The Reason for Poor Goal Kicking

Lavender Bushranger

Norm Smith Medallist
Aug 25, 2005
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I put it to you, that the reasons for the poor goal kicking ability of seemingly most players these days, is actually quite simple...

1) Firstly, they're tired. I'd dare say that even the great Tony Lockett might have shanked a few if he ever left the F50 - let alone had just sprinted the length of the ground four times in a row.

2) The positions on the ground that players get their shots from, are very different to the past. The 'hot spot' is no longer a hot spot. It's easily 'defendable' and as a result many shots at goal are from sharper angles than in the past.

3) The player taking shots these days, are not specialist goal kickers. More on-ballers get shots at goal than ever before. The forwards used to take almost all the shots at goal (or at least a very large % of them). It's spread around more, and quite simply the dudes taking shots at goal just aren't good at it. Many aren't even that good at hitting targets around the ground, so why are we shocked when they can't kick goals?

4) You used to 'born a forward'. It was pretty common for dudes to play as a forward as a kid, get noticed as a forward as a kid, get drafted as a forward as a kid and then play as a forward. These days, aren't pretty much all junior footballers on-ballers?
When you grow up as a forward, when you play kick to kick, you always are the one having the shots whilst the defenders kick it back out. It's just the way it used to be! You're always the one having shots when you muck around in the park with your mates or your Dad. A 'born forward' spent most of their life having shots at goal! It makes sense that they're good at it.
These days most guys are recruited as on-ballers, and are transformed into forwards. And as a result, they simply haven't perfected the craft of goal kicking.



Discuss...
 

Righteo

Purple Campaigner
Apr 7, 2010
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Lots of excuses but none of them reasonably explain professional footy players consistently missing goals from 30m out directly in front, which is the main source of frustration for fans re: goal kicking. Whether you're a ruck rover or a back pocket, you shouldn't need to be a "specialist" to pull off such a fundamental component of the game.
 

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Sentinel

Premium Platinum
Mar 15, 2012
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Is really even that bad these days?

I swear I heard stats compared to the older days and it didn’t seem like a great difference from memory.

I reckon there are just not as many sharpshooting forwards as there used to be so it magnifies things.
Despite the media hyperbole, goal kicking accuracy has actually continued to improve over the years (on the whole). This is of course not taking into account other factors like difficulty of shot etc.


Source: https://twitter.com/neilfws
 

Anja_Nees

Premiership Player
Aug 14, 2001
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Lots of excuses but none of them reasonably explain professional footy players consistently missing goals from 30m out directly in front, which is the main source of frustration for fans re: goal kicking. Whether you're a ruck rover or a back pocket, you shouldn't need to be a "specialist" to pull off such a fundamental component of the game.
Dogs have pulled off some absolute shockers this year, often as you suggest 20-30m our with barely any angle to speak of. Didn’t happen with such stunning regularity in years past.
 

chaddy22

Team Captain
Mar 26, 2012
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I think the boys on the couch broke it down to having **** all time doing goalkicking during the week due to recovery focus.
Too many athletes and not enough footballers.Not enough practice kicking at goals.I remember a carlton ruckman a few years back taking a mark 15 metres from goal on a angle.He did no running just stood there and took a contested mark and went near side of the behind post for no score.If you don't teach the basics of kicking then you will have players who can't kick for goal.The ovals are a lot better nowadays,no mud and drain better and when at docklands usually no breeze.I see guys pass to guys in a better position and you know they more then likely will miss it not because they are exhausted just that they do not have a relable kicking style.
 

juss

Brownlow Medallist
Feb 23, 2009
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Put simply, they have no time to practice it.

A full forward 20 years ago would have spent most of his week kicking at goal. They cant do that anymore.

Nothing to do with fatigue. Players recover in that brief moment pretty quickly and easily enough to execute a kick.
 

HairyO

Brownlow Medallist
Jul 13, 2015
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Put simply, they have no time to practice it.

