Sydney are falling right out of flag contention

Cameron Rose Columnist

By Cameron Rose, Cameron Rose is a Roar Expert

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    The Sydney Swans have gone from premiership contender to also-ran in just two weeks. The fall has been swift and brutal.

    Second on the ladder entering their Round 15 clash with Richmond and a chance to go a game clear on top, the Swans end Round 16 outside the top four and falling.

    Sydney have been the most consistent team in the AFL this century. They’ve got a couple of flags to show for their toil, from five grand finals, with plenty of other September appearances. They’ve only missed finals once in the last 15 years.

    The Swans brand has evolved over time, but has usually consisted of a few main facets – a deep midfield of strong bodies well versed in the stoppage craft and specializing in contested possessions, a resilient defence that can absorb forward 50 entries without leaking the corresponding score, and a star forward or two to grab the headlines.

    Sydney’s midfield is no longer strong or deep.

    It was less than two years ago they let Tom Mitchell leave with a minimum of fuss, not overly concerned.

    He was one mid too many when All-Australians Josh Kennedy, Luke Parker, Dan Hannebery and Kieren Jack were on the books, with youngsters Isaac Heeney and Callum Mills rising up and sure to demand minutes through the centre square.

    The wisdom of letting Mitchell go looked iffy at the time and has certainly turned disastrous.

    In his time at the Hawks, he has broken all disposal records, has a top three in the Brownlow on his resume, and is currently raging favourite to take Charlie home this season. Oops.

    Tom Mitchell

    Tom Mitchell of the Hawks. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images)

    Hannebery currently looks like the oldest 27-year-old to ever play the game. No-one has ever questioned his courage, commitment or relentless running, but now it takes him a minute to walk from the kitchen table to the fridge.

    Jack isn’t travelling much better – hasn’t for a while – and may well call it quits at season’s end if he isn’t tapped on the shoulder first.

    He was injured in the first quarter against Geelong on Thursday night but was coming off a one kick game against the heat of Richmond the week before.

    Mills is out for the season and is yet to prove that he can influence games in the middle.

    His football education has taken place in the easiest position on the ground as a half-back that has a license to peel off and intercept. It won’t be a surprise if he’s one of these players who reaches their ceiling early and maintains it from there.

    Thus it has been left to Kennedy, the old dog with a damn fine trick, Parker, all hardness but lacking class except around goals, and Heeney, who is now the premier midfielder at the Swans.

    Josh Kennedy vies for the ball

    (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

    It’s not hard to think we’d see the best of Heeney if he was outside the Sydney system, rather than shackled within. Still, he hasn’t achieved the level yet that he’s capable of, which is being an undeniable top five player in the league, to be mentioned in the same breath as Dusty, Danger, Buddy and Fyfe. He’s in the next wave along with Patrick Cripps, Charlie Curnow and Marcus Bontempelli who can usurp those names at the top.

    Looking at the defensive end, Jake Lloyd is getting more football than ever before which is great for Sydney given he is one of the best kicks in the league. Jarrad McVeigh appears to have turned back the clock, using the ball as ever with a preternatural poise. Heath Grundy continues to get plaudits in what should be the twilight of his career.

    The reason for all of this is because the ball is spending too much time down there. They are a good defensive team, probably a great one, so they do battle on when under-manned. They are incredibly resilient at absorbing opposition entries. Lloyd and McVeigh have been getting plenty of chances to run it out, which leads to an increase in individual numbers.

    But there’s only so much they can take, and the dam wall is breaking against the better teams, due to the lack of midfield depth touched on earlier.

    Where this is mainly being felt is up forward. The Swans just can’t kick scores against good sides.

    Sydney have lost five games this year to Geelong, Richmond, North Melbourne, Adelaide and Port Adelaide.

    Their scores in these games have been 59, 67, 66, 75 and 71 respectively, at an average of 67.6. It’s not enough. It’s not nearly enough.

