Preview Will softness derail Essendons 2018 premiership campaign?

Discussion in 'AFL - The Australian Football League' started by Snake_Baker, Nov 21, 2017.

Put it out there
  1. Snake_Baker

    Snake_Baker Brownlow Medallist

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    I know there's a few pundits that see them as genuine contenders in 2018, but will they be found out for hard inside midfielders? Yes, according to "The List manager"

    Bombers might get bashed up says Plough

    Former coach Terry Wallace says the capacity of Essendon to refine its all-out attack and match opponent’s midfield muscle will decide the club’s fate in 2018.

    Despite adding playmakers Jake Stringer, Devon Smith and Adam Saad in a busy trade period, the Bombers failed to address a lack of midfield muscle in the wake of Jobe Watson’s retirement.

    While talented, the midfield lacks grunt given the likes of Zach Merrett, David Zaharkis, Dyson Heppell, Darcy Parish and Brendon Goddard aren’t pure contested ball winners.

    “I think that as exciting as they are, good, strong, tough and physical sides through the middle of the ground might still bash them up,” Wallace told SEN’s The Run Home.

    “They’re not big.

    “If they get hold of you they’ll kick some big scores but if its tough and hard, can they match it?

    “That’s my biggest concern.


    https://www.sen.com.au/news/2017/11/21/bombers-might-get-bashed-up-says-plough/
     

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  2. Catsnlakers

    Catsnlakers Club Legend

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    For a "List Manager" Plough has a pretty putrid history in that space.....His opinion should be taken with a huge grain of salt.....I do hope he's right though. :)
     
  3. Jobe Watson

    Jobe Watson Brownlow Medalist

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    Plough is an idiot. How can anyone call Dyson Heppell 'soft'?
     
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  4. peppy la pew

    peppy la pew Brownlow Medallist

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    Bloody hell Teff you should know better than reference an article by Terry Tan.
     
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  5. PowerForGood

    PowerForGood Brownlow Medallist

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    Um no.
    They might get beat but it won't be because of that.
     
  6. schmuttt

    schmuttt Premium Platinum

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    A lot of people bash Terry but he’s got a decent point here. I think Essendon have literally every base covered on their list except inside mids, and I’m not as optimistic as their coaches seemingly are at getting the required improvement in that area from within the club.
     
  7. nanganator

    nanganator Premium Gold

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    Give me the quote where he calls Heppell soft. He says he isn't a pure contested ball winner and that there are more physically dominant midfield's around that can get a hold of Essendon's, do you disagree on that?
     
  8. Jobe Watson

    Jobe Watson Brownlow Medalist

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    It was a self-aware joke, but anyway. Heppell made an All-Australian team averaging the same number of clearances as Viney, Cotchin and Beams did this year. He isn't a "pure contested ball winner" like a Kennedy or Cripps, but he's more than capable on the inside.

    We finished last for clearances in 2017 so I'm sure we do need an inside midfield bull. But then again, Richmond supposedly needed another KPF because their midget forward line wouldn't work. We'll have to see how our midfield actually functions in games throughout the season, and see what the new names (Langford, McGrath, Laverde, Smith, Stinger, Mutch) can add to it in 2018.
     
  9. Rich01

    Rich01 Premiership Player

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    No. They have recruited well and should improve on last year. Anything less than winning a final would be seen as disappointing.
     
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  10. Bunk Moreland

    Bunk Moreland Brownlow Medallist

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    Midfield is pretty young and light. Rest of the lineup is fine.

    They’ll need to bulk up. Anyone know of any sports science gurus?
     
  11. La Dispute

    La Dispute La Dispute

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    Probably happy to concede the clearances and back their system - slingshoot it as fast as possible and get it into the hands of their forwards.

    Daniher, Hooker, Stringer, Smith, Fantasia and Tipungwuti is dangerous as **** on paper.
     

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  12. Kipz

    Kipz Norm Smith Medallist

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    They should target Ben Cunnington in next years trade period
     
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  13. Snake_Baker

    Snake_Baker Brownlow Medallist

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    They would have to come back at the end of 2020, or make us the greatest offer of all time.

    Even then, I don't think Ben would go. I expect his contract will get extended next season.
     
  14. Harlequin Dream

    Harlequin Dream Team Captain

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    I agree with his point.

    I think out of the top 10 teams going into this year we have the weakest inside midfield.

    We might be able to mitigate it a bit with our spread of well-balanced midfielders. Merrett, McGrath, Parish, and Smith will all be capable inside and out despite not being inside beasts.
     
  15. Bokonon_

    Bokonon_ Cancelled

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    People said the same about the Crows last year. Sloane and the Crouch brothers stepped up to make them competitive. I'd back our mids against the Crows at the clearances, stats back that up. Beating their team is a different story, and we haven't been able to manage that.
    My point is clearances do matter but it's not everything.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2017
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  16. juss

    juss Brownlow Medallist

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    I don't think they'll win the flag, but not because they are soft, I just think they lack a true game breaker in the middle of the ground, they need a match winner in the centre. Who was the last premiership team to win a flag without a match winner in the middle?
     
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  17. BOMBERS 4 LIFE!!!!

    BOMBERS 4 LIFE!!!! Premium Gold

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    Yep agree 2018 would be massive failure if we don’t win a final or 2
     
  18. Kangaroos4eva

    Kangaroos4eva Hall of Famer

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    Doubt he'll go anywhere, although he was linked to the Crows at some point this year for some reason.

    They have some younger inside types, like Dylan Clarke and co, but they probably lack that premier inside bull that a lot of sides have atm.
     
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  19. BOMBERS 4 LIFE!!!!

    BOMBERS 4 LIFE!!!! Premium Gold

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    Yeah some of our transition last year was bloody quick it didn’t give give teams a chance to set up a zone.
     
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  20. GUMBLETRON

    GUMBLETRON Premium Gold

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    Not sure about softness, but size is a definite issue. The trouble they had containing JPK is evidence enough, and that equivalent 190cm/90kg midfielder isn't on the list, or at least isn't anywhere near ready. There is potential in the likes of Laverde, Francis and Begley, but at the moment it's just that and still a few seasons away. And, as the likes of Cripps, Oliver and even Cunnington demonstrate, a single dominant (unprecedented even) clearance player can't work miracles on their lonesome.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2017
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  21. BOMBERS 4 LIFE!!!!

    BOMBERS 4 LIFE!!!! Premium Gold

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    If we had some like JPK in the middle would pencil us in for a flag.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2017
  22. Harlequin Dream

    Harlequin Dream Team Captain

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    I am pretty confident that we can shred most teams with ball movement. It will be interesting to see how the top teams handle us.
     
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  23. Gavin Excell

    Gavin Excell Brownlow Medallist

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    Shred most teams?

    I must be in the minority in thinking Essendon will struggle to make the 8
     
  24. gavaniacono

    gavaniacono Norm Smith Medallist

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    Thats what she said.
     
  25. Leather Poisoning

    Leather Poisoning Moderator

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    Makes a solid point here. Think they might be H&A heroes/September zeroes again.