Saturday, 25 August 2007

Super Saturday Slops

Well every man and his dog knew we were going to lose this week anyway, so I don’t think any of us are surprised at the result today but what a traditionally Melbourne move to tease us by playing a competitive first 20 minutes before completely falling apart. I’m so disillusioned by this season that despite looking at the teams on Thursday night and Friday I was still surprised that Buckley and Johnson were playing – nothing against them personally I just want it all to be over.

So for most of the first quarter Fremantle looked flat and we were more than a match for them. Usually I’m terrifically negative about football, but every once in a while even I get sucked in and start to think that maybe something remarkable is going to happen. But this is Melbourne we’re talking about here so it didn’t. In fact after taking a two goal lead in the first quarter it went horribly wrong.

So wrong in fact that the Dockers kicked their highest second quarter score ever. Not tremendously impressive given that they’ve only been around for 12 years, and have spent most of that time losing, but significant nonetheless. Internet connection in Australia almost overloaded during the week from everyone making Pavlich the captain of their fantasy footy team, and he didn’t let them down by ripping Carroll to shreds. You can’t blame NC, after all Pavlich is a freak, but what other options have we got? Ferguson has put on weight this year but still appears to be more emaciated than an anorexic who has been on a desert island for ten years.

I half expected that at any minute Jakovich (not the good one), Shaw or Casey would start talking about how Chris Connolly built the Freo team, and how he could do the same to Melbourne as well. That would have been the cue to pick up the phone and start abusing some poor call centre monkey at Foxtel. Somebody has to feel the wrath for this season, and if it has to be some poor bastard in a call centre in Micronesia who can’t tell the difference between a footy and a coconut then so be it.

For the person who wrote in last week to whinge about my massive anti-Brad Miller agenda and claimed that I never blamed anybody else for being useless this one’s for you. Mark Jamar must go – he is completely inept. Jeff White massacred it in the centre during the first quarter, then the moment he went off for his ‘rest’ and Jamar came on it all started going backwards. We had Paul Johnson in the side as well and it took until we’d copped about five goals in a row until he got a chance. Sad. Miller was surprisingly respectable, but at the same time there is no way that we will have him in our team next year if we’re serious. Johnson ended up on Chris Tarrant at the start of the second half, which is exactly the point he should have walked out, told Mark Riley to piss off and never come back – it’s one thing being played wildly out of position but when it’s on the shittest player ever you have to make some sort of statement. Daniel Ward would be another one dissecting the Adelaide phone book to find an SANFL club to play for next season – he is pretty much G-A-W-N GONE. Though who fucking knows what’s going to happen next year – we’ll probably end up with the same team and win the flag with Miller kicking 12 in the Grand Final for all I know.

The tide was stemmed in the third quarter, but like the woman in The Club who was belted for saying the old guy got shaded in the grand final, the damage was already done. It was good to see some of our guys randomly starting fights to keep themselves amused while the world crumbled around them. The best move was Neita running from inside 50 to belt Ryan Crowley for daring to rough up Lynden Dunn. Nobody believes that we’ve got a team of hard-nuts, but the least we can see is a bit of violence no matter how manufactured it is.

Shockingly enough we actually outplayed Freo in the third, but just like the first we couldn't put the goals on the board to get it closer than five goals. Then the Norwood bound Ward gave away a completely pointless fifty that led to a Jeff Farmer goal and the door was well and truly jammed shut. Against the odds Ferguson did alright on Pavlich, and the wrists of fantasy football players all over the nation were slashed. Ward gave away another free kick, leading to another Farmer goal and Daniel ignored his opportunity to at least leave a legacy by not walking over and dropping the crunt. What's a ten week suspension when you're getting the sack anyway? Suddenly they kicked four in nine minutes and we were 50 points behind again. Either it's a cruel sport or we're inept - and I know which one I favour.

There were signs today. Ignore the second quarter and we went alright. There's some danger, injury plague notwithstanding, that we might be competitive next year. I wouldn't talk finals unless I was extremely drunk but I think 10th or 11th is realistic.

Random Thoughts
Have you ever wanted to go to Subi, find the guy who rings the bell whenever Peter Bell gets it and STAB HIM IN THE FUCKING FACE WITH A BROKEN BOTTLE? I sure have.

How unattractive is Jace Bode's designer stubble? The key to footballing nirvana is not to look like George Michael in the Faith video.

Crowd Watch
In my loungeroom – 2. One left at quarter time, but it still gets counted in the official attendance. After that it was just me and a compulsion to go to the bottle shop next door, buy a truckload of Scotch, neck it and jump under a train.

At Subiaco – Who cares. Win, lose or draw they weren’t making the 8 anyway and we’ll be lucky to make the Top 15. Roll on 2008.

2007 Allen Jakovich Medal Votes

5 - Brad Green
4 - Brock McLean
3 - Jeff White
2 - Nathan Jones
1 - Nathan Brown

Apologies to Robertson, Johnstone, Johnson, Ferguson and Bruce (2nd half only)

Leaderboard

I pledge that this isn't rigged. It's just turned out this way. The way we're going none of them will play next week and it will be a wild 3-way tie.

32 - McDonald
32 - Green
32 - Jones
19 - Bruce
17 - Bate
16 - White
16 - Wheatley (Shock Leader: Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year)
13 - McLean
12 - Johnstone
10 - Rivers
10 - Davey
10 - Holland
10 - Brown
9 - Neitz
8 - Miller
8 - Godfrey
7 - Sylvia
6 - Robertson
6 - Bizzell
6 - Moloney
5 - Yze
5 - Bell
5 - Petterd (Equal Leader: Jeff Hilton Medal for Rookie of the Year)
5 - Newton (Equal Leader: Jeff Hilton Medal for Rookie of the Year)
5 - Carroll
2 - Dunn
1 - Frawley
1 - Pickett
1 - Ferguson


Next Week
Against Carlton at the MCG in what promises to be the worst game ever played. You know that the players won’t want to throw the game, but can you be so sure about the coaching staff? Maybe Mark Riley’s ruckman wankfest this week is designed to the hide the fact that we’re going to tank in Round 22? When the AFL start investigating the club will go “but he had no idea last week either”. Roll on a new coach, even if it is Chris Connolly – I just want to see somebody from outside the club come in and make changes. We can’t afford to have a coach in the chair who has loyalties to players already on the list.

I've been saying for weeks if you don't want us to win next week don't show up. Now even I'm starting to wonder. I'll put it this way - I won't complain if we do. Somebody will and they will hopefully be bashed by everyone in the ground no matter what team they support. I've got to admit it will be funny to see Carlton fans break down if they win.

Next season
Roll on!

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