    The problem is, it’s getting worse. In losses to the Cats and Tigers over the last fortnight, the scoreboard has flattered the Swans. They lost by 12 points to Geelong but had less than half of the Cats scorings shots.

    Against Richmond, they kicked a mercurial 11.1 from their limited opportunities, while conceding double the amount of scores.

    Lance Franklin kicked four goals straight in each of those losses, meaning his accuracy (rarely reliable) made the scoreboard look better than it was, and the other avenues to a goal are severely lacking.

    Lance Franklin of the Sydney Swans

    Lance Franklin and the Swans are in trouble. (AAP Image/Julian Smith)

    Buddy has been as much high half-forward as he has been a deeper target in his time at Sydney, devastating in either role, but even his athletic frame has lost a yard of pace as he hits the wrong side of 30.

    Sydney needs him performing both duties. What they wouldn’t give for a player like Tim Membrey to be leading up out of the square, or pushing higher when Buddy is down there. That’s another oops.

    Callum Sinclair has shown he can be a strong marking target up forward. If only the Swans had someone like Toby Nankervis to take up the rucking duties on his behalf. Triple oops.

    In summary, Sydney has major issues in both the midfield and forward-line, that only really gets exposed against their fellow contenders.

    Their backline is still strong but ultimately breaks down under the weight of entries. There is only so long they can keep the wolves at bay.

    The Swans have an interesting run home against a series of teams that are in the middle of the pack, that have each shown their best and worst throughout the year.

    North, Essendon, Melbourne and Hawthorn are in this group. They also have Collingwood and arch-rivals GWS, who are probably the second and third best teams in it right now.

    Sydney may scrap out a top-four finish. But they won’t be doing anything worthwhile with it. They’re just too limited.

    Cameron Rose
    Cameron Rose

    Cameron Rose is a born and bred Melbournian, raised on a regime of AFL, cricket and horse racing. He likes people who agree with him but loves those that don't, for there's nothing better than a roaring debate. He tweets from @camtherose.

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    The Crowd Says (91)

    • July 10th 2018 @ 7:21am
      IAP said | July 10th 2018 @ 7:21am | ! Report

      You hit the nail on the head with your last sentence Cameron – they’re just too limited. Sydney were never in flag contention They’re always good through hard work and discipline, but they lack a plan B and they lack the out and out stars to get them across the line; they have Franklin and that’s it.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 12:28pm
        The Ghost said | July 10th 2018 @ 12:28pm | ! Report

        Longmire has to go. He has only one game plan.

        Sydney have made mistake after mistake in their recruiting. Buddy was brought to the club to win them multiple flags. Tippet has been a failure. Naismith was kept instead of Nankervis. Tom Mitchell is sorely missed.

        Fresh faces are needed and the geriatrics need to be swept out.

        • July 10th 2018 @ 12:33pm
          George said | July 10th 2018 @ 12:33pm | ! Report

          They’d have won one but for umpires in 2016.

          • July 10th 2018 @ 12:48pm
            IAP said | July 10th 2018 @ 12:48pm | ! Report

            And if your aunt had you know what she’d be your uncle.

            • July 10th 2018 @ 5:29pm
              George said | July 10th 2018 @ 5:29pm | ! Report


              But that was a pro-Vic rort.

              • July 11th 2018 @ 7:30am
                IAP said | July 11th 2018 @ 7:30am | ! Report

                That was the other team being first to the footy and more desperate. The team that wants it more is the team that wins it on grand final day. Don’t blame the umps, blame your players.

          • July 11th 2018 @ 7:28pm
            Bill Posters said | July 11th 2018 @ 7:28pm | ! Report

            Somebody in authority should be reminding the umpires in big matches that it is not the VFL any more. The pro-Victoria bias is blatant. A non-Victoria based team needs to be 40 points better to beat a Victoria team in a grand final. When the Victoria team has not won anything since Adam was a boy (e.g. Western Bulldogs) you can make that 50 points.

