Tragic
Tipping Comp 2021
Yeah i was really disappointed we didn't get into the grind on Friday night. The writing was on the wall when we last played the Storm. I think we were a bit lucky to lead that game with the Saab intercept try. Melbourne was clearly winning the arm wrestle and i was hoping Des would address this going into the Finals game. Instead it felt like he doubled down on the attack from your own line playbook.

Maybe he did have that plan to be in the grind? Like the old Mike Tyson boxing saying goes, "everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face". And boy did we get smashed hard in the head. We were so rattled and couldn't get off the canvas until 18-6 and then Tom's error that sealed our fate.

I'll keep repeating this..but until we can match the middle and slow the play the ball down like the Storm do we will be extremely lucky to beat them. I saw stretches of it, but we dont do it for long enough and often the slow the play the ball becomes Jake just holding down too long and the ref has no choice other than to blow a penalty. We need to be more disciplined, smarter and practice this stuff until we can match the Storm in these areas. WE have enough strike power to score the points to beat them. but that becomes a moot point without winning the grind.
I agree with you. Having strike is of no significance if you didn't earnt the right to use it.
 
Reserve Grader
As bad as we were, it just seems that we get smothered by the storm and frustration creeps in, immaturity shows that they can not overcome adversity.
The storm and doesntmatta are allowed to lie in the ruck, third man in after tackle, crocodile rollover etc. They gain at least 2 seconds per tackle, 10 seconds per set.
I thought this had been rubbed out of the game - however it has reared its head over the last month. We know its cheating, however they are still getting away with it. If we applied any of the above - would we get the rub of the green?? If we kicked a ball that had hit the ground 1st, would we be allowed a try??
We can beat the roosters and souths if we turn up, however to beat the storm we have to be another 20% better than them to overcome the uneven playing field, like in 2008
 
Bencher
Obviously Bennett is a special coach but I think last night's match and our performance on Friday night really exposes the flaws in Manly's game plan this season. As long as I have watched RL, defence wins big matches....moments win big matches...the grind wins big matches (yes, even the 40-0 GF was 8-0 at halftime).

I just don't see how our razzle dazzle football is ever going to be the catalyst for success in big games. It's entertaining but it's not effective when defences tighten up and the refs put the whistle away. There is enough natural talent and ability in our squad that an attack focused mentality is completely unnecessary. You'll jag points with the likes of Tom and DCE in the team. We just need the team to get us into the rhythm of the game and win some rucks and get some field position off the back of strong defence and line speed. The points will just come.

I fear, until our approach to the game changes and we trust our pack to take on the teams in the middle and improve our completion rates, we haven't got much hope against top shelf sides in big games. You're just not going to blow them off the park with shifts to the edges.
You could see how much influence adam reynolds kicking game had on souths once **** got real. Respite, control, belief
Forwards love it. If we must keep asking what our forwards can do , we need to consider what can be done for the forwards
 
First Grader
Every player in the the storm pack ran as hard as they could into our defence on Friday night compared to our jogging up half hearted efforts at times

They play their attack and defence at 100 miles an hour and are so fit and strong compared to our players

They are on another level and now that the riff got beaten and look so tired I cannot see any team beating them for the premiership this year
 
Snake's Alive!
Melbourne was clearly winning the arm wrestle and i was hoping Des would address this going into the Finals game. Instead it felt like he doubled down on the attack from your own line playbook.
This!

Sounds like you and I watched the same game earlier in the year. I remember commenting that Melbourne were well on top and it looked like we were hanging on for most of the night. Yet, many posters disagreed and thought it looked like we had them and just dropped a few costly balls. Turns out, come the finals, it was the same game, just amplified. Melbourne winning the arm wrestle more easily and Manly dropping even more ball.
 
First Grader
Premium Member
Agree with the thread and just my take overall -

1 - High intensity and energy
2 - Defence - Line speed, communication and control tempo
3 - Tough direct attacking footy in numbers - offloads without the desperation
4 - Add some special play's backend of halves after winning the tempo and doing the ugly stuff first.

To call it straight up...the BEST we looked on Friday was when Walker came on and played directly through that ruck and Toms best carry of the night a V run behind the ruck to get us on the front foot - there's the blueprint
 
Snake's Alive!
It's pretty clear that the physical contest in both games against Melbourne were won by Melbourne. It's not a simple case of completion rates (though it helps to complete). Most contact when we have the ball is us getting hammered and struggling for yards and when Melbourne have the ball, it's us hanging on for dear life the slow the ruck down.

We are clearly physically inferior...is that about a lack of intensity or conditioning? I don't know.
 
