Green who will play his 254th game proudly wearing the number 18 guernsey for the last time in a distinguished career with the Melbourne Football Club. It would be a shame if the Demon faithful fail to turn up to celebrate the occasion. This season has been a long, hard and eventful one but for all the wrong reasons. W
  12. THE GREEN MILE by Whispering Jack The last home game of the season is to be played at the ungodly hour of 4.40pm on a Sunday night in late winter and, because it's against Adelaide and the forecast is for a shower or two, one wonders whether a crowd will turn up to farewell Brad Green who will play his 254th game proudly wearing the number 18 guernsey for the last time in a distinguished career with the Melbourne Football Club. It would be a shame if the Demon faithful fail to turn up to celebrate the occasion. This season has been a long, hard and eventful one but for all the wrong reasons. W
  13. A BIG LAUGH by The Oracle This season has produced very little for Melbourne supporters to smile about as the club has been hit by disasters off the field and pushed from pillar to post on it. The calamities that have affected the Demons have certainly been well documented and little of it has been funny. This is why I was somewhat puzzled to see the three talking heads on On The Couch giggling away with amusement after showing a film clip of Melbourne Chairman that selectively focussed on part of the comments he made to members at a lunch before last week's game against the Gold Coast Suns c
  14. A BIG LAUGH by The Oracle This season has produced very little for Melbourne supporters to smile about as the club has been hit by disasters off the field and pushed from pillar to post on it. The calamities that have affected the Demons have certainly been well documented and little of it has been funny. This is why I was somewhat puzzled to see the three talking heads on On The Couch giggling away with amusement after showing a film clip of Melbourne Chairman that selectively focussed on part of the comments he made to members at a lunch before last week's game against the Gold Coast Suns c
  15. IRRELEVANT by Clyde The (former) Clifton Hill Cabbie I don't know if anybody out there remembers me. In my time as one of this great city's leading cab drivers I was well known by all and sundry who used my services to convey them around town for my opinions on politics, religion, sport and a variety of other subjects. I always believed I had a deep knowledge and understanding about our nation's number one sport until one day, this young bloke turned his attention away from his iphone, sat up in the back seat of my taxi cab, angrily snubbed his nose up against the perspex window that divided u
  16. IRRELEVANT by Clyde The (former) Clifton Hill Cabbie I don't know if anybody out there remembers me. In my time as one of this great city's leading cab drivers I was well known by all and sundry who used my services to convey them around town for my opinions on politics, religion, sport and a variety of other subjects. I always believed I had a deep knowledge and understanding about our nation's number one sport until one day, this young bloke turned his attention away from his iphone, sat up in the back seat of my taxi cab, angrily snubbed his nose up against the perspex window that divided u
  17. THE WOOD by The Oracle There's a term in sport that applies when one participant always seems to come out on top of another. It's called "having the wood on your opponent" and I can add without fear or trepidation that the saying definitely applies to North Melbourne's recent record against Melbourne. On Saturday afternoon the Kangaroos will be aiming to make it ten wins in a row against the Demons. They will be assisted by the fact that the game is being held on their home territory at Etihad Stadium where they hold a winning record of 5-0 at a place where Melbourne has lost its last thirteen
  18. THE WOOD by The Oracle There's a term in sport that applies when one participant always seems to come out on top of another. It's called "having the wood on your opponent" and I can add without fear or trepidation that the saying definitely applies to North Melbourne's recent record against Melbourne. On Saturday afternoon the Kangaroos will be aiming to make it ten wins in a row against the Demons. They will be assisted by the fact that the game is being held on their home territory at Etihad Stadium where they hold a winning record of 5-0 at a place where Melbourne has lost its last thirteen
  19. THE CURSE by Whispering Jack Exactly twelve months have passed since Melbourne travelled to the Top End where it took on Port Adelaide and delivered Dean Bailey his last win as an AFL senior coach. The team laboured hard in Darwin's heat and humidity and was always going to finish in front of the Power whose season had been horrible to that point and was only going to get worse. For Melbourne, the four premiership points for the win gave it 9th position on the ladder and a definite chance to participate in the AFL finals series for the first time since 2006. The Demons were facing a tough mont
  20. THE CURSE by Whispering Jack Exactly twelve months have passed since Melbourne travelled to the Top End where it took on Port Adelaide and delivered Dean Bailey his last win as an AFL senior coach. The team laboured hard in Darwin's heat and humidity and was always going to finish in front of the Power whose season had been horrible to that point and was only going to get worse. For Melbourne, the four premiership points for the win gave it 9th position on the ladder and a definite chance to participate in the AFL finals series for the first time since 2006. The Demons were facing a tough
  21. FIFTY SHADES OF PURPLE by Sam the Stats Man Those of us who are experts in the field of statistics are only too aware of the fact that there are numerous shades of purple but for this Saturday's Melbourne home game against Fremantle at Etihad Stadium, I'm not expecting to see many different shades of that colour in the crowd. Nor will there be very many versions of the home club's colours either! The Demons rarely attract large numbers of their supporters for "home" games at Etihad Stadium. In particular, when the fixture is against the highly favoured Dockers and the team is the 16th-placed
  22. FIFTY SHADES OF PURPLE by Sam the Stats Man Those of us who are experts in the field of statistics are only too aware of the fact that there are numerous shades of purple but for this Saturday's Melbourne home game against Fremantle at Etihad Stadium, I'm not expecting to see many different shades of that colour in the crowd. Nor will there be very many versions of the home club's colours either! The Demons rarely attract large numbers of their supporters for "home" games at Etihad Stadium. In particular, when the fixture is against the highly favoured Dockers and the team is the 16th-placed
  23. RUDE AWAKENING by the Demonland Crew and hosted by JVM The Round 14 fixture between Melbourne and Richmond has assumed a greater measure of significance in the scheme of things as a result of the week's happenings at Tigerland. Our correspondents have looked at the game from different perspectives, starting with Demon Head who looks at the recent history of games between these clubs:- Melbourne and Richmond have an interesting recent history. Who could ever forget the "Jordan McMahon" game which was decided when that player goaled after the siren to secure victory for the Tigers and a priorit
  24. RUDE AWAKENING by the Demonland Crew and hosted by JVM The Round 14 fixture between Melbourne and Richmond has assumed a greater measure of significance in the scheme of things as a result of the week's happenings at Tigerland. Our correspondents have looked at the game from different perspectives, starting with Demon Head who looks at the recent history of games between these clubs:- Melbourne and Richmond have an interesting recent history. Who could ever forget the "Jordan McMahon" game which was decided when that player goaled after the siren to secure victory for the Tigers and a priorit
  25. THE HEAT IS OFF by the Oracle A little over three months ago, it all started with the Brisbane Lions at the end of a long, hot summer. It was a time full of hope and a measure of confidence. There was so much about the club that was new and the pre season, while not inspirational, had produced some flashes that gave rise to some inspiration. To be sure, a handful of key personnel were missing the opening game of the season but this was Brisbane and it was our home soil. The Demons had their moments in the first half before they capitulated in the second. To the surprise of many, it was the vi
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