True Believers, hi to all.
Thanks for your comments. Absolutely concur. Does anyone claim to have seen that coming? Not me. See the experts – http://www.theage.com.au/afl/expert-tipsters. Not a Lions’ tip to be found.
I didn’t see the game (being a good neighbour and watching the Union Test (multi-skilling) with neighbours). Thanks for your comments, updates and incisive reviews during the game. I have taken your advice and avoided watching the replay; the clips from the news are bad enough.
The game? OK, two 10 goal plus losses in a row. This is not normal, or understandable, or expected. What is a bit weird is “the wheels falling off” the team’s performance after a pretty positive start to the season. If you want, go to the Match Review at http://www.afl.com.au/match-centre/2014/21/coll-v-bl. Pretty much the statistics on the Match Centre opening page say it all – Disposals, Frees, Clearances (interesting Hit Out win), Inside 50s, Contested Possessions. Also interesting Tackles statistic – even. And a crowd just under 33 000 at the G? That is pathetic.
Bucks’ comments? His acknowledgement of the Lions’ performance is both accurate and appropriate. His comments at http://www.collingwoodfc.com.au/news/2014-08-16/season-over-for-pies-duo are worth listening to. The text summary misses some important bits. After his “the mood’s not great (in the rooms)” comment, he made an important point regarding everyone “investing in the team performance (including the supporters)” (timing: 2.47). Worth listening to. What it does, for me, is highlights Buck’s understanding of ‘the game’ in its totality and the contribution by the Club to the team’s performances; no challenge from me to his appointment (particularly after the early season performances). His “perfect storm” analogy is pretty good. I’m not sure I understand the highlighting of injured players “out for the season” when there are probably only two more games to go.
What about the rest of the Round (and the Season)? Richmond – 7 wins in a row (first time they’ve achieved that in nearly 20 years) and thinking seriously about ‘Finals Footy’? St Kilda next week, then Sydney. And what about my pick of Adelaide as a serious Finals threat (North next week, then St Kilda) , and Essendon (GC next week, though then (a fairly impressive) Carlton). I’m disappointed for the Eagles (Melbourne next, then GC (up North) – probably two big wins) – they were very impressive against us last week and might sneak in. Who knows who will make up the final Eight? Could we still sneak in? I suspect mathematically, yes, but it would require pretty massive wins by us, including against Hawthorn. But my bet of a crate of beer is looking fairly safe that the GC (Essendon next week, then the Eagles) will NOT make the Eight this year. Guesses – http://www.afl.com.au/news/2014-08-17/finals-crystal-ball-week-one-predictions.
And the future for us? http://www.theage.com.au/afl/afl-news/collingwoods-future-still-bright-confident-coach-nathan-buckley-insists-20140817-105595.html and http://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/afl/collingwood-magpies-brodie-grundy-tim-broomhead-and-ben-kennedy-excited-about-future/story-fni5f6hd-1227025773439.
Oh yes, Karnezis might (finally) get a run. And well done, Armstrong – two games in the one day, well done. And well done to the Two’s for a great performance – http://www.collingwoodfc.com.au/news/2014-08-16/vfl-the-best-win-of-the-season. I think our challenge over the next couple of weeks are going to be ‘rebuilding’ our Defence (Reid no longer an option), which was widely acknowledged as pretty awful, and our Clearances – solutions?
This is when it all gets a bit challenging being a Pies supporter (and I’m wearing my Pies 2010 Premiership tie while writing this), but we’ve been there before. As I said a couple of weeks ago, we expect our players to “play to the Final Siren”. We supporters should do likewise. But it’s OK to start thinking about 2015 (a bit).