Reserve Grader
I agree with you. Having strike is of no significance if you didn't earnt the right to use it.
Sadly we have a pack with no leader - Marty was supppsed to be that man but sadly he has not responded. There is no mongrel in our forwards (except Keppie maybe and he has not been around in the last month). Suggest we start with the following forward pack to get into a arm wrestle for first 20 -
Marty/Croker/Paseka
Keppie/Aloia
Jake
and then bring on Oka and Schuster
once the game opens up.
 
Reserve Grader
This!

Sounds like you and I watched the same game earlier in the year. I remember commenting that Melbourne were well on top and it looked like we were hanging on for most of the night. Yet, many posters disagreed and thought it looked like we had them and just dropped a few costly balls. Turns out, come the finals, it was the same game, just amplified. Melbourne winning the arm wrestle more easily and Manly dropping even more ball.
This!

Sounds like you and I watched the same game earlier in the year. I remember commenting that Melbourne were well on top and it looked like we were hanging on for most of the night. Yet, many posters disagreed and thought it looked like we had them and just dropped a few costly balls. Turns out, come the finals, it was the same game, just amplified. Melbourne winning the arm wrestle more easily and Manly dropping even more ball.
Yep we know that you win this game by building pressure, over 80 minutes. You build pressure by winning the ruck, defending well and completing sets. Over and over again.

Melbourne dont need to score amazing tries to win games. They win games by absolutely nailing the basics.

And Manly are way off the pace. We haven't really respected the ball all year consistently and have been bailed out by some attacking genius. That worked against lesser teams..but spoiler alert..it doesn't against the best.

Anyway ive beaten this drum enough the last few days.
 
Reserve Grader
Aside from obviously improving our completion rate, we need to use our bench better - playing with only 15 for most of the game is not going to work in big finals games where it becomes more of a grind and winning the forward battle is more important. We saw the result of this on Friday where Melbourne had a much better balance in their pack and NAS/Kamikamica came on and continued the platform for them.

I would 100% be starting Paseka over Marty and be bringing Walker off the bench for Jake rather than one of the front rowers. Keppie also needs to come on earlier and play more minutes, I think back to the first Parra game this year and he in particular took the challenge against their pack and absolutely ripped.
 
Reserve Grader
Sadly we have a pack with no leader - Marty was supppsed to be that man but sadly he has not responded. There is no mongrel in our forwards (except Keppie maybe and he has not been around in the last month). Suggest we start with the following forward pack to get into a arm wrestle for first 20 -
Marty/Croker/Paseka
Keppie/Aloia
Jake
and then bring on Oka and Schuster
once the game opens up.
I like this thinking. At a minimum i think Schu should start on the bench.
 
Snake's Alive!
Aside from obviously improving our completion rate, we need to use our bench better - playing with only 15 for most of the game is not going to work in big finals games where it becomes more of a grind and winning the forward battle is more important. We saw the result of this on Friday where Melbourne had a much better balance in their pack and NAS/Kamikamica came on and continued the platform for them.

I would 100% be starting Paseka over Marty and be bringing Walker off the bench for Jake rather than one of the front rowers. Keppie also needs to come on earlier and play more minutes, I think back to the first Parra game this year and he in particular took the challenge against their pack and absolutely ripped.
Keppie did have a good game against the Eels that day but he's done very little since. He lacks leg speed to be damaging with the ball. Good solid defender but a bench prop IMO. I know you are not suggesting he start, but I don't know that bigger minutes from him is the answer.
 
True Supporter
Staff member
Administrator
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
There's a lot of things we need to improve. All of which are the cornerstones of quality finals standard football

  • Kicking game - 40/20's are great, but do we need to be going for them so often ?? How about we have a controlled long kicking game that involves finding the grass and a good kick chase. Play the field position game, control the tempo of the game.
  • Line speed in defence - get up and meet them at the ad line. It's so simple but so critical.
  • Dominate the ruck - win the battle in the middle and everything else flows from that more easily. Got to get the roll through middle so we can use our strike power out wide.
  • Completions - just hang onto the ball and cut the errors. Possession, possession, possession.

I'm not sure we have that extra level of intensity needed for finals football. Need to make a statement against Roosters because you know their forward pack is going to bring it. Be interested to see what the composure level is this week and how we control the game (or does it control us ? ). Need the experienced guys to stand up and lead - that was lacking last week.
 
The Incomparable Immortal Bob Fulton
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
Des knows defence is our weakness, that's why guys like Harper and Parker are getting start cos he knows we are already weak in this area. Its just laziness, defence is an attitude thing and we have too many forwards that don't like the hard dirty stuff.
There are many weaknesses in a team to improve and that includes attack as well as defence

Because when Tom does not fire our Parkers and Harpers fire blanks

Last week when Tom was contained we could not score of just two kicks and Parker and Harper were dormant and ineffective in creating any scoring opportunities .