        • July 10th 2018 @ 12:36pm
          Aw said | July 10th 2018 @ 12:36pm | ! Report

          Absolutely agree. A fresh start is needed badly

    • Roar Guru

      July 10th 2018 @ 7:31am
      gameofmarks said | July 10th 2018 @ 7:31am | ! Report

      They will be lucky to remain in the 8 by the end of the season IMO.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 10:59am
        Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:59am | ! Report

        Just how the Swans like it – backs against the wall.

        I think we will probably scrape the 8 but that’s just about it. Just got too many important cogs of the machine either busted or out of the game at the moment, and too much reliance on younger guys, who almost by definition are going to be inconsistent.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 2:14pm
        Elliot Heath said | July 10th 2018 @ 2:14pm | ! Report

        I saw you commenting last week that the swans will finish 12th and here you are again I just think you are salty that the swans beat west coast twice clearly proving west coast to be nothing other than pretenders

    • July 10th 2018 @ 7:45am
      Roger of Sydney said | July 10th 2018 @ 7:45am | ! Report

      Bloody annoying article but fair and on the mark.

      The great unknown about the Swans is what the replacement players for the injured can produce. We need Heeney on the park and we need more ball in the forward line. Loosing half our backline has killed us but our forward line has not worked since 2012. The only saving grace is it is a very even average competition at the moment. Not dead yet, not on life support yet but the Swans are coughing and have a fever

      • Roar Guru

        July 10th 2018 @ 9:10am
        JamesH said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:10am | ! Report

        Your forward line has been gutted by the fact that Tippett and Reid have never been able to get a consistent run at it. They are (or were, in Kurt’s case) always injured. If fit and in form, either of them could have been the perfect foil for Buddy and given Sinclair a chop out in the ruck.

        Not getting consistent contributions from at least one of them over the last several years has really hurt. It potentially cost you the 2016 flag.

        • July 10th 2018 @ 10:19am
          Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:19am | ! Report

          A very fair comment JH, and a much fairer summary than others might suggest about the forward line. Tippo was an absolute bust – but the strategy was right. Reid sadly can’t stay on the park. McCartin coming in has helped, but he is very young and raw, and not yet truly a strong goal threat – in time he looks to be an excellent prospect.

          Given Reid’s troubles this year, its suprised me no end that Darcy Cameron has not been given a go yet. He has been doing well in the reserves, and while 2 ruckmen is out of vogue, both Sinclair and Cameron can be more than capable forward line targets. The biggest issue going forward is that for too much of the time its Buddy or nothing in terms of tall targets.

          • July 10th 2018 @ 9:25pm
            Birdman said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:25pm | ! Report

            Gary Rohan’s injuries and inconsistency has hurt them too.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 3:57pm
        GoSwans said | July 10th 2018 @ 3:57pm | ! Report

        Win six in a row and you’re great. Lose two to two of the best teams and you’re rubbish. Have all the media got ADHD?

        All the talk about Hannebery reminds me of Chris Judd and all the talk of how he struggled with groin issues. Can Hannebery get over his issues and return to the form of prior to his PCL injury in 2016.

        The Swans always do a heavy training load in July and it is not unusual for the team to drop some games when looking tired. I’m not panicked. Make the 4 and you never know. Surely the umpires can’t do that 2016 nonsense again.

    • July 10th 2018 @ 8:13am
      Christo the Daddyo said | July 10th 2018 @ 8:13am | ! Report

      I’m not sure letting Mitchell go was quite the disaster that it’s being made out to be. His numbers look great, sure – but where does Hawthorn sit on the ladder again? All those record breaking number of Mitchell’s hasn’t amounted to a hill of beans yet. And may never…

      Sydney’s forward line looked much better with Reid and Papley in it. Reid to provide a second tall as a foil for Franklin and Papley as a quality crumber. Both are out injured. Sinclair could be another option as a tall forward, but he’s going surprisingly well in the ruck and the Swans first choice ruckman is out for the season.

