Strategy What is going wrong? A discussion of tactics, strategy and execution issues and how to fix them

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Guju

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Mar 18, 2019
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We are all bloody sheeps following a rorted league.
I sometimes hate myself for being so passionate about the Hawks.

When the AFL and umpires don't want you to win, it will be almost impossible to beat the system unless the team is quality through and through, which we are not at the moment.

Call me one eyed/biased if you like, but I am certain the umpires don't like us (particularly more so since Clarkson slammed the AFL).

The only game this year where we had the rub of the green was round 1 at the MCG against the Lions. Free kick was Haw 20 to Lions 15.

Round 2. Cats 22 free kicks, Haw 15 free kicks. We played sh*t after half time.

Round 3. Tigers 23 Haw 19. Umpires slightly tried to back Tigers back in 2nd half, but the Wingard free kick in last quarter helped us.

Round 4. Haw 12 North 21. Umpires tried hard to get the win for North in the last quarter.

Round5. Giants 26 Haw 12. After Clarkson criticise umps for not paying holding the ball enough, Giants get 10 holding the ball frees while we get 1.

Round 6. Pies 19 Hawks 15. Umps never tried to get us back into the match.

Round 7. Haw 16 Dees 17. Umps never tried to get us back into the match. And we just fell away.

Round 8. Swans game. Free kick count was 10 each at half time and scores were close. By end of game, the count was 22 to 13 Swans way. We were never gonna win that.

End rant.
 

Bumps"N"Grins

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Sell the team Dolan
Our main problem for a while now (amongst others) is that we are too keen to bomb it long into the 50 where it is spoiled/intercepted about 35 meters out.
What we did very effectively in the threepeat years is get the ball to the area just outside scoring range.
This enabled us to spot up fowards.

Excuse my pathetic photoshop attempt but blue is what we do now red is what we need to get back to.
View attachment 920571
I agree with this observation, I also mentioned on the autopsy thread where Chad had a good option to do red but went blue.
 

Roger Rogerson

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We are all bloody sheeps following a rorted league.
I sometimes hate myself for being so passionate about the Hawks.

When the AFL and umpires don't want you to win, it will be almost impossible to beat the system unless the team is quality through and through, which we are not at the moment.

Call me one eyed/biased if you like, but I am certain the umpires don't like us (particularly more so since Clarkson slammed the AFL).

The only game this year where we had the rub of the green was round 1 at the MCG against the Lions. Free kick was Haw 20 to Lions 15.

Round 2. Cats 22 free kicks, Haw 15 free kicks. We played sh*t after half time.

Round 3. Tigers 23 Haw 19. Umpires slightly tried to back Tigers back in 2nd half, but the Wingard free kick in last quarter helped us.

Round 4. Haw 12 North 21. Umpires tried hard to get the win for North in the last quarter.

Round5. Giants 26 Haw 12. After Clarkson criticise umps for not paying holding the ball enough, Giants get 10 holding the ball frees while we get 1.

Round 6. Pies 19 Hawks 15. Umps never tried to get us back into the match.

Round 7. Haw 16 Dees 17. Umps never tried to get us back into the match. And we just fell away.

Round 8. Swans game. Free kick count was 10 each at half time and scores were close. By end of game, the count was 22 to 13 Swans way. We were never gonna win that.

End rant.
Most of the games where we have less frees are losses where we are 2nd to the ball. Plus we have a decent number of players who play old school rules and haven't adapted to the change in interpretations over their careers and give away stupid stupid frees. Tom Mitchell still dives on it and drags it in. So does Shiels. Burger slam tackles still. Etc etc. Part of this blame is on the coaching staff for not training our guys to play in the current day and age of umpiring.

We do cop out fair share of howlers but we also need to look in the mirror.
 

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Brishawk

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Most of the games where we have less frees are losses where we are 2nd to the ball. Plus we have a decent number of players who play old school rules and haven't adapted to the change in interpretations over their careers and give away stupid stupid frees. Tom Mitchell still dives on it and drags it in. So does Shiels. Burger slam tackles still. Etc etc. Part of this blame is on the coaching staff for not training our guys to play in the current day and age of umpiring.

