#35 Matt Guelfi - Welcome to the Midfield


We draft a 20 year old inside mid, who can play elsewhere, and 4 blokes immediately want to turn him into a Back Pocket / HBF ?
And it’s Dodoro who cops it for drafting HBF’s ??


Both Dodoro and Woosha said he can play Midfield, Forward and Back so it’s probably not that strange.


Only if you you want to push the “Dodoro doesn’t draft mids, only HBF’s” line.
Give it 3 months and half of Blitz will think he was originally a back, and there’ll be wailing about our lack of inside mid depth.
On second thoughts - give it 3 days.


I don’t follow the theory that Dodoro only drafts flankers.

I’m one of Langford and Begleys biggest advocates for midfield and based on the little I have seen of Houlihan he looks to be a potential mid to me.

I just think to play mid in the AFL you have to have at least one outstanding attribute if not more.

His first season at VFL level will be a big one for him to show how much more development is left in him.


I see it as best case scenario he is a mid with a bit of pace and good skills who is an upgrade on Jobe last year. Mid Range he is Ben Howlett but a bit quicker and worst case scenario he is cover for bags


Where is this cover for Bags coming from?

We already have McNeice whose showing plenty of promise as a small defender.

Guelfi is a midfielder, who is versatile enough to play variety roles it was noted.

However …“We wanted to add some grunt to our midfield” being what Dodoro said.

With losing Hocking, Howlett, Bird…Myers average… and a lot of our younger players lacking in actual midfield experience seems a good selection.


Gees he can hoof the ball.

In the highlights, he snapped a ball out of congestion and it went about 55-60 meters.


Alternatively “we have McNiece, but he’s only played 2 senior games and spent most of the season injured”


This may be so, however pre-whiplash he was playing superbly in VFL hence his opportunity at AFL level. Back into training again now.

With Dodoro’s comments we only taking 1 rookie pick it would seem as though McNiece may have been shifted off CatB rookie list so he can be used as small defender cover as required.


houlahan has never had more than 18 touches in like 52 junior footy games. why is he moving into the midfield again?


Two of our draft picks have great foot skills. You have got to like that.


For starters he looks to have the tools for it.

Secondly, Dodoro has a history of picking guys with strong technical aspects but little midfield exposure in the hope that they can be developed into midfielders.

Thirdly, we have an abundance of forwards around his height and makeup so it would make little sense to get another one in that would be highly unlikely to work his way in front of what is the best forwardline in the AFL and still very young.


It’s a good point, and i mentioned Bags.


He played 1 VFL game before he got picked for the seniors.

Edit: to be clear, I am totally neutral on McNiece. I thought he looked more or less fine in the seniors, and more or less fine in the VFL games I saw. I don’t think there’s any reason he couldn’t come in and be a perfectly good back pocket, but there’s also no reason at all to think that we don’t need to worry about our back pocket stocks because we have McNiece.



I just wish there was more evidence that this ever actually worked.

Sometimes I think we’re so focused on being clever Machiavellian masters of the draft table that we outsmart ourselves.


Since Worsfold has gotten to the club, there has been an emphasis on 2 main aspects for drafting; quality footskills & leg speed.

After that, they draft according to need.

Any player who doesn’t have these attributes has been delisted or will be delisted.

Any player that has struggled, but has these 2 attributes as a strength has been given more opportunities and new contracts.


We have picked a lot of mids in the second round onwards in the past that haven’t made it but people always overlook that when these discussions come around.

The flankers we currently have on our list with potential to move into midfield are Langford, Laverde and Begley. I personally don’t think thats a heavy investment and at the very least we look to have some serviceable players.

Personally I really like the look of both Langford and Begley to turn into very good mids.

Time will tell though.


Wooshas philosophy is heavy midfield rotations, which is the way the game is.

Other than key position players he expects them to rotate through midfield.


just because dodo has a history of something doesn’t mean you can then assume this is what he has done here. ie. picked a speculative midfielder. clearly it was a best available pick for a high leaping goal kicking half forward. your last point has merit but as you said most of them are speculative midfielders so should be some spots opening up


What makes you think he wont play midfield?