Analysis Mid season review

Live in hope

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So much to enthuse about but I’m sure there’s weaknesses (real or imagined) to opine upon. Some thought starters -

Game plan - bringing win after win, but GWS and others have shown that controlled ball movement can cause trouble. The spectre of the 2008 GF still haunts - do we need a tried and tested ‘Plan B’ ?

Defence - so disciplined/settled yet do we have enough KPD depth? Is 2E a weak cog or a star building form ?

Mids/Ruck - second stringers very good but still too reliant on Kel Dangerwood in the big moments? Stanley too much of a risk in a GF?

Forwards - love the crazy pressure but do we rely on individual brilliance rather than systems to kick goals? Are we too reliant on Hawk?

Fitness and depth- some good players coming back from injury and some promising young talls, but a very average VFL season thus far. Have we got enough depth ?
 
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Turbocat

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Dec 10, 2003
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So much to enthuse about but I’m sure there’s weaknesses (real or imagined) to opine upon. Some thought starters -

Game plan - bringing win after win, but GWS and othershave shown that controlled ball movement can cause trouble. The spectre of the 2008 GF still haunts - do we need a tried and tested ‘Plan B’ ?

Defence - so disciplined/settled yet do we have enough KPD depth? Is 2E a weak cog or a star building form ?

Mids/Ruck - second stringers very good but still too reliant on Kel Dangerwood in the big moments? Stanley too much of a risk in a GF?

Forwards - love the crazy pressure but do we rely on individual brilliance rather than systems to kick goals? Are we too reliant on Hawk?

Fitness and depth- some good players coming back from injury and some promising young talls, but a very average VFL season thus far. Have we got enough depth ?
So far , so good.

Looking forward..

Its seems at some stage we will match up against the Pies... so the spectre of Stanley V Grundy hangs over us like the ghost of christmas future ...

Can our big names , especially the ones who have been to the circus and seen the Lions and the clowns and the dancing elephants can they rally once more and do it under the big top , on the big stage when it counts..? Can the ones who have not tasted finals success muster the steadiness to play their best when tight?

The defence is very settled but occasionally we have seen hairline cracks... Blitz really struggled against a red hot hot Ben Brown when we played North

Our forwardline has been super efficient but the 08 game does still resonate with me.. and for that matter many a GF loss does , 09 for example where the losing side could have easily won if they had been able to kick the goals when they had their chances.

but all thats in a future fictional fantasy atm ... we have won nothing yet ..but we have gradually earned some respect back.

But is it ice respect ?... the question is ...will it melt in the heat of Sept?
 
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Chinacats

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Sep 20, 2014
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Yes A+ . Looked a horror first 7 rounds. Yet navigated that expertly and didn’t have a loss against expected winnable games either. 11-1, two games clear and 3 games clear of third importantly too. Forwards efficiency is buzzing, backline is in sync and the synergy the mids bring to the team is working. Additions of Dahlhaus, Rohan, Miers and improved form of O’Connor and others means we are the team to beat! Chris Scott has made changes and they’re working. Top teams are analyzing our game plan to the nth degree now, but are they good enough to beat it? Win after the bye & Finish top 2 is the goal from here. Then win it!
 

BlakeyNoFlakey

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I'm finding it hard not be excited by this team we've got right now.

Defence: A — The team at the back is solid as they've always been with stalwarts Taylor, Stewart, Blicavs. & Kolo. Clarke has added some great pace to the HBF position and his football brain stands out, he's a long term player for us. Tuohy & O'Connor have been serviceable and sometimes inconsistent and that leaves the door open for Bews and Henderson (we have depth).

Midfield: B+ — I have marked our midfield down a little because we haven't been winning the centre that well. Even though Stanley is solid as a ruckman, we're not always winning the clearances. The contested and ground ball work of our midfield is superb though and this is what makes up for any stoppage deficiencies.

Forward: A+ — This new tactic of only having one player go for a mark as well as the overall efficiency of our forward entries has been the huge change in the team from last year. Geelong often loses the i50 stat this year because we don't need repeat entries if we kick a score on the first one. So the stat becomes meaningless. TBone is in the best form of his life, and the addition of Rohan, Dalhouse, Atkins, & Miers has been a masterstroke. But the best part of our forward line now is using Ablett as a high HF means the delivery to our Key forwards is the best I've seen in years. Put all this together and it spells MAGIC.