We do cop out fair share of howlers but we also need to look in the mirror.
If you watch the first video I posted there are three free kicks not paid to us. Two push in the backs and a throw. It is very frustrating watching football when you see multiple frees not paid in a single passage of play and yet we seem to cop technical frees against regularly.

But yes, some of our issues are self inflicted and we need to do better.
 

Gralin

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If you watch the first video I posted there are three free kicks not paid to us. Two push in the backs and a throw. It is very frustrating watching football when you see multiple frees not paid in a single passage of play and yet we seem to cop technical frees against regularly.

But yes, some of our issues are self inflicted and we need to do better.
I'm still amazed that Punky is such an elite small forward when he goes out there every week and plays without a back.....
 

CHUBBSS

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one of the best threads in some time! I don't ever remember us having a rub of green except for the odd occasion.

We need to get back to the unsociable hawks of old, if we aren't getting the frees at least make them earn it...but I don't think our list is built for this style at the minute.

I do think Clarkson and co have been too slow to adapt to the quicker gamestyle that is at the moment because of the shortened quarters. My other concern is assistant and line coaches, we are lacking significant experience at a time when we need it most.

Great year to forget about and play the kids and rebuild tho!
 

Roger Rogerson

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If you watch the first video I posted there are three free kicks not paid to us. Two push in the backs and a throw. It is very frustrating watching football when you see multiple frees not paid in a single passage of play and yet we seem to cop technical frees against regularly.

But yes, some of our issues are self inflicted and we need to do better.
I watched Freo get reamed last night too. It seems to happen to the weaker sides. But i do agree with the broader sentiment that we seem to cop the rough end of the stick a lot.

I wonder if we separate out the free kick stats each week to see which parts of the game we are penalised most in and whether there are areas and players that are repeat offenders? You would really hope so. Also if you take out the OOB on the full frees you can see how many whistles are being blown for indiscretions against each side in play which would show more targeted decision making.
 

MrPremiership

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Are our mids blindly bombing the ball inside 50 or is it our forwards are always in the wrong space? Or does one cause the other?

Lewis is having a poor year, always seems to be in the wrong spot. The only forward who seems to know how to find space is Gunston
 

darthmann

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Are our mids blindly bombing the ball inside 50 or is it our forwards are always in the wrong space? Or does one cause the other?

Lewis is having a poor year, always seems to be in the wrong spot. The only forward who seems to know how to find space is Gunston
Both, as well as our movement off half back often making it so our mids' only option is to bomb it long I50. But it's not hard to see the difference in spacing when you compare this fwd line:

Roughead, Franklin, Rioli, Puopolo, Bruest, Gunston, Schoenmakers

to this one

Lewis, Minchington, Morris, Gunston, Burgoyne, Brooksby

Even with Wingard running through there the difference on paper is pretty damning.
 

Brishawk

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Are our mids blindly bombing the ball inside 50 or is it our forwards are always in the wrong space? Or does one cause the other?

Lewis is having a poor year, always seems to be in the wrong spot. The only forward who seems to know how to find space is Gunston
There is a good chance we orchestrate our forward structure to put Gunston in space. And of course he is a good player.
 

thejockey

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We are all bloody sheeps following a rorted league.
I sometimes hate myself for being so passionate about the Hawks.

When the AFL and umpires don't want you to win, it will be almost impossible to beat the system unless the team is quality through and through, which we are not at the moment.

Call me one eyed/biased if you like, but I am certain the umpires don't like us (particularly more so since Clarkson slammed the AFL).

The only game this year where we had the rub of the green was round 1 at the MCG against the Lions. Free kick was Haw 20 to Lions 15.

Round 2. Cats 22 free kicks, Haw 15 free kicks. We played sh*t after half time.

Round 3. Tigers 23 Haw 19. Umpires slightly tried to back Tigers back in 2nd half, but the Wingard free kick in last quarter helped us.

Round 4. Haw 12 North 21. Umpires tried hard to get the win for North in the last quarter.

