Player Watch #41: Cian McBride - Welcome to Essendon!

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Foxx

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Jul 18, 2011
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Will probably be a backman. There probably was, but I don’t recall there ever being a really good Irish forward.
 

BrunoV

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May 5, 2009
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Always good to get a tall athlete onto the list.

Lot of water to pass under the bridge but the combination of height and athleticism probably makes him as likely to make it as someone like BZT.

A lot of good key defenders start out as little more than tall athletes.
 

TheGrizz

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Will probably be a backman. There probably was, but I don’t recall there ever being a really good Irish forward.
Always good to get a tall athlete onto the list.

Lot of water to pass under the bridge but the combination of height and athleticism probably makes him as likely to make it as someone like BZT.

A lot of good key defenders start out as little more than tall athletes.
It seems that Irishman generally make good backmen rather than forwards, with the odd exception like Jim Stynes (ruck) and Hanley (although he started as a defender).

It probably has to do with the physical 360 degree nature of football. Gaelic football for example is also 360 but it is no contact, so it can take a bit for irishman to have the awareness of when they are about to get tackled or need to dispose of the ball under physical pressure.

As a defender the majority of the field and general play is normally in front of you and makes it easier to read, or you just follow your man anyway and can afford to be reactive. Both of which obviously makes it easier to adjust as a newcomer. Playing with your back to goals and knowing where the sticks are, and leading patterns etc is a lot of new info to learn and apply.

Also, the fact that the Irish are generally exceptional kicks helps as well. In today's game you need speed and ball skills out of your defensive half, both of which tend to be the hallmark of Irish recruits.

All this to say, I think McBride projects as a defender, although who the heck knows at this point in this development.
 

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BrunoV

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Or the Italian 18 (AFL - Footscray Bulldogs - 90’s)

Wasnt it the "Wog Squad"?

Ah, the 90s. Back when words were just words, intent mattered and virtue signalling wasn't a thing.

Would be the era of football everyone would long for, too, if they were being objective about it and not just pining for some fantasy about what footy was like.
 
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Lore

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Dec 14, 2015
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Article and video finally on the club website, appears to finally be in the country :) Very raw though, has to do a lot of basic skills work as you'd expect (there's footage of him training in the video).


“I saw (McKenna) plenty of times before in the red and black. If one Irish man can do it, we all want to try and give it a go too.

“I heard about (Australian football) a couple of years ago at home when a couple of lads from home were moving out, and I looked into it and said it might be something I’d like to give a go,”

“It was always going to be tough moving away from home. It was a big decision, but it was the right decision in the end, I’m happy here at the minute,”

“It’s great to have a couple of Irish (players) at the club, so you don’t feel too far from home – they’re always there to just give you that extra bit.

“And it’s not that the other lads don’t, everybody is getting behind you, but it’s great to have the boys from home with you.”

“We got out and had a look about over the weekend and it’s a great city.”

“The drop for the kick and the hands, you need quick hands and hands out front all the time, so I need to get working on them,”

“(I want to) just get in and get going. Getting my hands right and feet right, getting my shot selections right and just focus on all of my skills, because they all need a bit of a touch-up.”

“My marking and hopefully further down the line a bit of goalkicking (can be strengths).

“We’ll have to show that (athleticism), it’s the trait of the Irish so we’ve got to keep that going.”
 

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