Training We'd. 23/3/16 - We're training like winners!

Training at Tullamarine on the McCracken Oval in balmy conditions.

Excellent atmosphere at training today, ebullient, jovial and above all eager. Wily Worsfold told the players that the team wouldn’t be picked until after training which may account for some of the enthusiasm but based on what I saw today expect a good effort against Gold Coast and probably a win.

Ball movement was quicker and more direct today and the usual skill errors of dropped marks and mis directed kicks were still there but basically the players were blending together as well as I have seen so far in a short sharp session which was punctuated by a noisy, enthusiastic session of contested work in the hangar.

I didn’t see Jamar, Ashby did some walking on the boundary line. Grima did some laps moving well and looking physically menacing while Tom Wallis is running well and looks on track for a successful recovery.
The only down side was Fantasia who looked like he hit his head on the ground when laying a tackle and he walked off shakily with the doctor. His pace is good but I suspect he needs to be a bit more decisive with his ball use so I suspect he won’t be selected just yet even if okay after his knock.

Bird was a little more prominent today in the early drills today and assisted with the plan to move the ball through the middle. In one passage of play Walla and Zac Merret did particularly well with a coach praising them for “great ball movement, fantastic Zacy, Walla, opened up the whole of the ground.” I know that you will enjoy reading about one of Walla’s tricks - running up the ground with the ball he saw out of the corner of his eye a player in a good position, parallel and to his right. Without looking he kicked the ball off the outside of his boot at right angles for a perfect look-away pass.

Langford and LaVerde both took good overhead marks. Langford ran well all over the ground and is developing into a very good player indeed as he transitions from being a good Teal Cup player to learning to cope with the pressure of the AFL game. LaVerde and Francis both look promising but are probably not doing enough yet to get selected. LaVerde has had an interrupted preseason and Francis also needs to build up his fitness.

Parish is a chance to play winning a lot of possessions while the veteran Kelly rarely missed a target. I think Jackson Merret will be in as he is winning more of the ball than in the past although I feel that his disposal has dropped away a little this year.

I must conclude with two of the things that make Essendon such a good club. Harry, the doyen of security and spy detection, brought along some of his home made scones before training (a secret recipe using lemonade and cream apparently) and his wife Jean provided her excellent plum jam - how good is that!
In keeping with a long standing tradition at Essendon Mark Doran, better known around the club as the Phantom, addressed the players before their first game. His text was “Do the little things well.” but his really sage advice was “When you’re kicking for goal ignore the little man in your head!”

The fabric of this football club is outstanding - look forward to a win first up.

A win would be soooo good

Great report. Nice to hear (and get a visual) of something really positive. Looking forward to Saturday.

Wily Worsfold told the players that the team wouldn't be picked until after training
And in another thread it says Kelly was congratulating Parish (on his supposed inclusion).

What to believe?!?

Great optimism Jackie considering some of your recent offerings had been a little flat on the back of poor showings from the team. Noted in the Herald Sun, all bar 1 expert (Ralph, I think) picked Essendon to finish stone motherless last! On that basis it will be a miracle for Essendon to beat the Ablett led Suns. Good to hear the boys had a good session and, fingers crossed, Parish plays.

Thanks Jackie. Love your ebullient reporting! A win would be perfect for us right now!

good to be hearing about footy, makes a welcome change, thanks Jackie!

Appreciate the report.

That’s a very encouraging report, just what’s needed as the season is about to begin.

Did Leuenberger train, and how did he go if he did? Do you think he’s likely for Round 1; if not, who do you think will be our first ruck? I hope not McKernan; he’s just not quite big enough. I’d love to see him as an on-baller though: he’s fit enough and he’s so hard at the ball that I think he’d be great in a Goddard-type role. And as an on-baller he wouldn’t attract a specialist backman opponent when he went into our half.

I won’t be expecting a win. I never do; wins always have to be earned on the day. Hoping, yes; believing it’s possible, yes; but not expecting.

Thanks Jackie. Love your ebullient reporting! A win would be perfect for us right now!
"Club bosses have come out swinging amongst concerns that the strife-ridden Bombers have been granted unprecedented and unfair advantages in the wake of the drugs scandal that has crippled the game for more than three years."

Yeah, fark 'em.

Mmmmmmmmm … scones.

Great Work Jackie! Who do you think will be our number 1 ruck this game? Jamar or Leunberger? Or do you think it will be a combo of Mckernan, Daniher, Grimley?

Great Work Jackie! Who do you think will be our number 1 ruck this game? Jamar or Leunberger? Or do you think it will be a combo of Mckernan, Daniher, Grimley?

Grimley is probably not highly regarded as a ruckman but may develop as a full forward. I think Jamar is injured but the plan has always been for Luenberger to be first ruck and I would expect him to play on Saturday.

Man, that’s the most positive training report I can recall. Hope you’re right Jackie. Thanks for the effort.

Great Work Jackie! Who do you think will be our number 1 ruck this game? Jamar or Leunberger? Or do you think it will be a combo of Mckernan, Daniher, Grimley?

Grimley is probably not highly regarded as a ruckman but may develop as a full forward. I think Jamar is injured but the plan has always been for Luenberger to be first ruck and I would expect him to play on Saturday.

Thanks Jackie. Look forward to seeing him run around.

Was having a ■■■■ day. Now feeling positive. Thanks JM, that’s all it takes.

I know we’re all hoping for a win but I tell you what - if these guys simply go out and simply play some good footy I’ll be rapt. I don’t ask for much, just play some good footy.

GO PARISH…good to hear

Parish and Langford would be nice

Thanks Jackie. Very upbeat. Makes up for all the crap “drug cheats” comments that come my way each morning walking in Broadbeach. If I’m not in jail by Saturday I hope to see your prediction come true.
PS Can’t believe you really think Jackson Merrett will be selected. This would be a bad mistake!

Paying $5 for the win.

Might be worth a lazy $20.

I must conclude with two of the things that make Essendon such a good club. Harry, the doyen of security and spy detection, brought along some of,his home made scones before training (a secret recipe using lemonade and cream apparently) and his wife Jean provided her excellent plum jam - how good is that!

Not anymore, I guess…

Nice report, Jackie.