Game Day Round 17, 2020: St.Kilda v West Coast

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austinnn

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Here's a bit of footy from 9 years to the day: St Kilda's last AFL final!

9 years of Lyon defecting to Freo, Watters, Richo, Pelchen, Trout, Archie Fraser, a burnt dwarf, Seaford, matches in New Zealand, a wooden spoon, generational bookends McCartin and Goddard, the next Buddy Spencer White, Hickey vs Longer, Markworth, Freeman, Carlisle on Snapchat, expansion teams and compromised drafts, leadership voids and dumb footy, having a crack, age gaps, list mismanagement, the Road To 2018, melts, false dawns, comebacks and headscratchers, and when it comes down to it 191 Saints matches for 12+5+4+6+12+11+4+9+9=72 wins, 2 draws and 117 losses.

So, "now what?" indeed.
......................................................................

Now what?

By Ashley Browne11:31 PM Sat 10 Sep, 2011

NOW THAT finals are off the agenda for St Kilda in 2011, an item near the top of the off-season to-do list for the club is regeneration.

And in the no-nonsense fashion so typical of coach Ross Lyon, it didn't take long for the Saints to get started, with Michael Gardiner, Steven Baker, Andrew McQualter and Robert Eddy announcing their retirements from the club and presumably, from the game, within seconds of the players trudging wearily from Etihad Stadium after the 25-point loss to the Sydney Swans on Saturday night.

Although, according to Twitter, Eddy and Lyon have different interpretations of what "retirement" actually means, with Eddy keen to point out he was delisted rather than calling it a day.

There may be more departures to come in the next few days, but Lyon refused to be drawn further, saying such speculation would be unfair.

But there is much for the Saints to ponder over the next six weeks as they contemplate their earliest end to a season since 2007, Lyon's first in charge of the club.

Indeed, it will be a particularly empty remainder of September for Lyon. Counting his time as an assistant coach with the Sydney Swans, Lyon has been involved in four of the past six Grand Finals. Five of the last seven if you include the last year's draw.

The elephant in the room is the coach himself. He has 12 months to go on his existing contract and the Melbourne Football Club is said to be lurking.

Doubtless, Garry Lyon, the man charged with finding the next coach of the Demons, rode the Sydney Swans home hard on Saturday night, because with the Saints out of the finals picture, he can earnestly start trying to find out whether Lyon can be pried from his deal at Linen House Centre for something more substantial with the Demons.

While all that takes place, the Saints need to work on their kicking. Lyon bemoaned some deplorable foot skills early in the last term against the Swans, as his side, which had clawed back a 32-point deficit to less than 10 points, butchered the ball repeatedly when pushing forward early in the last quarter.

He needs to get his skipper fit and firing again. Nick Riewoldt was barely a factor against the Swans, after appearing to jar his troublesome knee once again in the first quarter after being tunneled under the ball in a marking contest with Ted Richards.

Lyon wouldn't share the details of the five-minute address he gave his players on the ground immediately after the final siren.

"Some things are meant to be private," he said afterwards.

Most likely he shared his dissatisfaction with a season that started awfully for reasons largely beyond his control, got going for a bit, then ended on a sour note.

"I don't like losing. I don't like losing finals. I don't like losing at home, so there's no satisfaction," he said.

It was the complete opposite down the corridor. The Swans have won four straight and as several in their rooms noted, two wins over the Saints and another at Geelong (the fourth win was at home to the Brisbane Lions) represents genuine quality scalps.

The Swans might be playing their best footy for the season at precisely the right time.

Their injury concerns for the week are Daniel Hannebery, who popped a shoulder, although as coach John Longmire noted, it was his good shoulder and he played through a similar injury last year.

The exciting Gary Rohan was nursing a knee injury and with just a six-day turnaround, that will need to be monitored as well. But those injuries pale into nothing when compared to the almost-certain absence of Hawthorn star Lance Franklin for Friday night's knock-out semi-final at the MCG.

Franklin monstered the Swans with an imperious 6.6 in Hawthorn's 46-point win at the SCG in round nine.

Friday night's clash is now an even-money bet, but what the Swans need to come to terms with is the expansive MCG, where they have lost their past six matches, including a 43-point loss to Richmond at their most recent visit, in round 21.

But they'll look at how the Hawks were humbled by the Geelong power forwards on Friday night and know that if they win enough of the clearances and pump the ball in long and high to the likes of Sam Reid and Jesse White, they could kick a winning score.

And with Adam Goodes on the field and Franklin in the stands, they're the team with the genuine gamebreaker.

