Saints and Dogs

Only one thing came out of last night’s game – The Bulldogs are shot. The Saints were very much in contol at half time, then smashed out seven goals to one in the third quarter. Game over.

What did I learn?

  1. Jack Steven continues to improve and lift his game to an elite level.
  2. David Armitage can also take up some of the slack in the midfield.
  3. Lenny Hayes will have a good year.
  4. Rhys Stanley might be ok.
  5. The “Tip Rat” has kicked 497 goals in his career now. I rate him as one of the best small forwards of all time.

Watching Melbourne continue to unravel is compelling viewing. It makes the whole “bottoming out” for draft picks argument look a bit shaky. I would have thought that all the new talent in the team would be starting to return results by now. Mark Neeld just looks completely out of his depth in the media. There are only two possible reasons for this:
1. Melbourne’ s media advisor is doing a terrible job and not helping Neeld.
2. Neeld is not listening to the Melbourne media advisor!

Either way, he needs to learn “coach speak”. Saying things without saying anything. He seems to switch themes every week. When you are down the bottom, without much hope of salvation, you need to keep it light. A man needs to know his limitations – Neeld should be more aware of his.

Melbourne look completely forlorn and without any kind of motivation. I suspect that if this continues for another 6 – 8 weeks, Neeld could be looking for another job. Tough call, I know, but Neeld just doesn’t look like he has any answers, or a plan.

Blues supporters have instantly become insufferable, cocky buffoons. Three rounds into the season, and they are already buying silver polish… And how the mighty have fallen. Collingwood were incredibly lucky to win their flag in 2010 – for the Saints to almost get over the line demonstrated that they were not as almighty as their fans think. At last year’s GF, the lie of their dominance was laid bare by the Cats. Now with a couple of injuries, and a change of coach, they look vulnerable.

Travis Cloke is the most over-rated forward to play in the last 20 years. And he is not much of a team player – every time his contract comes up he seems to almost leave the club and force their hand. I am not sure he is well advised by his manager, his father. He continues to play mind-games with Collingwood regarding the prospect of moving to GWS. Not a particularly endearing trait. Compare that to Brendon Goddard – he is also probably a fairly large target for GWS and I am sure they have spoken to him. Despite the fact he might go, he is not saying anything and is completely committed to the Saints for now.  The fact that Cloke virtually walked out of the club after the 2010 premiership as a negotiating tactic says a lot about him.

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