I like how the team can grind out wins if they have to, meaning if the opposition (or the conditions) manage to stop us moving the ball easily the players can just keep working away and making the most of the opportunities they do get. I know some people hate it when they see this and think it means the side is playing badly, but I take heart because come finals there won't be any easy games. The guys will have to grind out games against quality opposition, and the fact we can is a very positive sign to me.

Another thing I've noticed is when some teams have jumped us early and put scoreboard and physical pressure on the team making the lads look shaky, the guys have managed to pull the game back to even terms and then pass the opposition completely. This is no easy feat without runners, it shows the maturity and smarts of our leaders. Sydney & Richmond both did this recently, and we all remember those finals we lost in the first quarter where a team blew us out of the water. But the guys have shown us this year multiple times they can now turn these situations around. Sure, they haven't proven this in a final yet, but the signs are heartening just the same.

The best thing I can say about the team just watching the games is this is a united team, they love playing together, and you can really see that on the field.

Overall, Geelong has a real crack at winning a flag this year. We can't deny it. I'm not saying that means we will, or, we'll be a shoo in for it, the team still has a lot of work to get through to even get to grand final day. There's no certainties here. We'll need luck with injuries too. I'm keeping everything crossed that our boys will go all the way in 2019.
 
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Catsace

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^ ^ ^ ^

Magnificently put there Blakey, a perfect summary. Particularly about how Geelong has been able to hang tough in the sort of games we'd been dropping for a few years before, like say the Suns up there when we were not on the ball for much of the match but away from home in the last quarter the team took ownership of the situation and won by 4+ goals. And both Sydney and Richmond (and the Hawks) controlled large swathes of the opening quarters, and in all bar the Tigers game we were able to answer late and snag a small lead at 1/4 time, something the opposing side would have found deflating because their control still couldn't put a margin on the Cats.

Previously we were giving up 5,6 or 7 goals to teams in the opener, and the game was essentially over by then. This is a much more resilient side, one that has much more pace and pressure than the last few seasons, and i reckon the confidence the side has gathered is also a boon, the players have a synergy not seen since the halcyon era a decade ago. Credit also to Chris Scott too, he's obviously got the players to buy into the game plan, and also have the hunger and desire to succeed. It's quite a new side, i think someone said only six of the 2013 list is still playing now, and i reckon they will continue to do their darnedest to make this year a successful one. Of course finals is a new ball game, but we can only comment on what we all see, which looks all positive so far in '19.
 

Live in hope

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^ ^ ^ ^

Magnificently put there Blakey, a perfect summary. Particularly about how Geelong has been able to hang tough in the sort of games we'd been dropping for a few years before, like say the Suns up there when we were not on the ball for much of the match but away from home in the last quarter the team took ownership of the situation and won by 4+ goals. And both Sydney and Richmond (and the Hawks) controlled large swathes of the opening quarters, and in all bar the Tigers game we were able to answer late and snag a small lead at 1/4 time, something the opposing side would have found deflating because their control still couldn't put a margin on the Cats.

Previously we were giving up 5,6 or 7 goals to teams in the opener, and the game was essentially over by then. This is a much more resilient side, one that has much more pace and pressure than the last few seasons, and i reckon the confidence the side has gathered is also a boon, the players have a synergy not seen since the halcyon era a decade ago. Credit also to Chris Scott too, he's obviously got the players to buy into the game plan, and also have the hunger and desire to succeed. It's quite a new side, i think someone said only six of the 2013 list is still playing now, and i reckon they will continue to do their darnedest to make this year a successful one. Of course finals is a new ball game, but we can only comment on what we all see, which looks all positive so far in '19.
Fully agree and I’m not sure there’s much to add (nor have a serious melt on - very unusual feeling compared to previous years).

Couple of thoughts for second half of the year -
- if we continue winning it would be so tempting (like 2008) to adhere to the same game plan. I think this would be a mistake. I would like to see even just couple of quarters (even just last quarters if we are up 7 goals or plus) for a plan B. The style that has bothered us is a opposition ruck monstering us and controlled ball movement waiting for leading spaces into high half forward or pressured over the back. A plan B could maybe an equivalent of the Hawks 2008 mega zone (hard to type this) with only a couple deep forward and the Stanley, Sav to alternate the hard running into the open forward line to puff the monster ruck. We also have the speed with Rohan etc to run forward from the flood. I have seen glimpses of this in some games but not for sustained periods.

