The Roar
The Roar

Stirling Coates

Editor

Joined March 2012

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Stirling Coates started out as an AFL crowd contributor, and is now one of The Roar's editors.

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I reckon Geelong’s bad finals record is a bit overblown. Every preliminary finalist they’ve lost to since 2011 either won the minor premiership or the premiership itself. Collingwood was the first team to beat them in a qualifying final but not reach the decider since North Melbourne in 1997.

I reckon they’ve been a very, very, very good – but not great – team for most of the decade and they’ve simply come up against better opposition. This year and last they’ve been good enough to win it so, unless they go out in straight sets, he should get another crack next season.

One question mark for each finalist ahead of Week 1

Love the decisiveness. I’ll check back in on Monday.

One question mark for each finalist ahead of Week 1

1. Start of a legitimate window, but there will be teething problems given the number of crucial players over 30.
2. OzLotto commercial huge.
3. No.
4. No, they’ll win in 2021 and then fall away.
5. Need to develop the killer instinct in some way.
6. I’m more worried about them opening up the chequebook again and doing a Brisbane 2010.
7. An older head in the midfield.
8. Yes.

One question mark for each finalist ahead of Week 1

Absolutely right about them butchering it by publicly revealing he’s finished at the club. In a year where Jeremy Cameron and Joe Daniher are on the market, they’ve moved their potential returns back one round in the draft.

Trading Ben Brown could make or break Rhyce Shaw's coaching career

I don’t drool all over Martin at all – I’ve got him as a forward rather than a midfielder anyway so it’s not like he’s taken Boak’s spot in the 18.

Probably a fair point to be made about Boak being centre over Dangerfield though.

The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions: All Australian team

Only the AFL could make a home team choosing where to play their home final controversial.

AFL reveals first week of finals fixture; who plays who, where and when

Jane Seymour! The very best.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

Lazenby’s film is one of the very best and Connery couldn’t have pulled off the emotional weight needed to make it work, but I’m still on the fence as to whether he could have made it work more than once.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

Worst Bond girl for mine is Mary Goodnight from The Man with the Golden Gun. They’ve got everything wrapped up by lunchtime if not for her incompetence.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

Going through them all lately so I’ll get there eventually.

Saw Timothy Dalton’s two films over the last couple of nights and really liked them. Shame he didn’t get a proper run.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

Haven’t seen Quantum of Solace since it came out in cinemas so I can’t remember much. Keen to see it again soon.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

Pretty much my exact view on Thursday night footy too.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

I don’t think I explained myself with the floating fixture well enough.

I don’t want clubs’ opponents to be undecided, I just want the timeslot within each round to be flexible for the last five weeks.

Your opponents will be locked in before the season starts as normal, but (for example) Round 18-23’s matches can get moved from Saturday twilight to Friday night etc.

Which of this year's quirks and oddities should the AFL keep?

He took over a team that finished in the bottom four in 2015 after badly overestimating their list and the ‘4 S strategy’ has successfully plugged gaping holes left by crucial retirements (Watson, Kelly) and extended injury issues (Daniher).

Like I said in the article, the 4 S strategy was not designed to get them over the line, it was to ensure they stayed competitive after losing such crucial pieces.

I see no reason why, with a full year of Smith, Shiel and Heppell and another preseason under the belts of some of their youngsters, they can’t finish 5th-8th next season.

With the end in sight, what will Worsfold's Essendon legacy be?

Bit unfair to look at the whole decade given he only took over in the second half of it.

As I said in the article, they did overestimate their list at the end of 2014, but he wasn’t involved then.

It’s also a bit arbitrary to criticise them for not having a pick inside 30 for three years; they had picks 5, 6 and 29 in 2015 as well as 1 and 22 in 2016 (the first two drafts of Worsfold’s reign) and got all five selections right.

Since then, they’ve spent 9 (2018), 11 and 30 (2017) on Dylan Shiel, Devon Smith and Jake Stringer – would they be more competitive today if they’d taken Jye Caldwell, Aiden Bonar and Tom de Koning instead? No chance.

With the end in sight, what will Worsfold's Essendon legacy be?

The only extended handover I’ve seen work has been Paul Roos to John Longmire.

With the end in sight, what will Worsfold's Essendon legacy be?

31,717.

Their two highest years are 2004 (33,619) and 2005 (33,267) – the support is there, it just tends to wane a bit after a 15-year period with one finals appearance.

Six talking points from AFL Rounds 15 and 16

Brisbane Bears 1988 – 12,782 per game
Brisbane Bears 1990 – 8887 per game
Brisbane Lions 1998 – 16,675 per game
Brisbane Lions 2019 – 24,741 per game

So, yes.

Six talking points from AFL Rounds 15 and 16

Hawthorn Hawks, Adelaide Crows and the Carrara Curators all desperate for the year to finish.

The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions: Rounds 15 and 16

I think they said at the start of the season it’d be 16 minutes all the way.

The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions: Rounds 15 and 16

Wasn’t aware I was shooting any messenger?

And, no, I don’t work for the AFL.

Umpiring is broken in the AFL. Why can't we talk about it?

Best umpires officiate them and, in recent years, they keep the same trio together as much as possible throughout the finals series. That would surely lead to better consistency as well.

Umpiring is broken in the AFL. Why can't we talk about it?

I think the umpires do a much better job than we give them credit for. I’ve said it a few times before, but the problem is most AFL commentators don’t know the rules and haven’t really made the effort to properly learn them.

The number of times I hear them umming and ahhing over a decision that’s very clear cut frustrates me to no end.

Umpiring is broken in the AFL. Why can't we talk about it?

Very hard to actually know who’s responsible for what at Essendon right now, and I think the fans are a bit too tempted to attribute all the good to Rutten and all the bad to Worsfold.

They’ve got the cattle to be better than they are, so I’d like to see how a full year under ‘Truck’ goes.

The early report card on 2020's new coaches

C+ might end up being the grade when all is said and done, just seemed a bit premature to go that low given finals are still on the cards.

The early report card on 2020's new coaches