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AFL coaching ladder: Rounds 12 to 18, 2019

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Roar Guru
22nd July, 2019
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Rounds 12 to 18 have put yet more AFL coaches under the microscope.

David Teague was announced as interim coach of Carlton from Round 12 until the end of the 2019 AFL season, taking over as from the sacked Brendon Bolton.

Allan Richardson resigned as St Kilda coach after his side’s Round 17 loss to Geelong, therefore I have judged him up until Round 17 and haven’t analysed the coaching performance of St Kilda’s caretaker coach, Brett Ratten, as he’s coached just one game.

This season there has seen a total of three interim coaches appointed, and all have been successful. Teague was ranked first in the six-round period I have analysed, while Rhyce Shaw is third on the ladder. Ratten has started well, winning his first match, and it will be interesting to see how Ratten goes in the last five games of the season.

1. David Teague (Carlton Blues)
Carlton has won four of the six games. There are plenty of positives to speak of. It’s now clear that the Carlton list has plenty of talent in it. The only criticism of Teague is that the side have generally started slowly during his tenure thus far. The only two losses thye’ve suffered were by under a goal, which shows why Teague deserves the 2020 contract.

2. Chris Fagan (Brisbane Lions)
Brisbane has won five of six games, but they did lose to Carlton in Round 12. The Lions have managed to kick over 100 points on two occasions. It’s just about certain they’ll play finals now, and they deserve to. Brisbane played an exciting brand of footy in this lot of six games, and though their wins were by at least two goals, it was the manner of which they played that was impressive.


(AAP Image/Dave Hunt)

3. Rhyce Shaw (North Melbourne Kangaroos)
North Melbourne may have won three games of the six, but they were extremely unlucky to lose in Round 17 and 18 to Essendon and Brisbane respectively. Remarkable is that they’ve been playing an outstanding brand of footy. Were it not for a decision going against them in their match against Brisbane, they may well have won, which could’ve been enough to see the Kangaroos play finals. It doesn’t take away from how good a coach that Rhyce Shaw had been in the six games.

4. Luke Beveridge (Western Bulldogs)
The Western Bulldogs have won three of six, and they managed to beat Geelong and almost beat Collingwood. Even when the Bulldogs were outplayed by the resurgent St Kilda team under interim coach Brett Ratten, they fought their way back into the contest to be extremely competitive. They play an attractive style of footy and Beveridge deserves to be in the top four on the coaching ladder.


5. Alastair Clarkson (Hawthorn Hawks)
Hawthorn have had mixed performances. They managed to win in Rounds 16, 17 and 18, and the three losses they suffered were narrow. The Hawks managed to beat Collingwood in Round 16 and Geelong in Round 18, and they nearly beat the West Coast Eagles in Round 15. They played good footy in their six games, with Clarkson proving that the Hawthorn list is in good shape for next year and beyond.

6. John Worsfold (Essendon Bombers)
Essendon suffered just one loss from six games, which was away to the West Coast Eagles. They have played good footy and Worsfold has just about silenced the doubters. They may have not kicked over 100 points, but it’s tough to fault the game style of Woosha in their last six games.

John Worsfold

(Mark Metcalfe/AFL Media/Getty Images)

7. Damien Hardwick (Richmond Tigers)
Richmond have had their fair share of injuries, with the likes of Alex Rance and Jack Riewoldt ruled out, but they still won four out of the six games. It now appears as if Richmond will play finals this season and may even finish in the top four. The Tigers have played a good brand of footy and Hardwick deserves his spot in the top eight. Richmond beat St Kilda and Gold Coast, as they should have done on paper, but they didn’t play well against Geelong in Round 12 and were beaten by Adelaide in Round 13.

7. Adam Simpson (West Coast Eagles)
West Coast won four of six games, losing to Sydney in Round 12 and Collingwood at home in Round 17. The Eagles were extremely impressive in the derby in Round 16. Adam Simpson was outcoached by John Longmire in Round 12, which shows that Simpson has some room for improvement and they lost to Collingwood in Round 17 at Optus Stadium.