      I’m not sure either Heeney or Mills will ever be true midfielders – Heeney is someone who belongs in the forward line, but rotates through the mids, and Mills looks like he’s most comfortable down back with a licence to go into the midfield when required.

      The big problem is the midfield itself. Jack looks like he’s ready for retirement, Hannebery looks like he’d struggle to play well in the seconds at the moment (even he wasn’t injured) and there’s only so much Parker and Kennedy can do on their own.

      The Swans recruitment department has proven themselves over the years – let’s see if they can do something about the next generation of midfielders…

      • Roar Guru

        July 10th 2018 @ 8:50am
        Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 8:50am | ! Report

        Not sure you’d get any agreeing with you that letting Tom Mitchell go wasn’t an unmitigated disaster Christo. You can’t just find a 35+ inside mid feeding it out in any bargain basement bin. As for the Swans, what an honest team but they seem battle weary to me beyond their years as Cameron refers to with Hanneberry. Why is the question? IMO it is because of the Swans hard in and under scrum footy and also the philosophy of keeping them in contention every year with no rebuild (secret or not). It has taken its toll on the players and they look like a bunch of beaten up 4WD’s, all dented and scratched and with axles barely holding on. They are an admirable bunch but after watching the Tigers take care of them pretty easy and then Geelong beating them at their own style of footy, it would seem Longmire has no aces to play in the finals apart from a battle worn Buddy.

        • July 10th 2018 @ 9:43am
          Christo the Daddyo said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:43am | ! Report

          I’m sure the Swans would have preferred to have kept Mitchell, but calling it an unmitigated disaster is going too far IMHO. Sydney finished above Hawthorn last season and are above them on the ladder (at the moment anyway) this season. Would the presence of Mitchell made a material difference to the Swans’ season last year? I’m not sure about that. Their problems were at each end of the field actually, not in the mids. And I’m not sure anyone predicted such a dramatic fall-off in form from both Hannebery and Jack this year.

          Anyway, both both injured now, Longmire has no alternative but to try some youngsters. Having Heeney and (hopefully) Papley back should improve things. I wonder whether Darcy Cameron might get a call up to the seniors some time this year, which would free up Sinclair to go forward. Might be worth a shot?

          • July 10th 2018 @ 10:03am
            Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:03am | ! Report

            Lining it all up on the Mitchell trade is the easy get out and ‘simple story’ to sell for those that only look at issues once in a blue moon. Of course the swans would have preferred to keep him no doubt, but I completely agree that he is hardly the ‘game changer’ that many suggest he is, otherwise Hawthorn would be Premiership favourites almost by now.

            There is little doubt that midfield depth is an issue to be dealt with – and in many ways it is creating much of the issues being felt in the forward line. In the medium term, the forward line imho is going to sort itself out, even post Buddy. Already we have seen a lot to like from McCartin, Ronke and Papley are both obvious small forward, and potentially with Cameron to slot in to a ruck/forward role, and of course Blakey to come. The future forward line is well on the right track.

            The issue sits in midfield of course and the need to find adequate replacements in there.

            • Roar Guru

              July 10th 2018 @ 1:11pm
              Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 1:11pm | ! Report

              Yes Jim but the Hawks are building a team for their next flag tilt and besides Vickery and perhaps the jury still out on O’Meara, they don’t get much wrong. They were very keen on Mason Cox last year and from my sources, he was set to sign with them until Eddie actually intervened and got him over the line at the Pies. How would the Cox Hawthorn signing be looking now?

              • July 10th 2018 @ 2:23pm
                Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 2:23pm | ! Report

                And the Swans aren’t Peter? The irony is letting Mitchell go in part was exactly part of their strategy going forward for regenerating the team. For what they got back for him, along with the rest of the horse trading, meant they ended up getting Florent and Hayward in that draft. Florent in particular has a boatload of potential and class, and Hayward is no slouch either.

