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Melbourne Football Club

VFL player review: round five

Harmesy was fantastic on the weekend. I thought his effort and ability to show strong effort over four quarters meant he was clearly one of our best players
Justin Plapp

CASEY coach Justin Plapp reviews the Melbourne-listed players who played in the VFL

2017 Peter Jackson VFL
Sunday, May 14, 2pm
Northern Blues 14.14 (98) d Casey Demons 6.7 (43)
Preston City Oval

From the coach …

“Our game on the weekend was really disappointing. In my three years at the club, it was performance that at times I felt a bit embarrassed about. We’re all accountable as coaches and players, but we’re certainly not playing the football we’re capable of doing. We showed patches, where we looked like we were in control of the game, but it wasn’t for long enough. We had a couple of key stats that were damning and the players have got to respond as a club. It’s not the sort of performance we’ve become known for – we were quite easy to play against on the weekend, which was really disappointing. We were also disappointed by the fact that we drew inspiration from the Melbourne team and its victory against Adelaide – they found a way to win in a hostile environment and we didn’t live up to it on the day.” – Justin Plapp 

Angus Brayshaw: He only lasted two minutes into the game. He received another head knock and took no further part in the game, which was disappointing.

James Harmes: He had 41 disposals, including 20 contested possessions, seven clearances and five inside 50s. Harmesy was fantastic on the weekend. I thought his effort and ability to show strong effort over four quarters meant he was clearly one of our best players. Although there are some areas of his game we’re still working on, he certainly dug in and was able to win a lot of his own ball. He also gave us some drive throughout the middle of the ground. Full credit to him on a challenging day.

Liam Hulett: Liam had five possessions, two rebound 50s and four tackles. He’s a player we’re really challenging at the moment to get four consistent quarters out of. There are some inconsistencies in his game at the moment, although he’s a young, developing player. He showed some positive signs around his aerial contest, but also some inconsistencies.

Dion Johnstone: He had eight possessions and one tackle. Dion relied on strong contests from our bigger players, and he didn’t get a lot of reward for effort. But the challenge for him is that he has to have a greater output, when he’s not touching the ball.

Declan Keilty: He had nine disposals, nine hit outs, four clearances and two tackles. Declan, like a lot of our key position players on the day, was unable to really influence the ball in the air, which was disappointing. He was able to give Mitch King a chop-out in the ruck and competed manfully, but once again, for one of our bigger players to not mark the ball on the day was disappointing for our team.

Ben Kennedy: Ben had 19 disposals, including 15 contested possessions, and had four clearances. It was a tough day for Benny and a lot of our smaller forwards. We were continually out marked and at times, it was really unpredictable for our players to position themselves. I thought Benny tried really hard, but through our inability to contest and bring the ball to ground, it made our ground level ball players non-existent.

Jay Kennedy-Harris: He had 24 disposals, three clearances and three inside 50s. He also kicked a goal. After coming back from the AFL, it was a pretty slow start for Jay. He was challenged quite strongly at three quarter-time about his output and he was able to respond really well. He really lifted the intensity and his second half was a highlight. Jay covered the ground and was able to play the type of footy we know he can play. He was another player that we needed more out of on the day.

Mitch King: Mitch had five disposals, 17 hit outs and two tackles. Kingy showed some really good signs the previous week, but he was comprehensively beaten in the ruck. The opposition clearly dominated that area of the ground, so we’re challenging Kingy to be more of a presence around the ground, and to have more of an influence. When he’s not in the ruck or winning taps, we want him to be in positions where he can impact and we’re working with him on that. He’s a developing player, but we needed more from him on the day.

Alex Neal-Bullen: Alex had 34 disposals, six clearances, eight inside 50s and he kicked a goal. I thought Alex’s game was very positive. He was able to win clearances and take us forward on a lot of occasions. Alex was a player who continued to try over the four quarters and he could walk off the ground with his head held high. He played out the game with a bit of self-pride around what he did.

Billy Stretch: Billy had 20 possessions, two clearances, three inside 50s and three tackles. It was a better performance from Billy. His running ability was really prevalent on the weekend, as was his ability to take us forward. He used his legs and really stood out. His ability to play his role for the team and do the team things was something that stood out. He was another who could walk off the ground and say he did his bit.

Jack Trengove: Jack had 25 disposals, including 14 contested possessions, plus four rebound 50s and five tackles. It was yet another trademark game for Jack. He tried hard and didn’t have too many mates with him on the day. He used the ball quite well and was able to give us some good mid-forward connections, which set-up scoring opportunities. Once again, he continues to impress with his leadership and strong direction of the group.

2017 AFL Victoria Development League
Sunday, May 14, 11am
Northern Blues 10.11 (71) d Casey Demons 7.12 (54)
Preston City Oval

Lochie Filipovic: He had eight possessions, two marks, six tackles and 32 hit outs. His performance at development level was very strong. He’s really built up over the past two to three weeks, and continues to improve. Lochie’s really putting himself in contention to play senior VFL football very soon. For a ruckman to have six tackles is very good and his follow-up work is a real highlight. He plays with a lot of intensity and I really liked what I saw on the weekend. He’s heading in the right direction.