#35 Matt Guelfi - Welcome to the Midfield


Zaharakis… Watson… Zach Merrett…


to move the completely unrelated to Guelfi stats wrangling to it’s appropriate place:


Drafted as a midfielder, played midfield as a u18
Drafted as a midfielder, played midfield as a u18
Drafted as a midfielder, played midfield as a u18 (though he did start on a hff after not having a preseason in his u18 year)

I’m not talking about blokes who played fwd for the first year or two of an AFL career while they bulked up and built a tank. I’m talking about blokes who didn’t even play mid as juniors, but which we decide to turn into mids anyway. Like NOB. Or Langford.


Until Knights realised he was a ruckman


But Begley, who played under 18s as a midfielder, is a forward.
I get it.


You’re probably right but there is another possible factor which you didn’t address. Maybe the club realised that our stoppage strategies were poor and have since taken steps to address that.

Of course, if you don’t have the personnel it doesn’t matter how good your stoppage strategies are. However, the club may think that it’s personnel are good enough to match most teams if they have the right set ups.


Out of those players only Lee was a specialist midfielder. O’Brien a lead-up forward who didn’t have the pace for the roll, Hunter a HBF/mid, Skipworth a half-forward and Webster a utility.


Begley player most of his last junior year as a forward before getting some midfield time in the later parts of the year.


I had to google Webster to remember who he was.

What does bringing up a bunch of failed and obscure late round and rookie picks prove about recruiting and development?



This time last year I was despondent about our forward line. While we still have problems kicking straight, we are 100% PURE EXCITMENT DOWN THERE NOW.

Fixed in one year.

In WOOSHA we trust.

He is showing ultimate confidence in the previously mentioned players; the 2-4 year players need to step up.


Which proves he can never develop.


I think Guelfi’s drafting might be along the lines of Hooker’s drafting:

  • promising junior gets serious injury/illness and falls off the radar during rehab and coming back to normal
  • peers naturally go past and so do the next batch because their the next batch is “younger”

I expect the club took him as late as we did because we knew no other club was interested.

He might prove an inspired selection. He is certainly physically “ready” to play senior football from Round 1 next year.

He has the 3 key things the clubs seems to really want in its recruits: good foot skills, speed & endurance.

The questions is which role will he fill if he came in because it seems he can play any non-KP/Ruck role on the ground.


IIRC the AFL talent scouts asked Begleys coach to move him into midfield later in season to see how he would go. And he dominated.

I expect he will see plenty of opportunity in VFL midfield next year. And build towards a senior spot.


We are above average in Centre clearances but dead set last in stoppage clearances around the ground.

Overall we were very poor at winning clearances.

Worse - and what those stats don’t show - is how poor we were at putting pressure on the opposition when they won a centre clearance. it happened in the first 15 minutes of the last H&A game at Freo which was a harbinger to exactly what happened against Sydney for most of Q2 in the final.

Our lack of pressure around a centre clearance/stoppage ball is the real issue first and foremost. That improves and suddenly that easy handball out by the opposition to one of their teammates in space gets chopped out and we either get to crumb that and send the ball our way or we create a second stoppage.


This so much this!!!


I’m more worried about this than anything.


Is this a mental thing, or a set up problem-Or both???


I really like the look of this guy and can’t understand why he didn’t get drafted by someone last year! I’ve not seen a clear explanation anywhere. (Footy Prophet lists his only ‘question mark’ as his versatility! WTF?

Can any Claremont watchers offer an explanation?


Totally agree with the notion that easy opposition clearances were one of our key weaknesses.
However we have already made a major move to address this.
McKenna gone ( and not the Irish one).

Guelfi, Langford, Parish will all benefit.