                The rump of the next generation Swans team is already there – and increasingly playing a more important role than the older brigade. Almost of the Swans best 22 in recent weeks has been 23 years or under, with 75 games or under experience (many with a lot less there). I can see the article now in a couple of years time – ‘the secret swans rebuilding project’ when this bunch gets to 100-150 games all together and peak together. There are holes to fill of course in time, but the building blocks are being put into place.

                The Hawks are achieving their regeneration mainly through trading, Swans are achieving the same through astute draft picks and rolling the dice on a few later in the draft that have come up trumps so far. There is work to do, but its ridiculous to suggest that somehow the Swans aren’t thinking for the future in what they are doing with their list management – it couldn’t be further from the truth.

                Maybe they won’t be good enough as a group, but most other clubs would be delighted to have a group coming through like the Swans do with their younger brigade.

              • July 10th 2018 @ 9:32pm
                Birdman said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:32pm | ! Report

                So the Hawks have to be flag faves before the Mitchell trade can be criticised? The guy is close to the best mid in the comp but Swans fans have their heads in the sand rather than concede the club got it wrong.

                Your loss, our gain.

              • July 11th 2018 @ 8:52am
                Christo the Daddyo said | July 11th 2018 @ 8:52am | ! Report

                Birdman – at the time of Mitchell’s departure, the Swans had multiple options of that player type. The club has only been exposed due to a couple of older players dropping off in form alarmingly quickly and markedly – which I challenge anyone to genuinely say they predicted. As others have pointed out, the Swans were able to gain other types of players (which turned out to be Florent and Hayward) that they needed from a team balance point of view.

                And to turn your own argument around, what would it take for you NOT to criticise the trade – a Swans flag?

              • July 11th 2018 @ 9:56pm
                Mark said | July 11th 2018 @ 9:56pm | ! Report

                Sounds like every Hawks fan who cries when Titch gets 50 and the Hawks lose and people have the gall to say his possessions aren’t damaging.

                Yes, I wish we’d kept him but Cameron acts as though Sydney are the only team that lose players. His articles are getting progressively worse.

        • July 10th 2018 @ 10:30am
          Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:30am | ! Report

          I agree Peter, but I don’t think one should underplay the injury list they are facing either.

          Take out of the list of any other club you pick – 2 of your 3 key forward targets (Tippett and Reid – noting Tippo was gone before the season but is still on the list), a key defender that was an established part of the back 6 last season (Melican), a key organiser within the back 6/half back flanker and generally good user of the ball (Mills), No 1 Ruckman (Naismith), and now a veteran playing excellent footy still (McVeigh). Plus throw in two other key cogs in previous years (Hanners and Jack) who are really struggling. Take out equivalent players at any other club, and tell me which club wouldn’t probably be struggling in the same circumstance?

          I feel the broader questions should really lie around whether the Swans gameplan is good enough. I don’t think it is – or has been for a little while now. but Longmire does seem to struggle to adapt to timing changes. That may be as big an impediment to further progress than anything else.

          • Roar Guru

            July 10th 2018 @ 1:25am
            Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 1:25am | ! Report

            GWS, the Pies, Blues, Crows have all had equal or a worse run with injuries than the Swans Jim and Colllingwood and Carlton top the current injury ladder.

            • July 10th 2018 @ 2:16pm
              Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 2:16pm | ! Report

              And Collingwood are doing a fine job at managing it. Crows are barely still alive for finals, GWS are looking like also runs as well and no need to say anything about Carlton. Collingwood undoubtedly helped by a relatively kind draw in the wash out too. Your comment does not refute what I said at all.

        • Roar Guru

          July 10th 2018 @ 4:49pm
          Cat said | July 10th 2018 @ 4:49pm | ! Report

          I’m not convinced Swans had a whole lot of options. It may have come down to salary cap pressures. Only so many ‘stars’ to be fit in.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 1:37pm
        Peter warrington said | July 10th 2018 @ 1:37pm | ! Report

        Yes I think Heeney when he adds bulk will be like Caddy, a high flying forward who can pinch in the middle, at a pinch.

        time to trade for another 2-3 good 50-100 game midfielders, back in the kids in the key position slots while it gels.