Round5. Giants 26 Haw 12. After Clarkson criticise umps for not paying holding the ball enough, Giants get 10 holding the ball frees while we get 1.

Round 6. Pies 19 Hawks 15. Umps never tried to get us back into the match.

Round 7. Haw 16 Dees 17. Umps never tried to get us back into the match. And we just fell away.

Round 8. Swans game. Free kick count was 10 each at half time and scores were close. By end of game, the count was 22 to 13 Swans way. We were never gonna win that.

End rant.
Free kick counts are the least of our worries

I get it , its frustrating to watch and we certainly aren't getting the rub of the green at the minute.
But we aren't exactly being proactive either.

We are playing terribly and relying and wanting umpires to help us get into games isnt going to happen .
 

Noel Gallagher

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Free kick counts are the least of our worries

I get it , its frustrating to watch and we certainly aren't getting the rub of the green at the minute.
But we aren't exactly being proactive either.

We are playing terribly and relying and wanting umpires to help us get into games isnt going to happen .
Agree, as bad its been its a drop in the ocean compared to other issues far more pressing e.g

1. State of our list
2. Reluctance of coach to drop out of form senior players
3. Lack of cohesion in the midfield group/ poor connection with forward line/poor starting ruckman
4. Horrendous kicking disposal
5. Boring game style/lack of quick ball movement

Just to name a few things off the top of my head...
 

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H00t

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Just been doing some thinking. We seem to be unable to run out games at all, since about halfway through 2016 we seem to be a very unfit side. Unable to run out games at all.

End of 2016 we were running on empty. Just getting run of the park.

2017 we just wouldn’t or couldn’t show up after halftime.

2018 was a little better but we were still a long, long way from the top teams.

2019 was like 2018 except for some games e.g. the north game at the end of the year we had players out on their feet.

And 2020 it’s all come to ahead with shortened quarters that we can’t run out and teams just run rings around us.

It’s easy to say it’s solely a fitness issue but we have had Russel for a few of those years I believe. And we have consistently stripped weight off our players as well as bringing in Scully and Hendo. As well as JOM and Titch who both are really good runners.

That we shouldn’t be having such an issue running out games. Yes we have gone tall but I think we use up so much energy defending and trying to tackle and a lot of that goes unrewarded in part to how poorly we tackle. And Clarko demands such high defensive pressure. That we are out on our feet when we have the ball to go offensively as well as just in general towards the end of games.

Basically is our defensive game plan realistic for any team to pull off? Because we don’t seem to have the run to do it.
 

Brishawk

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Just been doing some thinking. We seem to be unable to run out games at all, since about halfway through 2016 we seem to be a very unfit side. Unable to run out games at all.

End of 2016 we were running on empty. Just getting run of the park.

2017 we just wouldn’t or couldn’t show up after halftime.

2018 was a little better but we were still a long, long way from the top teams.

2019 was like 2018 except for some games e.g. the north game at the end of the year we had players out on their feet.

And 2020 it’s all come to ahead with shortened quarters that we can’t run out and teams just run rings around us.

It’s easy to say it’s solely a fitness issue but we have had Russel for a few of those years I believe. And we have consistently stripped weight off our players as well as bringing in Scully and Hendo. As well as JOM and Titch who both are really good runners.

That we shouldn’t be having such an issue running out games. Yes we have gone tall but I think we use up so much energy defending and trying to tackle and a lot of that goes unrewarded in part to how poorly we tackle. And Clarko demands such high defensive pressure. That we are out on our feet when we have the ball to go offensively as well as just in general towards the end of games.

Basically is our defensive game plan realistic for any team to pull off? Because we don’t seem to have the run to do it.
Without wanting to go into list management and player selection, part of our current issue is that we select four inside mids and play 3 of them at any time as inside mids for all most 100% of the game. When we had Breust, we were playing Wingard in the middle so at least there was one extra in the rotation. Burgoyne gets about 5 mins a game. I think I saw Minch in for a centre bounce or two but doesn't actually spend time on the ball. Smith and Henderson have been rotated into the centre bounces but again they still spend most of their time playing as an outside player. We just don't run enough people through the demanding aspects of midfield play i.e. all the contesting and tackling. Given the way we charge at the ball carrier all game we must be expending a lot of effort and are not getting the reward for it. So I don't think the issues with running out the game are actually related to fitness across the squad.
 