A full forward 20 years ago would have spent most of his week kicking at goal. They cant do that anymore.

Nothing to do with fatigue. Players recover in that brief moment pretty quickly and easily enough to execute a kick.
Thry have plenty of time if they want. Top players put in extra work. Dunstall would spend hours after practice taking set shots. Current players can too but would rather get back to the PS4.
 

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dockshark

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May 13, 2007
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Despite the media hyperbole, goal kicking accuracy has actually continued to improve over the years (on the whole). This is of course not taking into account other factors like difficulty of shot etc.


Source: https://twitter.com/neilfws
I love this. You post evidence that the issue described in the OP is not happening. People then keep debating the reasons for the thing that’s not happening.
 

Go the Guts

Premiership Player
Apr 2, 2009
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So many players run in on a slight angle and then hook it across the body slightly. Just bad technique in some cases.
 

Leeda

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Sep 26, 2012
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Head skills.. trying hard to grab the ball in my 'right' hand, then I wander to the point of contact which means the contact with ball
and hand and then I shuffle my leg speed with my hand ball contact...

so the reason for it all to go wrong is that not enough practice is done. simple..
 

gillon

Club Legend
Sep 12, 2013
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Matthew Richardson once made a point about the height of the goal posts and was ridiculed for it. There is absolutely no doubt that taller goal posts create the illusion of a harder kick. There are other - perhaps more valid - reasons, such as fatigue and lack of skill, however I would wager that this has had some effect.
 

Leeda

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Sep 26, 2012
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Matthew Richardson once made a point about the height of the goal posts and was ridiculed for it. There is absolutely no doubt that taller goal posts create the illusion of a harder kick. There are other - perhaps more valid - reasons, such as fatigue and lack of skill, however I would wager that this has had some effect.
hmm like the shattering illusion of kicking in front of say fifty thousand sitting in the stands and that you are being watched and then going to
be absolutely well I can't say it now but well they are all watching you and then you go shit, bugger, and then you kick and you yay.. score..
and then they all flounce around and love you forever..

so I am just playing it out as if but it is never gong but it is going to be a white line fever..
yeah chuck that in the bin... dude it is overrated..
 

juss

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Thry have plenty of time if they want. Top players put in extra work. Dunstall would spend hours after practice taking set shots. Current players can too but would rather get back to the PS4.
The conditioning staff will not let them put in hours of kicking on top of their regimes. This is 2018, sports science and managed workloads is king. Its not just "practice" what you want to anymore.

Modern players arent lazy. Their running power and general fitness through sheer hard work shits on the players of yesteryear when you could rock up late and drink beers and smoke darts after the game.
 

VFL13

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May 26, 2013
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I have to ask, the graph, is it only taking in the accuracy when comparing goals to points ratio or does it keep track of out of bounds or fail to register anything shots?
Too often people pull out the stats of points to goals as a way of showing accuracy but it does not reflect the true stats. Daniher for instance usually registers 2-4 shots a game that wont even get a point and walk away with 2 goals and 2 points and someone will say he is 50/50.
 

Leeda

Talons B Sharp
Sep 26, 2012
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The conditioning staff will not let them put in hours of kicking on top of their regimes. This is 2018, sports science and managed workloads is king. Its not just "practice" what you want to anymore.

Modern players arent lazy. Their running power and general fitness through sheer hard work shits on the players of yesteryear when you could rock up late and drink beers and smoke darts after the game.
if that is the case then why aren't there more players kicking a hundred goals a year. they should be absolutely topping the scales with goals rather than
just spreading them around ..
 

Damon_3388

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Jun 23, 2008
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paul haselby could take a mark and could kick.not a athlete.
That's great. He also got drafted 2nd overall, played over 200 games, won two club B&Fs and an All-All-Australian, and four Ross Glendinning Medals from derby games. He had a good distinguished career, so you can't really say he was slighted or missed out in favour of a non-football athlete.
 

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