- Aug 12, 2016
- AFL Club
- Brisbane Lions
Preview – Round 2, 2021, Geelong Cats v Brisbane Lions
WHERE AND WHEN: GMHBA Stadium, Friday, March 26, 6.20PM AEST
Why do I always get a preview after a shocking effort by our boys.
Just a small review of last night efforts:
TEAM DEFENCE: No forward pressure, No midfield pressure, leading to our defenders being out positioned and beaten convincingly against Sydney. If we can not fix this we will continue to struggle big time this year. 23 marks inside 50 to 5 almost says it all. Our Zone and transition into defence was far too slow and just didn’t work hard enough and they just picked us off far too easily. Piss poor effort and just not good enough, which leads to the second thing.
TEAM OFFENCE: The game this year has gone past our slow down the line play, yet we continued with it far too much last night. Teams that are prepared to take the game on and play on quickly from marks are going to be hard to beat this year. Our slow down the line play is far to predictable and far too slow to take advantage of the new rules. There were many times last night that we burnt players running past and then went far too slow and then resorted to the slow play allowing them to get back and defend far too easily. We deliberately tried to turn the game into a contested game down the line, but they beat us in contested posessions and then when they got the ball turned it into an uncontested game and smashed us in uncontested posessions by 54 for the game. Usually uncontested possessions means a lot of dillying around in the back half but in this game it was all forward kicks and handballs that we were unable to stop. Once again Piss poor effort.
Anyway onto Geelong: Interestingly Geelong were beaten by Adelaide yesterday with Adelaide being prepared to take the game on with run, smashing Geelong in ‘ONCE AGAIN’ uncontested posessions by 44 in an attacking manner by moving forward not back. IMO it’s a stat that now means something with the new rules. A few of the Coaches including Damien Hardwick has talked about this with uncontested marks.
SUMMARY: Friday night lights in Round 2 shows how far we have come in the previous 2 years but the Lions will have to rewrite Histroy to beat the Cats at GMHBA. The last time we beat them down there was in 2003.
Now Geelong Coach, Chris Scott was playing game 174 for Brisbane when the Lions last won in Geelong in round six, 2003. He has now gone on to have played and coached around 450 AFL games. That’s how long it has been since we have beaten them down there.
Brisbane has lost its past seven matches at GMHBA Stadium by an average of 55.1 points. The closest the Lions got was back in round 23, 2013, under caretaker coach Mark Harvey, losing his third match at the helm by a point. When Ryan Lester come up short with a snap on goal in the final seconds.
Under a Chris Fagan led Brisbane Lions, these hoodoos are there to be broken.
First game that will be played outside of “Queensland” for the Lions since our round 7 encounter against GWS last year which was played in Sydney. The week after we played Geelong, also in Sydney.
Would love to see some Charlie magic like some of these efforts from Aker against Geelong.
OFF-SEASON CHANGES (of note):
GEELONG: Outs: Taylor, Gaz and Cockatoo
Ins: Smith, Higgins and Cameron
LIONS: Outs: Martin and Witherden
Ins: Daniher and Cockatoo.
THE STATS THAT MATTER: Just a couple of key stats Imo.
Since Ash McGrath's after-the-siren "Miracle on Grass" win in 2013, Brisbane had lost eight straight matches to Geelong. The average margin was 50 points. We finally broke through for victory with a 1 point win at the Gabba in the closing rounds of the 2019 season. Taking into account both losses last year we have only beaten Geelong once in the last 11 games against them. Hard to ignore.
Along with Richmond, Geelong is the only other team that we consistently struggle to beat.
In the 2 games last year it has been contested possessions where they have smashed us all over the park with +36 in those 2 games even in shortened quarters. Their ability to hold their position on the outside of the contest is also elite and they always have someone to dish it out to on the outside as a result, where they also smashed us in uncontested possessions by +129 in those 2 games. Which is worrying considering the new rules.
We need to find a way to put more pressure on them in and around the Ruck to force mistakes and not allow them to control the play, something we have struggled to be able to do in previous meetings, especially of late.
Both teams will be desperate for a win after losing their first games.
THE KEY MATCH-UPS: The midfield battle will be the most important part of the game especially after last nights game. But it is at both ends of the ground where I am most interested. Tom Hawkins has had more success against the Lions than any other club, kicking 55 goals from 18 matches. When the teams met in 2018, Tomahawk bagged seven against Harris, who was playing his first game back from a month out with concussion caused from the mug Jerome Cameron who is now playing for Geelong after an off-season trade.
With Cameron out, It will be interesting to see how we line up but I would be keen to see Payne in a one v one battle on Hawkins, leaving Andrews to float in as third man up (which is where he is at his best) or take the resting ruck when required.
Another thought would be to bring in Adams to play the same role on Hawkins as he did in 2019. I am not sure we have seen enough of Adams yet since then to be convinced he would manage the job as well as he did in that game. I think we are best investing the time into Payne and I believe he is the future full time Full back of the club.
It may be a bit of a chance to change the backline a bit in this game with both Cameron and Ratugolea out of the side at the moment. Could be an opportunity to add some smaller and faster bodies, if Answerth was fit, he may add a bit to the run of the team and also Jimmy Madden for Birchall. We were far too slow last night and it might be time for a change. If Gardiner is fit he may come in for Lester as well.
At the other end of the ground our Forward line will be equally hard to man up on, especially with their loss of Harry Taylor during the off-season who has kept Hippy really quiet in the past. It will be interesting to see how they line up on our tall trio in Daniher, Hippy and (most likely) Fullarton. Along with a resting Oscar at times. Blicavs, Hendersen, Henry and Kolodjashnij are their options in the backline to take our talls, they are a good defensive unit so our boys will have to play well to get on top.
Once again is it an opportunity to bring in a smaller body like Tom Berry to provide some defensive pressure in the forward line to replace Fullarton.
The acquisition of Daniher could be a massive thing for our football club if we can keep him on the park, having him in there will create headaches for other teams in terms of matchups. As it will free up Hippy to play a bit further up the ground and deliver the ball fast into Daniher. From what I have seen during pre-season Hippy is noticeably looking for Daniher when he swings onto his left after taking a mark outside 50. And almost always kicking the ball his way.
If we can get the ball moving into our forward line quickly they will be hard to stop and that is why we must compete strongly and atleast match them in the middle of the ground to stand any chance In this game. And try and create some more forward and midfield pressure unlike last night.
It would be great if we can get a little bit more of this from Chris Scott during the game especially after a hanger from Daniher in the goal square.
MRP: We will have an incident looked at with Joe Daniher but with the precedent set with David Astbury getting a $2000 fine. He should be fine as it was more of a push than a hit.
MRP decision, Daniher - 2 weeks
Also Patrick Dangerfield with a high bump on Jake Kelly – this one will come under more scrutiny after the Zac Williams hit in the pre-season giving him a week. Dangerfield didn’t leave the ground but it was an unnecessary hit after the ball had left the area. And Jake Kelly will likely miss weeks.
MRP decision, Dangerfield - $1000 fine.
ODDS: CATS $ 1.61 Lions $2.32
PREDICTIONS: Hard to argue with the odds above. Especially at GMHBA.
I am hoping we can really bounce back after a horror loss and our best hope is that Geelong is also in bad form and haven’t quite picked up the speed of the new game like us. Hopefully we will take the game on a bit more rather than resorting to the down the line tactics.
LIONS BY 7 points.
Go the LIONS!!!!
Sorry if the Preview is a bit long.