AFL Round 11 – Melbourne v Collingwood (Floreat Pica): Patchy Pies destroy dispirited Demons

By Mayuran Jeyarajah

I usually have no pity for opposing teams because god knows when we lose, we cop it from everyone. Yesterday was the first time in a while I had a little bit of sympathy for our opponents. The Dees appear to have no leadership, no game-plan, lack imposing players who have a hard edge, and their midfield consists of Nathan Jones + a bunch of kids. Trengove was a #2 pick who looks slow and minimal tricks. We all know about Watts and his struggles. If Neeld lasts for the season it will be a great effort.

I’m sure we all had confidence that we would win and win well, and naturally the boys come out in the first quarter and get shown up by a team with more intensity & more desperation. Putting aside Cloke’s bomb from outside 50m, it was the Dees that looked the better team. Dawes showed more hardness at the footy than we’d seen when he was in the black & white stripes, with Seedsman copping a beauty of a tackle and even Maxy getting drawn into some argy-bargy out on the wing. Watts showed flashes of his best across the half forward line, and Davey was literally running rings around us. By contrast, we couldn’t get clean footy going forward, we missed easy chances, and Pendles was caught holding the ball twice. That doesn’t happen twice a year, let alone twice in one game!

We expected a fearful spray at quarter time from Bucks, ala Chris Scott on Saturday v the Giants. But Bucks stuck to the structures and the game plan and it worked. Thankfully, the Dees couldn’t maintain that intensity from the first quarter and our experienced midfielders got well on top. Swan was racking up the footy but not being very effective, Pendles was coming into the game after a lacklustre first quarter, and Heath Shaw was like a trampoline across the half back line. 6 goals in that quarter to just 2 behinds and we went in at halftime leading by 40 points.

The second half was more of the same as the sting went out of the game completely. We had 19 scoring shots, but only 10 goals, as the guys were lining up to get on the goal-kicker’s list. I thought Ball was fantastic in the midfield, he has more desperation and intensity than the rest of our midfielders put together. Even when we’re up by 10 goals he dives after the footy with no regard for his own safety, while Swan and Pendles roll around the back for the handball. Touch wood Bally can stay fit for the remainder of the season.

The young kids were fantastic – Thomas has stayed in the limelight of Jamie Elliot for most of the year but is coming into his own now. Martin was good again, and finds a way to pop up on the scoreboard which is always a bonus. The new kid Oxley came on as sub and his first touch was a kick in traffic on the left foot which hit Swanny on the chest for a goal. He looks to be in the ilk of Pendles, a taller player with good balance who plays in the middle. On SEN after the game someone noted that for all we hear about the Demons and the number of kids they have out there, the Pies had just as many … our young players were Kennedy, Oxley, Martin, Marley Williams, Josh Thomas, Seedsman. That’s more than a quarter of the side, which bodes well for the future.

An interesting stat – yesterday we won the inside 50 count by 66 to 35. I remembered something similar to that in a much more important game, so I went back to wikipedia to confirm. In the 2010 grand final (the drawn one) we won the inside 50 count by 62 to 35. 27 more inside 50s and we could only get a draw that day, whereas here we win by over 13 goals. It says a lot about the opposition we were playing and the pressure (or lack thereof) they were able to put on.

To the votes:

3          Ball                  

Won the ball in the clinches, good delivery going forward, he really is a vital cog in our midfield.

2          Shaw               

Won a lot of the footy across half back and was rarely beaten in a contest. Whenever he doesn’t have a forward tag on him he sets up a lot of our forays forward.

1          Swan

Almost 40 possessions and was a good contributor all day. Sometimes he is too fast for his own good, or maybe he just doesn’t know how to balance well when he’s streaming inside 50m. Whatever if is, it leads to him butchering the footy a little

It’s tough to take a lot out of the game given the opposition but it’s another 4 points, a good percentage boost, and key players that have been out of form recently got their hands on the footy (Q Lynch especially).

Comments

  1. Dont waste any sympathy on that mob. Remember how their fans jeered a wounded Didak off the ground a couple of seasons ago, and how they turned on Woewodin when he came to us (despite the fact that their financial incompetence had forced him out of a club he didnt want to leave). From comments by their President, they still believe they are a great club and that the Board is doing a good job! Totally out of touch with reality.

  2. Andrew Starkie says:

    Dees, worst AFL team I’ve ever seen. Popped in for the second half and couldn’t believe how bad they were. I was yelling at them and I don’t even support them. Haven’t let a game that frustrated since, well, last North game I went to.

    No sympathy for ‘club’ – you do bad things eg tank, you create a bad culture; reap what you sow etc. But feel for players who look like shells and suffering fans.

  3. Mick Butler says:

    Hello to all loyal Magpies,
    Just remember that Melbourne were the club who loved to stress their class superiority over the working class Magpies in the 1950s.
    Their arrogance had no bounds.
    Except in the Grand Final of 1958 of course when they came crashing to earth with a thud.
    No 4 flags in a row for those arrogant demons !!!
    And our record of 4 flags in a row remained safe, and probably will forever.

    While the game was destroyed by the negative Melbourne tactics it was still a pleasure to witness another Demon defeat and to wish all of those aging Melbourne supporters a Happy Anniversary.
    It is 50 years since they won their last Flag and hopefully it will be another 50 before they see success again.

    Floreatpica 2014
    Mick in Macleod

  4. National Nine News says:

    Trengove can seriously play with fantastic leadership qualities just needs his body to stand up for mine it is the pies young ruck pairing and heap of quality youngsters and wr haven’t seen the first 2 draft choices because of injury yet the pies are well placed to have a crack at a flag in the near future ( don’t support either of these 2 sides )

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