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Goodwin moves on from cancelled camp  

Matt Burgan  December 22, 2017 5:55 PM

Pre-season Review: Simon Goodwin We chat with Simon Goodwin as he reflects on Melbourne's 2018 pre-season.

COACH Simon Goodwin says the cancellation of Melbourne’s pre-Christmas camp was a “non-issue” and one part of a bigger picture.

Goodwin acknowledged it had been a spoken about at length among the football public, but said the decision not to proceed with it was one change in the club’s pre-season program.

“The camp’s been a big talking point, but for us as a footy club, it’s a very small piece in a much bigger puzzle,” he told melbournefc.com.au.

“As a club, we’re really committed to building hard-working, competitive, resilient, humble footballers and people. We’ll build programs around what that looks like and we do that on a daily basis – in how we train, how we communicate and what we do within our environment. That’s an ongoing process and the camp was really just a small piece in a much bigger puzzle.

“We build programs together, we talk to our players and we listen to our players and [the camp] being cancelled, really, for us, is a non-issue. We’re still really committed, and it’s not going to affect how we go about our business or how we play this season.

“It was just a part of our program that was a part of building what we want to create. But we’ll find ways to do that in a whole range of different areas.”

In assessing the first part of pre-season, Goodwin said he had been “really impressed with the players”.

“The way they’ve come back and their attitude towards their training, both out on the football field, but also in their environment and the way they’re going about their weights, and a whole range of different things that we’re doing –

I’ve been really impressed with that,” he said.

“The quality of the training has been exceptional, so you can see some enormous growth coming out of the group.”

Although the squad has dispersed for the Christmas/New Year period, Goodwin said the players still had plenty to achieve away from the club.  

“We don’t really try and talk about it as a break – we talk about it as building on our program away from the footy club,” he said.

“It is a slightly longer period this year – there are 18 days for the players that’ll be away. It gives them a chance to freshen up mentally, but also build their programs away from the footy club.

“They’ll go away and spend some time with family and friends, and enjoy Christmas, but come back on the 8th of January ready to go.”

Goodwin said the team was set to return to the Sunshine Coast for its post-Christmas pre-season camp in late January/early February.

“It’s an exciting camp. Maroochydore is a real football-based camp and it’s a real chance to really get our game style in check for season 2018,” he said.

“Really, [we] pick up our footy program and take it up to an environment which is different, it’s unique and it’s a chance to really build that togetherness with the group, along with our game style.”

Goodwin said co-captain Jack Viney (foot) and leader Tom McDonald (who had post-season surgery on both ankles) were making progress.

“Jack’s been a little bit slow and has been conservative with his foot, making sure that’s right.

“He’s starting to run now and he’ll really build up through January and get a really good block of training, leading into the season, so we’re really confident with where he’s at.

“Tom McDonald’s pretty much joined full training already. We’ve had some great progression with those guys and we’re looking forward to them having really good seasons.”