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily of the AFL or the clubs
 
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Saintbloke

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We need to stay in the final eight as we've done such a good job this season and don't want to waste it, so I'm looking forward to see how we handle a depleted WCE. A bit worried that we couldn't beat Melbourne, and had to struggle to win against a depleted Hawks. Our speedy game has gone missing a bit as the opposition is sitting on Jones, so I guess that might be why Hind gets back in- but he needs to be used where he can run and break lines.
 

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Ricmel

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As good a chance as we will get to beat Eagles with their outs. I think it will come down to 2 critical battles. Can Ryder nullify or even beat NicNat in the ruck? Can we find a way around McGovern and Barrass?

I think our HB/Mids/HF lines are stronger than theirs tonight so think our forwards will see plenty of the ball. Out nightmare scenario is that McGovern and Barrass pick off our forward entries all night long.

Winnable but we have to play smart footy, particularly with our forward entries.
 

plugger66

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It’s a must win for us but also wce. Hopefully our midfield proves stronger than theirs. I’m a believer that the midfield makes or breaks forward and backlines. Our midfield is depleted. Theirs is completely gone bar kelly and gaff. They are that short they have named gaff as a true on baller. That would be like us naming hill there. Obviously where you are named doesn’t mean you play there but he certainly may. It’s ours to lose. Not only does a win get us a spot in the 8 it’s gets us a final where we want it not that’s the advantage it once was.
 

JG22

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It’s a must win for us but also wce. Hopefully our midfield proves stronger than theirs. I’m a believer that the midfield makes or breaks forward and backlines. Our midfield is depleted. Theirs is completely gone bar kelly and gaff. They are that short they have named gaff as a true on baller. That would be like us naming hill there. Obviously where you are named doesn’t mean you play there but he certainly may. It’s ours to lose. Not only does a win get us a spot in the 8 it’s gets us a final where we want it not that’s the advantage it once was.
Couldn't agree more with the Gaff & Hill similarities at playing inside mid.

If Gaff does, you just have to crunch the kid.
 

SaintersUnite

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Tonight could be a defining moment in the history of the St Kilda Football Club, and a defining moment for the current group of players.

Let’s all forget about the negatives leading into this game, and just focus on supporting the boys. The team is nothing without the fans. Let’s go Saints!


On iPhone using BigFooty.com mobile app
 

hayes

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Jeez I’m nervous for these last two games. Hopefully we’ve come up with something to do for that slow play out of the backline. That just kills us.

Paton to Ryan
Ross to Kelly?

No long bombs, ball has to come to ground. If we can get some speed into the game we’re every chance.
 

JG22

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Jeez I’m nervous for these last two games. Hopefully we’ve come up with something to do for that slow play out of the backline. That just kills us.

Paton to Ryan
Ross to Kelly?

No long bombs, ball has to come to ground. If we can get some speed into the game we’re every chance.
Yep, a couple of the match ups I was thinking.

Ben can't go with Ryan in the air, but no one really can.
 

plugger66

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Jeez I’m nervous for these last two games. Hopefully we’ve come up with something to do for that slow play out of the backline. That just kills us.

Paton to Ryan
Ross to Kelly?

No long bombs, ball has to come to ground. If we can get some speed into the game we’re every chance.
Our fast game was all about long bombs. I think people are far to worried about their forwards and backs. If as expected it’s wet we have a huge advantage up forward and back.
 

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gringo2011

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It’s a must win for us but also wce. Hopefully our midfield proves stronger than theirs. I’m a believer that the midfield makes or breaks forward and backlines. Our midfield is depleted. Theirs is completely gone bar kelly and gaff. They are that short they have named gaff as a true on baller. That would be like us naming hill there. Obviously where you are named doesn’t mean you play there but he certainly may. It’s ours to lose. Not only does a win get us a spot in the 8 it’s gets us a final where we want it not that’s the advantage it once was.

They have played Gaff on ball before and he's not as bad as you'd think.
 

gringo2011

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Yes but he is a much better winger. It wouldn’t be by choice. Shows how short they are.

They don't have their regular midfield for sure. Gaff playing on ball should go okay though. They will cobble together something, I just hope it's not like when Lyon rested the midfield in Tasmania and we still won.

I think WC named Rotham which is a strange choice, an extra KPB on a wet night when they see to have a lot of tall players in.
 

plugger66

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They don't have their regular midfield for sure. Gaff playing on ball should go okay though. They will cobble together something, I just hope it's not like when Lyon rested the midfield in Tasmania and we still won.

I think WC named Rotham which is a strange choice, an extra KPB on a wet night when they see to have a lot of tall players in.
It’s far different from that. We had dominated the afl. They are more out of form than we are.
 
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