H00t

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Without wanting to go into list management and player selection, part of our current issue is that we select four inside mids and play 3 of them at any time as inside mids for all most 100% of the game. When we had Breust, we were playing Wingard in the middle so at least there was one extra in the rotation. Burgoyne gets about 5 mins a game. I think I saw Minch in for a centre bounce or two but doesn't actually spend time on the ball. Smith and Henderson have been rotated into the centre bounces but again they still spend most of their time playing as an outside player. We just don't run enough people through the demanding aspects of midfield play i.e. all the contesting and tackling. Given the way we charge at the ball carrier all game we must be expending a lot of effort and are not getting the reward for it. So I don't think the issues with running out the game are actually related to fitness across the squad.
I had the same feel about it not being fitness related. Not sure we can decrease our attack on the ball carrier without major changes around how we set up defensively. As it falls apart the moment out pressure drops off.

Personally I feel the best fix would be shifting to be more attacking. Cover our defence with offence.
 

On Topic

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We are all bloody sheeps following a rorted league.
I sometimes hate myself for being so passionate about the Hawks.

When the AFL and umpires don't want you to win, it will be almost impossible to beat the system unless the team is quality through and through, which we are not at the moment.

Call me one eyed/biased if you like, but I am certain the umpires don't like us (particularly more so since Clarkson slammed the AFL).

The only game this year where we had the rub of the green was round 1 at the MCG against the Lions. Free kick was Haw 20 to Lions 15.

Round 2. Cats 22 free kicks, Haw 15 free kicks. We played sh*t after half time.

Round 3. Tigers 23 Haw 19. Umpires slightly tried to back Tigers back in 2nd half, but the Wingard free kick in last quarter helped us.

Round 4. Haw 12 North 21. Umpires tried hard to get the win for North in the last quarter.

Round5. Giants 26 Haw 12. After Clarkson criticise umps for not paying holding the ball enough, Giants get 10 holding the ball frees while we get 1.

Round 6. Pies 19 Hawks 15. Umps never tried to get us back into the match.

Round 7. Haw 16 Dees 17. Umps never tried to get us back into the match. And we just fell away.

Round 8. Swans game. Free kick count was 10 each at half time and scores were close. By end of game, the count was 22 to 13 Swans way. We were never gonna win that.

End rant.
I respectfully disagree. Yes - we have been on the wrong side of the umpire calls this year. However, I reject the notion that the umpires and/or AFL have it out against us regardless of Clarkson’s comments.

The reality is we just haven’t been that good over the last few weeks. I think we are better than the performances we have put together but it isn’t umpire intervention making us second to the ball, causing stagnant ball movement, turning the ball over and allowing us to be outnumbered in defence. That’s all on us.

I will say this though, some of the calls have resulted in momentum shifts that have impacted the game to some extent. Unfortunately the team have tended to drop their heads instead of digging their heals in. This is another area in which the side desperately need to improve on so we can wrestle momentum back in our favour.
 

VernonSpots

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Can't blame injuries. Sydney were probably more depleted than us...Buddy, Kennedy, Heeney, Naismith and they still did a number on us.

Outside of Wingard, we have no player that can drill a ball into the Fwd 50. Id rather see us getting into the 60-65m out range and trying to work it by handball and start going for some midfield goals from 50. We can't seem to score the traditional way.
 

Pessimistic

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Bring on the belting, if that makes the players go back to just playing, even within the system, which seriously can't be that effing complicated as people like to make out as these guys are not Albert Einstein, otherwise we'd have won nothing, let alone 3 in a row, and every Ex assistant since.

But play to your natural instinct all you like within the system if you have no forwards what are you to do? Recruit them I guess, hence Patton. Not have a strong contested mark do his shoulder and lose his bit of nasty because of it would be the first port of call to solve issues.

