Baguely Hartley Ambrose
Goddard Hurley Saad
McKenna Heppell Zaka
Stringer Daniher Stewart
Walla Hooker Green
TBC Myers Zerrett
Smith McGrath Parish Begley
Baguely Hartley Ambrose
I wonder how our backline would go against our forward line. I think we’d easily kick 20 goals.
The most intriguing thing for me is that Adelaide will be a very different team to last time with Walker, (Brad?) Couch and Brodie Smith (all injured) and Lever (to Melbourne) all missing.
Their replacements will be significantly inferior (the same for us with our best players out), somewhat balanced by the inclusion of Gibbs who may well end up playing off HB to replace Smith.
Right now we really only have to replace two players - Fantasia and Gleeson. Fantasia’s replacement will be no near as threatening and and Gleeson’s won’t be as a good an intercept mark but is unlikely to turn the ball over as much by foot or get pushed out of the way so easily.
Then we include Smith, Stringer, Saad.
If we consider Gleeson’s replacement being a neutral impact, Fantasia’s being negative and the 3 recruits being a positive, that makes us +2 personnel wise from last year. I’ll assume, for now, that Hurley and Zaharakis will both be fine (and I think Fogdog has posted as much)
Adelaide, on the other hand, are -3 comparatively.
A good player out, I think, costs a team about 1-2 goals relative to their replacement coming from outside the best 22. So, comparatively, we are “+5” personnel wise relative to Adelaide which translates to a 5-10 goal advantage. Let’s split the difference and say we enjoy a 7.5 goal (45 points) advantage relatively because of the teams’ respective injury and trading situations.
The venue is again Etihad where the Crows beat us late last year by 43 points (running away and kicking about the last 4 goals in the game).
So, using the simple approach that leaves us 2 points in front i.e. the injury/trade situations are heavily in our favour coming into Round 1.
Given Walker’s replacement is likely to be a first gamer, sending Hooker back would be a complete waste and cost us at the forward end of the ground. I don’t think Ridley is anywhere near fit enough for Round 1 - if he was, I would definitely play him on Fogarty in Round 1. First gamer on first gamer, it’s a calculated risk worth taking.
Their most dangerous tall forward, with Walker out, is actually McGovern and I would send Hurley to him. Jenkins is a downhill skier, but a damaging one, if their midfield gets on top and Ambrose would struggle for height. Hartley needs to take him (unless Mitch Brown gets fir in time, His injury history is against him). As it is, Ambrose is a perfect match up for Lynch.
That leaves Fogarty and I think Goddard is a logical match up both size wise and the fact he would only be Adelaide’s 5th/6th best forward allowing Goddard to regularly roll off him.
It goes back to how it goes in the middle and we desperately need Myers and Devon Smith, in particular, to reprise their JLT2 form.
In the forward half I would be seriously tempted to stretch Adelaide for height and play 4 talls ourselves by bringing McKernan in given his sparkling - and for the first time in his entire career, consistent - pre-season form. I think he would hit the scoreboard more than Begley (the logical replacement for Fantasia), offer insurance both in the ruck and also by allowing Hooker to be released to go back if required. All on top of causing match-up headaches in Adelaide’s coaching box.
In fact, I would start the game with Hooker as a spare down back for the first 10 minutes just to ensure Adelaide don’t convert easy, early clearances into 3-4 goals. McKernan can play in Hooker’s role and we still have 3 talls. The onus is on Tippa and Green to really pressure the Adelaide spare defender in that period.
My team would be:
FB McNiece Hurley Hartley
HB Saad Ambrose Goddard
C Zaharakis Z.Merrett McGrath
HF Tippa Daniher Stewart
FF Green Hooker McKernan
Rucks Bellchambers Heppell Smith
Int,. Stringer Myers McKenna Parish
Note: Stringer is our real X Factor player and Adelaide will be worried where he plays. I would start him on the bench and keep them guessing for the first 5 minutes. He will also be a bundle of nerves (as he was for JLT1) and that would be the best way to settle him. When he runs on, the home crowd will roar and it will give him confidence and the team a lift.
I have been quite unconventional but I think we need to be to win the game. “Business as usual” is likely to see the same result as last time not withstanding the personnel changes being heavily in our favour.
You don’t get a different result by doing what you’ve done before that failed.
Not sure if Woorsha is aware of this maxim.
i think we’ll get smashed by 40+ but seriously …mitch brown. If hes name is getting mentioned round one we are farked!!!
Thanks, Dr Reid?
In both the team selection video and post-match press conference, Worsfold mentioned him as a player missing from our first choice team.
I think if Hartley is to be getting a game he needs to start playing like someone who wants to be there. Get some fight and spirit in him. Need someone that forwards don’t want to be on, someone they fear.
How do you feel about playing NLM in the ruck. Might work.
Matt Crouch played on weekend, and there was no report of an injury. He is their best player is my opinion, better than Sloane. If he were to miss that would be a big bonus. What injury are they suggesting he has? You sure they aren’t mixing up with his brother who aint as good.
It’s B Crouch with the injury
Charlie Cameron as well.
There is “different” and then there is “stupid”.
Playing NLM in the ruck in a final falls into the latter category".
That in fact set a new benchmark in “stupid”.
Yet Hardwick puts Grigg in the ruck and he’s a ■■■■■■■ genius.
Not sure 5mins a quarter when Nank on bench can be considered in same vein as NLM as our main ruck vs Maric.
Also, if you are comparing personnel from our last clash with the Crows.
We need to remember that Fanta missed that game with his torn hammy, and Zerrett sat out thru suspension.
Has Fanta been ruled out… or is there still a little bit of hope?!!
The one change I wanna see is
Out: Parnell and the umpiring department bias against Essendon that we saw last week.
Only 1 game since 1971 had more free kicks and that was for South Melbourne a now defunct club.
What I’m expecting:
Saad ambrose Hurls
Conor Hartley (brown) bj
McGrath hepp Smith
Tbell parish Zerret
Tippa JD Stewart
Stringer hooker green
Myers Zaha Begley # (bags, mcniece, DEA)
Emg: langford, smack, (defender)
Stringer is basically a small forward in a medium forwards body. He can primarily fill the Fanta role for now and pinch hit in the middle. The extra size and flexibility DEA would provide as the seventh defender probably wouldn’t hurt. I’d like to see McGrath get a bit more time under the ruckman’s feet.