- a nice issue to have is settling the side once Menegola comes back and perhaps some depth players etc Scooter and maybe Simpson (I would also give either/both Buzza and Freddie a game so they can get the feel of AFL level rather than be thrown ‘cold’ as an emergency into a final). Obviously pre finals rotations (maybe rounds 18 to 20) is the time to do this. I would be telling these guys to treat the game as a Final (we want to see their absolute best - no caution).

Think the second half of the H&A will be tougher and we are bound to have a bad patch (which may not be a bad thing if not immediately prior to the finals). Regardless such a good place to be, not just for this year but (with this list and game style) also the next 2-3 years.
 
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Vdubs

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I'm finding it hard not be excited by this team we've got right now.

Defence: A — The team at the back is solid as they've always been with stalwarts Taylor, Stewart, Blicavs. & Kolo. Clarke has added some great pace to the HBF position and his football brain stands out, he's a long term player for us. Tuohy & O'Connor have been serviceable and sometimes inconsistent and that leaves the door open for Bews and Henderson (we have depth).

Midfield: B+ — I have marked our midfield down a little because we haven't been winning the centre that well. Even though Stanley is solid as a ruckman, we're not always winning the clearances. The contested and ground ball work of our midfield is superb though and this is what makes up for any stoppage deficiencies.

Forward: A+ — This new tactic of only having one player go for a mark as well as the overall efficiency of our forward entries has been the huge change in the team from last year. Geelong often loses the i50 stat this year because we don't need repeat entries if we kick a score on the first one. So the stat becomes meaningless. TBone is in the best form of his life, and the addition of Rohan, Dalhouse, Atkins, & Miers has been a masterstroke. But the best part of our forward line now is using Ablett as a high HF means the delivery to our Key forwards is the best I've seen in years. Put all this together and it spells MAGIC.

I like how the team can grind out wins if they have to, meaning if the opposition (or the conditions) manage to stop us moving the ball easily the players can just keep working away and making the most of the opportunities they do get. I know some people hate it when they see this and think it means the side is playing badly, but I take heart because come finals there won't be any easy games. The guys will have to grind out games against quality opposition, and the fact we can is a very positive sign to me.

Another thing I've noticed is when some teams have jumped us early and put scoreboard and physical pressure on the team making the lads look shaky, the guys have managed to pull the game back to even terms and then pass the opposition completely. This is no easy feat without runners, it shows the maturity and smarts of our leaders. Sydney & Richmond both did this recently, and we all remember those finals we lost in the first quarter where a team blew us out of the water. But the guys have shown us this year multiple times they can now turn these situations around. Sure, they haven't proven this in a final yet, but the signs are heartening just the same.

The best thing I can say about the team just watching the games is this is a united team, they love playing together, and you can really see that on the field.

Overall, Geelong has a real crack at winning a flag this year. We can't deny it. I'm not saying that means we will, or, we'll be a shoo in for it, the team still has a lot of work to get through to even get to grand final day. There's no certainties here. We'll need luck with injuries too. I'm keeping everything crossed that our boys will go all the way in 2019.
Typical EXCELLENT post by you. Everything makes sense and seems spot on.
 

Mad_Hatter

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Was listening to the post-game wrap on the radio this arvo (GWS vNth) and Malthouse said the Cats are "nowhere near an 11-1 team, not by any stretch".
So that's it, we are gonski.
Malthouse is a ******* and a stain on AFL.
He takes things so personal and can never let grudges go, obviously he has one against the cats and will constantly try to bring them down.
He wrote a typically terrible article about the cats the other day.
 

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fpm84

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Was listening to the post-game wrap on the radio this arvo (GWS vNth) and Malthouse said the Cats are "nowhere near an 11-1 team, not by any stretch".
So that's it, we are gonski.
That’s funny because I could have sworn we’ve won 11 games and lost one. Is he looking at the VFL ladder?
 

Landgraft

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My mid year report is that forward lines are nice, let's not go years without one again.

Although our creation out of the middle isn't league leading in terms of quantity, we seem to be extracting the ball with higher value (TK who turns loose balls into clean gathers and Danger's ability to rocket it out is a big part of this). The backline is league leading, as it has been for a few years, and the forward line actually exists now which is a huge improvement on the recent past.

I think the weakness, such as it is, will still be if we're heavily dominated in the centre without firing a return shot - there's no answer for this, and Collingwood and GWS who are our likely opponents in finals look as capable of doing it to us as anyone. I can only assume that consistently playing a defensive midfielder in the rotations is part of preparing for that. If so it means a lot might rest on whichever of Guthrie/Scoot/Parfitt/Atkins is playing deep in the season.
 