Seriously the coach can only instill self belief with the players he's got, but if the next "gen" players aren't playing where does the coach go?

This is circular, but I have faith we'll come out of the circle the better for it, if we lose no more intangible assets, but instead chase some of them back to the club.

Hey Birch, what you do next year?

What are you up to Gibbo, any chance you can do a day a week teaching the young fellas when to zone off and how to kill a contest?

Mark Williams (possibly the most underrated Hawk because we sent him to the DRUG cheats), will you teach these boys how and when to actually lead at the footy?

These boys (next gen) need proven legends (which we have plenty of) just reinforcing the absolute simple sh*t, while AC does what he does.

This sh*t is now chess, now checkers. But to show the strong "chess" moves we need HAWTHORN people who've done it in the games that matter back reinforcing these boys that they are capble.

Intangible knowledge. I wouldn't listen to Burns or Bolton, sorry, I just wouldn't. But are they capable of setting up a system within the system as that's their job, not get out there and show the young boys the simple basics, which they alreay know but need reinforcement of it from people they respect. Again it's intangible.

Get back to basics on advice re skills from the players who've done it, and let the systems then work themselves out.

It's still a simple game; Jack Ringworm leads up the middle taking all and sundry with him via knees, elbows, whatever it takes, Tom Lynch takes a uncotested mark in the very same pockets we kick to to get a throw in and has a set shot................Hmmmmm pretty efing simple when all is said and done, but of course everyone over complicates with this small brigade BULLSHIT, they won last year because of the 2 key forwards and two key backs and a sevricible ruck. Not the smalls up forward. That's diversionary.

We lost Roughie and Buddy and to a lesser degree Shoe, Spang etc......hard god damn shoes to fill.

TOB's absence showed big time against the Swines. The "almost man" competes, bringing others into the game!!!!

If we ever win a flag with him in the side he deserves a bigger applause of appreciation then Shoey and Spang got. Because he is the sacrifice.
jack and Tom stink this year, didn’t you notice?
 

daniel23

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Young man's game now proven by how many early draft picks have come in and had big impacts . Will day is almost our best player atm and you just have to look at what rowell did early and bailey Smith is doing . The old boys can't keep up any more.
 

Alite

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I like your work = Highlighting what you see and doing it in a clear way. Please do more.

My take on your footage is that poor tackles failed the Hawks. The tap ons were great. If one,of the tackle stuck and the ball came out we had players lining up to kick the ball into our 50.

We cannot have weak tacklers... in this reduced minutes environment...

Right you were ... the Hawks ran to their position. Sicily outran Bennell by 40 meters.
Who was “On” Bennell. Maybe Worpel.

Bennell’s handpass was brilliant.
 

Brishawk

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I like your work = Highlighting what you see and doing it in a clear way. Please do more.

My take on your footage is that poor tackles failed the Hawks. The tap ons were great. If one,of the tackle stuck and the ball came out we had players lining up to kick the ball into our 50.

We cannot have weak tacklers... in this reduced minutes environment...

Right you were ... the Hawks ran to their position. Sicily outran Bennell by 40 meters.
Who was “On” Bennell. Maybe Worpel.

Bennell’s handpass was brilliant.
I’m ok with Scully peaking off and being an option. If we win the ball we need someone to kick to. But that relays on team mates covering. Worpel was the one in shot but I think there was at least one other. There was enough players in the area to cover Bennell but we were so focused on the ball we weren’t aware of what was happening off the ball.
 

TylerDurden

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Can't blame injuries. Sydney were probably more depleted than us...Buddy, Kennedy, Heeney, Naismith and they still did a number on us.

Outside of Wingard, we have no player that can drill a ball into the Fwd 50. Id rather see us getting into the 60-65m out range and trying to work it by handball and start going for some midfield goals from 50. We can't seem to score the traditional way.
Irony is, Scully was the one that laced Gunston out twice against the Dees for goals. Not saying I want him in the side, but it's an indictment that Scully is almost our best user I50, Chad aside.
 

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