9. Chris Scott (Geelong Cats)
Geelong were only victorious in three of the six games. Chris Scott was outcoached against Port Adelaide and Western Bulldogs as well as against Hawthorn. The three wins Geelong had were comfortable from a scoreboard perspective, so that is a positive, but in comparison to the rest of the season Geelong weren’t as well-coached in the last six rounds.

Chris Scott

(James Elsby/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

10. Leon Cameron (Greater Western Sydney)
Greater West Sydney won just two of the six games. They were shocking. They weren’t beaten heavily in any of their losses despite several injuries and they won against two good teams in North Melbourne and Collingwood. In Round 18 they were extremely impressive as Leon Cameron completely outcoached Nathan Buckley.


11. Don Pyke (Adelaide Crows)
Two of their losses were to Geelong and Port Adelaide. They managed to defeat Greater Western Sydney and Richmond, who sit in the top eight. They lost in an embarrassing manner to Port Adelaide, which was unacceptable. In Round 18 against Essendon they gave up a fairly substantial lead to lose a game they should have won.

12. John Longmire (Sydney Swans)
Sydney may have won three of the six games, but they lost to Carlton and Fremantle as well as Essendon. The highlight for Sydney was when they beat the West Coast Eagles comprehensively. In all three of their losses they kicked under ten gaols, which is unacceptable, with their kicking not up to AFL standard due to the fact they kicked more behinds than goals in their three losses.

13. Simon Goodwin (Melbourne Demons)
Melbourne won only two of their six matches, with their two wins coming against Fremantle and Carlton. The way in which Melbourne played has not been acceptable, because they looked disjointed and it was difficult to distinguish what their game plan was. The way in which Angus Brayshaw has been playing is puzzling, as it’s difficult to see what role Goodwin wants him to play – he’s gone from finishing third in the Brownlow last year to playing poorly.

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14. Ross Lyon (Fremantle Dockers)
Fremantle beat Port Adelaide and Sydney but lost their four other games. The fact they lost the derby comprehensively means the Dockers should consider a change of coach; there has even been a petition to get rid of Ross Lyon, and rightly so. Apart from having a mediocre record in his last six games, Lyon has coached Fremantle extremely poorly, as they kicked eight goals or less on three occasions.

15. Ken Hinkley (Port Adelaide Power)
Port Adelaide may have beaten Geelong and Adelaide, but they were uncompetitive in Round 17 and 18, where the manner in which they played wasn’t up to standard. It appeared as if there wasn’t an adequate game plan put in place by Hinkley. The players clearly weren’t responding in the way he wanted them to play, which made the two wins that they had during this period almost irrelevant.

16. Nathan Buckley (Collingwood Magpies)
It was a mixture of good and bad performances from Collingwood, but on the whole it was extremely disappointing. They managed to beat West Coast at Optus Stadium, but they lost to North Melbourne, Hawthorn and a depleted Greater Western Sydney and were fortunate to beat the Western Bulldogs. Nathan Buckley was thoroughly outplayed in Round 15 against North Melbourne and Round 18 against Greater Western Sydney.

17. Allan Richardson (St Kilda Saints)
The only win for Allan Richardson came in Round 13 when they beat the Gold Coast Suns. Despite resigning from his job, as he was unlikely to be coaching next year. St Kilda nearly beat Geelong in Richardson’s last game in charge. Unfortunately the five games Richardson coached during this period weren’t up to standard.

18. Stuart Dew (Gold Coast Suns)
Gold Coast were completely uncompetitive in Round 16 against Richmond and in Round 17 aainst Adelaide. The Suns lost all six games, and Stuart Dew can instil belief and morale into the group, but at the end of the day if you are uncompetitive, losing games by nearly a 100, it becomes irrelevant.