Vdubs

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Was listening to the post-game wrap on the radio this arvo (GWS vNth) and Malthouse said the Cats are "nowhere near an 11-1 team, not by any stretch".
So that's it, we are gonski.
He is right though; we are nowhere near an 11-1 team, because we are the only one. Teams are a good 2 games + % behind us.
 

Farmer2Goggin

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As usual many fantastic posts on here which makes this board even more enjoyable. Lots of knowledge and great insights as well :thumbsu:

I'm cautious about going too early but we seem to have so much going right in addition to the Win/Loss :

The group looks totally on the same page with the game plan , total buy in
Whilst we have the Wolf Pack and the Misfits we seem a very united team who enjoy each others company
Our game plan matches our assembled talent and it's devastating when it comes together
Veterans are playing magnificently and the young guys are playing out of their skins
We have depth and not a lot of injuries

There's always a catalyst for a flag and maybe the hurt from prior finals series together with a fresh approach and game plan will prove to be ours?
Did I just say that? Said I wasn't going too early :eek:
 

BlakeyNoFlakey

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Was listening to the post-game wrap on the radio this arvo (GWS vNth) and Malthouse said the Cats are "nowhere near an 11-1 team, not by any stretch".
So that's it, we are gonski.
Reminds me of 2007 where Robert Walls swore black and blue we couldn't win the flag. 2011 David King said we'd never win it. So maybe it's a good sign. I think the problem with the football media is often commentators personal prejudices/biases color their opinions.
 

Max Milburn

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Reminds me of 2007 where Robert Walls swore black and blue we couldn't win the flag. 2011 David King said we'd never win it. So maybe it's a good sign. I think the problem with the football media is often commentators personal prejudices/biases color their opinions.
It never ceases to amaze that so called intelligent football people can so easily let their bias over ride the evidence.
That's for numpties like us.
 

Geelong_Sicko

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Reminds me of 2007 where Robert Walls swore black and blue we couldn't win the flag. 2011 David King said we'd never win it. So maybe it's a good sign. I think the problem with the football media is often commentators personal prejudices/biases color their opinions.
It never ceases to amaze that so called intelligent football people can so easily let their bias over ride the evidence.
That's for numpties like us.
2007 you could kind of understand Robby Walls' (or 'Throbby Balls' as he liked to be called) pessimism about Geelong winning a flag. Even Mark 'Choco' Williams had a dig as Port Adelaide coach when he self-confidently bragged in Grand Final week about our inclusion of Steven King. I'm paraphrasing here but it was along the lines of "He's 'old' Geelong, and we all know about 'old' Geelong..."

I guess we showed him!
 

Turbocat

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He is right though; we are nowhere near an 11-1 team, because we are the only one. Teams are a good 2 games + % behind us.
Im not convinced that we are such an obviously great side either..not yet.

We had fallen a fair way.. after 2011 we had a winning aura and that gradually diminished , the fear other sides meet us with become a bit of a chance to square up to a chance to win against side that was considered sub par.

Now we are gradually build that again.. and depending on how the year pans our we really have a chance to get back some righteous respect. Were we are looked at with some degree of what we do and have done is benchmark. Beating anyone in March or April doesnt mean near as much as doing it when it counts.. the pressure is still on te likes of Rohan and others cause what they have done till now will be treated as insignificant if they do show some of tehir best form when the game is at its more important.

My "bet" if we went back and had a look at one of the best groups I have ever seen play , the Brisbane in that 01-04 group.. did they ever have a 11-1 start? From memory they were very much a Kiwi type approach to the season.. maybe not such a storm home but they were not out front leading the way.. they were good when it counted. So while we are out front .. there are questions still about how it all finishes. I can only hope we are more Secretariat and we just keep going ..and going...and going ..
 

catscratchfever

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Was listening to the post-game wrap on the radio this arvo (GWS vNth) and Malthouse said the Cats are "nowhere near an 11-1 team, not by any stretch".
So that's it, we are gonski.
**** me, I've listened to Malthouse many times this season on 774 radio and I'm convinced he's senile. Just listen to his inane babbling and non-sequiturs, as well as trying to insert himself and his "experience" into every footy discussion no matter if it's relevant or not - he makes an atrocity of the English language. I'm not surprised he got the sack from Collingwood (and it was the sack) and Carlton - can you imagine as a player having to put up with his rubbish all season long? I don't care that he's the games-coached record-holder, he got put out to pasture not a moment too soon. A complete idiot, at least these days.
 
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