    • July 10th 2018 @ 8:15am
      Aligee said | July 10th 2018 @ 8:15am | ! Report

      Parker, all hardness but lacking class except around goals

      What!!, you cant be serious with this comment ?.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 9:15am
        IAP said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:15am | ! Report

        Parker is classic Sydney – a sold B grader, but not the type to drag them over the line to win the premiership. Sydney have lots of B graders, probably more than most, but they lack top end talent.

        • July 11th 2018 @ 1:20pm
          number11andfineleg said | July 11th 2018 @ 1:20pm | ! Report

          Parker, B Grader? 2nd 2016 Brownlow Medal, ahead of Martin, Sloane, Gaff, Bont ……
          If that’s B Grade give us 22 of them.

          • July 12th 2018 @ 7:56am
            IAP said | July 12th 2018 @ 7:56am | ! Report

            Yep, B grade.

      • Roar Guru

        July 10th 2018 @ 9:18am
        JamesH said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:18am | ! Report

        I think Cam’s saying his disposal efficiency isn’t at a high level, which is probably fair. It’s not his strength.

      • Roar Guru

        July 10th 2018 @ 3:58pm
        Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 3:58pm | ! Report

        Hmmmm, I can say the same with your comment below Aligee.

        Aligee said | May 18th 2018 @ 8:55am | ! Report

        Collingwood has a few good wins every year, maybe they will have a couple more but ultimately they will be in the bottom half of the 8.

        Buckley needs to go, in fact he should already be gone.

        Eddie who has a bunch of handpicked YES men on the board needs to go as well, dictatorships rarely turn out well in the end.


        • July 10th 2018 @ 5:17pm
          Aligee said | July 10th 2018 @ 5:17pm | ! Report

          Maybe i was wrong about Collingwood this year, however i was not wrong about them in the preceding 3 where anyone else besides Buckley would have been escorted out the door.

          BTW the jury still out on Collingwood.

          The comment about Parker is just weird, if you have class around goals and are a good mark, get plenty of possessions like he does then you are a pretty good player, he would be snapped up by most other clubs.

          Whatsmore the Collingwood board is a bunch of yes ‘Eddie’ men, winning doesn’t change them.

          • Roar Guru

            July 10th 2018 @ 5:31pm
            Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 5:31pm | ! Report

            Thank goodness the pies board are yes men Aligee as Eddie is the smartest bloke going around and we don’t want any geriatrics getting in his way.

            • July 10th 2018 @ 8:02pm
              Aligee said | July 10th 2018 @ 8:02pm | ! Report

              When Collingwood hold their AGM’s at the beautiful old Collingwood Town Hall and play their AFLW games at Vic Park thereby helping locally Collingwood businesses i may jump on board again.

              • Roar Guru

                July 11th 2018 @ 7:55am
                Peter the Scribe said | July 11th 2018 @ 7:55am | ! Report

                Aligee you have no idea of Collingwood Council and their politics. If you want to talk about geriatrics getting in the way then go to a council meeting. Collingwood council are the suburbs biggest obstacle. They should make Eddie Mayor, he could do a better job working 3 hours a week on it.

              • July 11th 2018 @ 12:04pm
                Aligee said | July 11th 2018 @ 12:04pm | ! Report

                No, i have a fair idea, i do understand that the council is a waste of space, hopefully that will change, their stance on Australia day etc is just mind blowing.

                I would have thought however AFLW would be given a big leg up at Vic Park by the council, i am continually dumbfounded and saddened by the demise of local landmarks being torn down, Pubs converted into offices etc, before you know it the suburb will just be another bland nothing.

    • Roar Guru

      July 10th 2018 @ 9:16am
      Stirling Coates said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:16am | ! Report

      Tom Mitchell was a bitterly disappointing departure, but is a bullocking inside mid who wins the hard ball but doesn’t have a great deal of class on the outside the kind of player Sydney are missing at the moment? I’d say not.

