Something seriously wrong with the club (Part 1, May 2019)

It seems to me there is something seriously wrong with the club. It’s not just the playing list, it’s not just the coaches, and it’s not the saga.
There has to be something in the entire make up of the club that has led us to where we are now.
We use the saga as an excuse for the rot that has set in. But the saga is not an excuse, I think it was symptom. Bomber said when he got there that the club had serious problems with professionalism.
It seems as though we still do. The first few matches of the season saw our side seriously underprepared for the season ahead, as it was last year. We have anecdotal evidence that when players transfer into the club from other clubs they are more accustomed to a much tougher fitness and/or training regime.
The evidence seems to be staring us in the face. Yet we make excuses.

I think we as a club need to face facts that there is something seriously wrong with the entire club. I don’t know what it is, I don’t have anything to do with the club apart from being a member and it’s a bit difficult to be involved from Queensland.

We certainly made structural changes after the saga, but the mindset of the club doesn’t appear to have changed at all.
It seems to be “we are Eseendon therefore greatness will come.” It’s almost as though the club sees success as a right without having to do the hard yards.

I don’t know how to fix this, I have no idea what can be done. But I am interested in what others might think or know.



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I blame the fans. It’s our fault really.


Few honestly sessiona wif da boyz, mate this group is ready to crack in aye


Shouldn’t all these new threads be put in the truth thread?

Come at me

I loved the truth thread. no lie

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Does anybody know of a place that delivers chicken manure in bulk to the Tullamarine area?


You only have to look at the last piece of play last night. The players know the siren could go at any second and instead of bombing into deep into the forward line we chip it to a guy on the flank on an angle 60 metres out

Our whole system and structure and the mindset is wrong.


Well Heppell and worsfold talk enough of it, so maybe check with them

Thats the team. I think there is something wrong with the whole club

My opinion, and I’m not intending to get into a shitfest argument about it.

Bomber is hardly the person, or kind of person I would really give much credence to regarding professionalism. Yeah, I’ve gone there. I could go into this in depth - but I won’t here. Suffice to say, he was a very good player and captain, and at times, coach. He’s also made some pretty spectacular unprofessional decisions. I would not hang my hat on that old quote that gets trotted out so often.

This is basically - untrue.
Stringer has been recorded saying that he has never been fitter.
Saad has said that he has had to increase his tank and glad to be out of that environment.
Smith has said that training at Essendon is more focussed on skills than fitness as a point of difference, compared to the Giants - understandable, since he comes from a team of young elite 1st round picks with exquisite skills.
Sheil has said similar to Smith.

I do.
We aren’t winning enough games. That’s about it. Yes, there may be personnel and players that are not right up there with the best, and yes, we should always be looking to bring in the very best that we can. In my opinion, there is no insidious cancer growing and spreading in the club which leads us to be this 15 year mediocre club. We haven’t got it right. Sooner or later, this will hopefully fall into place.

We’ve made a great many changes, in just about every element of the club. They may still not be right - and I expect that they are not, yet.

This not a fault of supporters, but is definitely a purely supporter-mentality. The club do not think this.

That’s my two cents - I’m not debating it.



Spivs use the club, matches and coteries as business networking opportunities. This is the priority for the board and exec too… what can I get out of this club personally.

Reckon this attitude has infiltrated into the playing and coaching group too. Players join/stay because the coin is good, standards are low and there’s good post-footy opportunities with wealthy club affiliates afterwards.

We are a lure for spivs like Corcoran, Neeld, and McKenna who know the sh8t they spin will be lapped up by the spivs on the board who are responsible for the DD… despite their work history being deplorable, spivs will employ those cut from the same cloth as them.

Not that close to the club, but close enough to know that this isn’t too far from the truth.


The short answer is yes I believe there is and have for some time.

Articulating it is more difficult without sounding trite but simply, I believe we are so caught up in optics that football runs a distant second. Dan Richardson as head of footy doesn’t impress me.

It feels like we’re flying off field, we’re so focused on the corporate that we’re completely missing the important. Of course a lot of it is understandable. Rebuilding the brand and the club post saga was a massive job and Xavier and his team has done it well. What we’re missing is footy vision. Someone who can get the entire footy department and playing list moving in the same direction. Someone who can sell that vision to the members and fans.

I’m probably not doing a very good job of explaining it but it’s not one thing… it’s hundreds of little things …the club just feels wrong, insincere, disingenuous, aloof and the thing that concerns me most… more disconnected from its fan base than ever.


Is the rumor that David Myers can not be dropped true?
If yes - there is one of the problems.
Woosha is just not tough enough.


I don’t think that is the mindset.

I think the mindset is: “We are in the entertainment industry and as long as the members keep buying tickets and the TV rights keep coming in, we don’t need to do anything else”

The administrators hang around until they get promoted to a gig somewhere else (e.g. Auld, Robinson, Hamilton, etc).

The President basks in the limelight of being the Perfect Man, and will go unchallenged until he wants to move on, at which time someone else will get the tap on the shoulder and a secret handshake. Board members rarely get challenged and only seem to lose if they are up against a former player who wants in.

As for the players, they know that all they have to do is not be among the worst two or three on the list at the end of the season and they will get their contract renewed. They are on big coin, so why bother doing more? Just have fun and enjoy the experience, like Hep and Myers after the siren last night.

When did this start? The early signs were when the Board decided that they would ignore what members and fans wanted, instead they would get more $ by going to Docklands rather than staying at the MCG, particularly relishing the prospect of having fans locked out at the smaller stadium. (And wasn’t that move a great decision?)

But probably the real malaise started when Peter Jackson got into a position of influence at the club. He botched the salary cap, which directly led to losing experienced Premiership players. That definitely affected morale, club culture and performance. Then over the next years, he strangled the footy department budget; bungled handling Sheedy’s succession, treating a club legend disgracefully; then after announcing they would “get the best coach in Australia” (NB not just “best available”) appointed Knights, who was probably among the worst coaches at the time in the VFL.

Knights had a poisoned chalice, made worse by the penny pinching in the football department. His tenure really established the culture of mediocrity at the Club.

It briefly looked like it was turning around under James Hird as coach. But then Vlad [email protected] himself when he was told there would be investigations of the drug taking that had flourished under his watch (and which WCE, Hawthorn, Geelong, and Collingwood, at least, had benefited from by winning flags). So he needed an unsuccessful, but rich and compliant club to take the fall as the scapegoat. We are still suffering the consequences of that decision to inflict the Saga on us.

There you go. A potted history of how mediocrity came to be installed as club culture at a once successful and admired club.


Can the fans chanting We are Essendon… please stop because we are what??? compliant, indecisive etc…


Bomber Thompson said we’d never be any good until everyone associated with the Saga has left the club. I think he’s right. Further, we need a new administration who insist on an accountable coach who, in turn, insists on accountable players. We seem to have neither. The mediocre seems to be acceptable and has been for at least 15 years. I remember the 1970s, they were dark times. We’ve now passed the number of years in which we didn’t win a final - 1968 to 1983 and 2004 to ??? It’s a disgrace. Change is needed.