At 3-2 the Swans aren’t in a dire position. Think back to a year ago and the Swans started 1-3 and even though they went on to win 12 in a row, many of those wins early on were far from perfect. Notorious slow starters or are there genuinely some chinks in the armour? Premierships aren’t won in May and having the best home and away record doesn’t mean you’re automatically assured of a premiership? We finished 3rd in 2012 and 1st in 2014….remember what happened in those two years?
Yesterday’s game was frustrating – a 4 point loss to the Western Bulldogs. The clean silky ball movement wasn’t there (albeit it was pretty wet) but good forward pressure by the Bulldogs led to many mistakes by the Sydney back line. The mid-field and forward line were good but poor decision making, fumbles and turnovers in the back half made clean position hard to get; and allowed for some costly goals to the Bulldogs. To a certain extent Malceski and his reliable kicking and rebounds from the back half have been missed.
Goodes kicked a few goals but looked slow in the wet. You could see the effort but I have to admit, fathertime is catching up to him and the opposition are taking advantage of it. Playing in the forward line the pressure just isn’t there when the opposition have the ball which makes it easy for opponents to get it out of their danger zone. It’s hard to see him keeping his place. Hannebery was magnificent, Parker and Kennedy were solid, and Buddy, well… he was just being held all day. If the Swans had of kicked straight, we may have snatched it, especially Tippet’s set shot that hit the post! However, the Swans didn’t deserve to win it yesterday and that near perfect game against Port from round 2 seems like a distant memory.
I think John Longmire might need to change things around a bit. We need a solid reliable kick in the back half and a solid conducter. Who better than Jarrad McVeigh? This will add some stability to the back half and allow a spot for Tim Mitchell in the mid field. I also think for next weeks game Goodes, Towers and Cunningham need to go with Reid, McGlynn and Heeney to come back in.
Sitting in the stands yesterday it was great to see just how passionate the Swans supporters are. It’s still early in the season and there will be highs and lows. Hopefully the boys can learn from this and play a better game at the MCG V Demons next week. And yes, wet weather footy is just something that the Swans are not very good at.