St Kilda: Out of their comfort zone

I think us Saints fans are now decidedly out of our comfort zone.  For so long we carried the mantle as “everyone’s second favourite team” or “the loveable loser” – but in recent years, despite still not having won anything, it seems we are now public enemy one – very unfamiliar territory for a Saint (probably water off a duck’s back for a Pie). I guess it’s a combination of the stodgy game plan, the off-field brouhaha (don’t get me started on the girl in question or the Herald Sun!), the monotone process-driven coach, some less than popular characters (Milne, and seemingly Riewoldt), and now people just wanting us to disappear – as we’ve had our chance, didn’t take it, and are craving something new. I liken it a little bit to the South African cricket team – most of us would have absolutely rejoiced in their choking against NZ the other night – the Saints of this era are becoming the Proteas cricket equivalent!

In reference to Friday night specifically, Paul Roos (a disciple of the Leigh Matthews school of common-sense thinking) mentioned last night that “bad games happen every now and again” – and while St Kilda are a common denominator when they occur – there have been “plenty of good games in between”. I guess all the outcry would be minimal if Scarlett missed the toe-poke in 2009, and Milne’s ball jerked vertical instead of right last year. And it’s only Round 1 after all. After the opener in 2009, a similar mundane affair against Sydney, St Kilda went on to be 20-0.  Let’s see what the next few weeks will bring – plenty of goals hopefully!


  1. John Butler says


    You’re right about the difference in outlook. Saints supporters now have expectations!

    Roos is a good reference point. The main difference between his Swans and Lyon’s Saints is that flag. Success serves as justification in many eyes.

    But will the Saints find a flag without a few extra strings to the bow?

  2. DD – don’t worry I still hate Collingwood more.

  3. Phil Dimitriadis says

    That is whole point Dips. No one really hates the Saints as a club and as a football symbol. Maybe that’s part of the problem. I also wonder if enough of their fans hurt after a loss?

  4. Mulcaster says

    The opposite of love is not hatred but rather indifference.

  5. Dave Nadel says

    David, St Kilda have never been my second favourite team. I have never seen them as loveable losers. Fitzroy, Western Bulldogs and Fremantle have all at times been considered that way but to most Pie fans St Kilda are the club that made Jimmy O’Dea a life member after he had destroyed John Greenings career with a cowards blow behind the play.

  6. I was at the drawn grand final and became a Saints fan for the day. That bouncing Milne ball was right in front of me. I stood and then the world slowed down and i had time to think: ‘The Saints are gonna win this.’ And then. “But that little prick will be remembered for ever as the player who kicked the winning goal in a grand final. No, we can’t have that.” Then ball bounced away. Sorry about that.
    PS For most of my footy following life I’ve seen Collingwood as lovable losers.

  7. David Downer says

    Thanks for the responses boys – a bit of a hasty slapshod half-email piece I’ve got here obviously (but thankfully about 800 words under par the usual).

    The Saints definitely need a freshening up to stay in the hunt. Most of us realised this at around 3QT of GFII last year. An injection of youth is an absolute must to “re-zing” the place, not to mention the supporters. The Round 1 side was disappointingly more of the “same ol’ same ol'” – reasons were given that a few of the kids knocking on the door were injured or hopelessly out of form (in R.Stanley’s case). Expect things to evolve on this front in the next few weeks.

    Phil D – All we know is hurt! But maybe not enough, given we don’t know the joy of tasting from the Cup in the first place!

    Dave N – I know of the Greening-O’Dea incident and can only imagine the thuggery of such an act, but it was well before my time – and that of the current player group, coaches and administration.

    Les – The rabid bunch of miscreants who stand behind the Collingwood cheer squad every week will ensure that I never tag Collingwood as “lovable losers”. But note that our almanac black and white friends are very far removed from being tarnished with that sort of brush!


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