All our players should be competent in both attack and defence

Other wise we will remain a one man team

Shut down Tommy and we shut down Manly
 
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Obviously Bennett is a special coach but I think last night's match and our performance on Friday night really exposes the flaws in Manly's game plan this season. As long as I have watched RL, defence wins big matches....moments win big matches...the grind wins big matches (yes, even the 40-0 GF was 8-0 at halftime).

I just don't see how our razzle dazzle football is ever going to be the catalyst for success in big games. It's entertaining but it's not effective when defences tighten up and the refs put the whistle away. There is enough natural talent and ability in our squad that an attack focused mentality is completely unnecessary. You'll jag points with the likes of Tom and DCE in the team. We just need the team to get us into the rhythm of the game and win some rucks and get some field position off the back of strong defence and line speed. The points will just come.

I fear, until our approach to the game changes and we trust our pack to take on the teams in the middle and improve our completion rates, we haven't got much hope against top shelf sides in big games. You're just not going to blow them off the park with shifts to the edges.
Our style of play has half a chance of working on dry fast decks where we can zip the ball around with confidence and plenty of player movement off the ball with footwork.

Whenever it is a slow wet track or dewy and slippery Manly are exposed because we don't play direct and straight enough through the middle to compete with the grind or offer much quality support to the lead runner to put the defence in two minds.

Manly's go forward and defence works off the back of crisp early lateral ball movement to work the oppositions defence over so they become more fatigued during their go forward sets leading to less effective go forward or more predictable sets to defend against.

As i mentioned prior to the Melb game, if Manly are in the grind it is worrying signs that we are not being effective, we will eventually fatigue and lose the grind unless Manly can artificially induce stoppages of play to try and regain momentum through a sharp explosive 5min spell.(much harder with less scrums to do so)

Our fitness levels(partly due to our size) is not as good as Melb and Penrith so we need points and a dry track to defeat such teams.
 
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shuu
start strong early, like a finals game. Haven't started well enough since the eels game, to be fair a lot of things have changed since the eels game. Our structure, side to side footy, discipline and defence, but the storm game was a wake-up call.

Because against Melbourne we didn't play much different to what we played like against raiders, bulldogs and cowboys, it's just we got met with a much stronger opposition who exposed us for it. Hope we go back to that pre raiders footy, fix ourselves up.
 
Bencher
Sadly we have a pack with no leader - Marty was supppsed to be that man but sadly he has not responded. There is no mongrel in our forwards (except Keppie maybe and he has not been around in the last month). Suggest we start with the following forward pack to get into a arm wrestle for first 20 -
Marty/Croker/Paseka
Keppie/Aloia
Jake
and then bring on Oka and Schuster
once the game opens up.
Big unit to start but what do we do after 20-25 minutes? We would then effectively have a forward pack of

The Shoe, Croker, Guaca,
Walker, Lawton
Jake
 
Bencher
There's a lot of things we need to improve. All of which are the cornerstones of quality finals standard football

  • Kicking game - 40/20's are great, but do we need to be going for them so often ?? How about we have a controlled long kicking game that involves finding the grass and a good kick chase. Play the field position game, control the tempo of the game.
  • Line speed in defence - get up and meet them at the ad line. It's so simple but so critical.
  • Dominate the ruck - win the battle in the middle and everything else flows from that more easily. Got to get the roll through middle so we can use our strike power out wide.
  • Completions - just hang onto the ball and cut the errors. Possession, possession, possession.

I'm not sure we have that extra level of intensity needed for finals football. Need to make a statement against Roosters because you know their forward pack is going to bring it. Be interested to see what the composure level is this week and how we control the game (or does it control us ? ). Need the experienced guys to stand up and lead - that was lacking last week.
Have been thinking for a long time that we are not the smartest footy team going around. Things have improved a little with Foz, but we just don't seem to play the percentages. Completions and field position are 'king' in today's game.
 
Big unit to start but what do we do after 20-25 minutes? We would then effectively have a forward pack of

The Shoe, Croker, Guaca,
Walker, Lawton
Jake
For me it's Aoli , Tent, Kelpie, Guac and Jake to start, prop rotation is Marty and Slippers around 20 minutes, Lawton on for Guac after 30 minutes. Aoli for slippers around 50 minutes or so then Tent and Guac for Marty And Lawton when appropriate.
2 interchanges left, obviously no Walker and Lawton available if Frog goes down.
Solid as we will get.
 

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