There were some season-defining games in round 11, and Essendon’s win in the west was one.
This week on the Real Footy podcast, Michael Gleeson, Caroline Wilson and Jake Niall discuss the turnaround at the Bombers, from a “lost year” in 2020 to Saturday night’s phenomenal win.
Was Ben Rutten stymied last year? Were the players lacking a tough edge from their coaches that they have gained this season? And how have Darcy Parish and Dyson Heppell turned their form around?
Essendon next face Richmond in the Dreamtime clash, which shapes as a very intriguing match. It will be a massive game in the context of the season, with Essendon breathing down Richmond’s neck for a spot in the eight.
The season-defining games lie ahead for Richmond, but Tiger fans got a taste of things to come thanks to Callum Coleman-Jones’ performance against Adelaide. He’s out of contract and has plenty to play for with half a season remaining. And Jack Riewoldt played a leader’s game against the Crows. Was his mark better than his cousin Nick’s famous SCG grab?
Meanwhile, Collingwood’s loss to Geelong was an eyesore, and Jonathan Brown was among the critics of the Pies’ ball movement. But coach Nathan Buckley said positive was a word they used to describe the match. As off-field drama continues at the club, the Pies’ game style does not build any confidence.
And at Carlton, there look to be some tough days ahead for coach David Teague as “pivotal” change looms at the end of the season. The Blues also lack a football director, so will they look outside the club to help make any football department changes?
Also this week: the teams that appear set to benefit from the mini-exodus from Victoria, Melbourne cement their premiership favouritism, and should the Saints look at trading out some of the players they brought in as top-ups – if they can?
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