      What Sydney are really missing is a classy outside mid – the role Dan Hannebery is currently struggling to fill.

      You raise some good points about the defenders being overworked, and the side not generating enough score – but let’s not forget the Swans were very close to taking the lead in the last quarter of both losses in the last fortnight.

      If they’d pulled it off we’d all be lauding their ability to win when the chips are down.

      • Roar Guru

        July 10th 2018 @ 9:35am
        Cat said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:35am | ! Report

        If we are going to play the game of ‘ifs’ it is only fair to include the other side of the ‘ifs’. If Sydney wasn’t extraordinarily accurate (11.1) in the first and Geelong extraordinarily inaccurate (8.23) in the second, we’d be talking about two 10 goal losses and the blowtorch would be cranked right up!

        That’s not even taking into account Buddy kicking 8.0 in the two games combined. Has Buddy ever been that accurate over back-to-back games?

      • July 10th 2018 @ 9:43am
        Kris said | July 10th 2018 @ 9:43am | ! Report

        If the Swans need class outside then the effective trade of Mitchell for Florent makes sense.

        • Roar Guru

          July 10th 2018 @ 10:41am
          Stirling Coates said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:41am | ! Report

          Oliver Florent is getting better with every game – he could be an absolute gun in the near future.

          • July 10th 2018 @ 10:46am
            Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:46am | ! Report

            That kid is cool, calm and very collected. His disposal a little hit and miss at the moment, but his decision making very good – he doesn’t turn the ball over for want of making poor decisions – just execution. Give him a season or two and he will be a very fine player indeed. The swans just need to find a young midfield bull now.

      • Roar Guru

        July 10th 2018 @ 10:20am
        Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:20am | ! Report

        Stirling which player in the comp is both “a bullocking inside mid who wins the hard ball” and “have (ing) a great deal of class on the outside” kind of player? If I look at the side I know really well we have Adams and Sier as inside players, Pendlebury, Sidebottom, Treloar and Phillips as outside type. That’s not to say they don’t do some inside work but true inside mids with great class on the outside? Who fits that bill really? IMO you need players burrowing into packs feeding it out to the class you don’t get it in one player and the Swans gave away the best inside mid in the game.

        • Roar Guru

          July 10th 2018 @ 10:40am
          Stirling Coates said | July 10th 2018 @ 10:40am | ! Report

          I didn’t say the Swans needed all that in one player, nor did I say there is a player out there who provides both. They already have bullocking inside mids in Josh Kennedy and Luke Parker – Tom Mitchell doesn’t provide what Sydney’s missing.

          They need a player who provides class on the outside. Dan Hannebery has been that man in the past, but he’s having a career-worst season.

          • Roar Guru

            July 10th 2018 @ 1:30am
            Peter the Scribe said | July 10th 2018 @ 1:30am | ! Report

            Fair enough Stirling, the Swans also sit 10th on the points for ladder, indicating a lack of scoring potential besides Buddy, linked to their chase for Darcy Moore. Moore is an interesting one. Does he stick with a club seemingly approaching a premiership window or move to a club potentially past theirs?

            • July 10th 2018 @ 2:25pm
              Jim said | July 10th 2018 @ 2:25pm | ! Report

              Lets see Collingwood turn up for more than half a season at a time before we suggest their Premiership Window is opening….

              In modern football, the concept is a dead duck anyway imho, because the best teams are consistently regenerating their lists, not just building for a single tilt.

        • July 10th 2018 @ 1:39pm
          Peter warrington said | July 10th 2018 @ 1:39pm | ! Report

          Martin and Cotchin. The latter has improved his kicking, off both legs, incredibly in the last 18 months.

      • July 10th 2018 @ 2:21pm
        Lroy said | July 10th 2018 @ 2:21pm | ! Report

        You can have Jetta back, for free!!

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