Wooden spoon decider won't get Woosha watching
Callum Twomey August 27, 2016 6:30 PM
ESSENDON coach John Worsfold won't be watching Sunday's clash between the Brisbane Lions and St Kilda with extra interest, despite the game being set to decide this year's wooden spoon.
The Bombers gave themselves a chance of avoiding last place on the ladder with a 24-point win over Carlton at the MCG on Saturday, which lifted them equal on points with the 17th-placed Lions.
The Lions have a 0.5 per cent lead on Essendon, but Worsfold said he had little interest in the game at Etihad Stadium, which will also decide who takes the prized No.1 draft pick.
"Who are [St Kilda] playing? I honestly didn't know who Brisbane were playing, or when they were playing and I'm not too fussed," Worsfold said after his team's victory.
The 2006 West Coast premiership coach said he had not followed the story lines throughout the season about Essendon potentially claiming its first wooden spoon since 1933.
WATCH: John Worsfold's full post-match press conference
"To be honest I won't be looking at the result. I haven't looked at it all year to see where we've sat with other clubs and what scenarios could take place," Worsfold said.
"For the Essendon Football Club, they're a very proud club and … it's not something they enjoy doing [winning the wooden spoon] and it hasn't been a part of their history, so if we avoid that, that would be wonderful. It's not something I'm sitting there praying for."
The Bombers' third win of their challenging 2016 campaign came with a dominant display over the Blues, who were back at the MCG a week after spoiling Melbourne's finals plans.
But Essendon stopped Carlton from repeating those efforts, and reached the 100-point barrier for the first time this season.
What about this effort from Walla?! #AFLDonsBlues https://t.co/iLCNukNc7W
— AFL (@AFL) August 27, 2016
The Bombers can take some enthusiasm from the last-round win but Worsfold said it wouldn't guarantee improvement ahead of 2017.
"These players haven't lost momentum or lost faith at any point. It's nice to win, but all our messages have been – regardless of wins and losses – that it's about the effort we're putting in and what we're trying to achieve," he said.
"It's nice to finish with a win but the momentum doesn't come from that, it comes from our desire to continue to get better."
Key forward Joe Daniher was exceptional against the Blues with five goals to take his season tally to 43 – a career-best for the 22-year-old.
Much has been said about Daniher's kicking accuracy this year but after two shaky misses early against Carlton, the Bombers forward kicked brilliantly at goal, including roosting a long shot from inside the centre square.
Worsfold left the game encouraged by what he has seen from Daniher this year, and is already looking forward to seeing how he can develop his game ahead of next season.
"He's a quality footballer who's got a bright future ahead. But he's like us as the Essendon Football Club. We've got a lot of hard work ahead to reach where we want to get to," he said.
"Joe's the same, he's still a very young footballer but I see the desire for him to do the work to become the footballer I know he can be."
Daniher is dominating at the 'G! #AFLDonsBlues #ohwhatafeeling https://t.co/GThGTJUAzH
— AFL (@AFL) August 27, 2016
Essendon used its final game to thank its 10 top-up players for their service across the year, with defender Matt Dea using the occasion to again show he is worthy of a permanent place on the club's list.
The Bombers can automatically sign him as a delisted free agent from November 1.
Essendon supporters showed their own appreciation to the team after the game with a sea of red and black remaining at the MCG as the players ran around the boundary, while legendary coach Kevin Sheedy and former chairman Paul Little were among a packed changerooms after the game.
"[The win] typified the endeavor that they've showed all year, often against teams that were way too powerful for us," Worsfold said of the result.
"But those teams even knew they had to fight hard to win the game against us. Today's energy and effort typified what our supporters have been proud of all year."