There’s nothing like a good, unbiased preview of a huge game…
… unless it is a completely biased preview with two opposing views butting heads. We’re all for a bit of innovation at The Mongrel, and so we invited two of our more vocal community members to jump online and have a “brief exchange of ideas” about the upcoming Richmond v Collingwood game.
It went as you’d expect, and some heavy editing was required to make it safe for your consumption.
HBMeyers – Welcome fellas. Like a good boxing match, let’s keep all shots above the waist and may the best team win tomorrow.
Richie Stanley – That team is the Tigers, mate. Might as well just state it now and finish the review.
Ricky Spooner – Idiot Richmond supporters. You’re celebrating back-to-back flags already and there’s a long way to go.
Richie Stanley – Four weeks til the finals. Four wins til the finals. You guys can still get there if you try real hard but let’s be honest; you’re playing for second place this season.
Ricky Spooner – It only takes one bad game in the finals, mate. You should know. Prior to last year every game you played in the finals was a bad one for years.
HBMeyers – Well, this has started brilliantly. I’ll ask a question, and you guys hit me with your views on it.
WILL THE ABSENCE OF JORDAN DE GOEY HAVE AN IMPACT ON THE RESULT?
Ricky Spooner – It shouldn’t, but it might. He has been red hot this year and is obviously taking the next step in terms of his performance. He has the ability to turn a game, or put it away. Losing him is like Richmond losing Dusty.
Richie Stanley – Are you kidding me?
Ricky Spooner – You don’t think he’s an important player?
Richie Stanley – To you he might be. Comparing him to Dusty is a massive stretch. He is nowhere near as influential.
Ricky Spooner – Have you actually watched any Collingwood games this season?
Richie Stanley – Have you forgotten how good Martin is?
HBMeyers- OK, hang on. There is no question around either point of view here. Martin is a footballing savant. De Goey is similar at the same stage of his career, and is having a big impact this season, hence the question – does it impact the result?
Richie Stanley – No, Richmond still wins.
Ricky Spooner – I didn’t even see this sort of arrogance from Hawthorn supporters during the threepeat. Losing de Goey hurts. There is no doubt there, but we have had a balanced forward line all year. If he has a quiet one, Stephenson bobs up, or Hoskin-Eiilott or Thomas recently. There are many avenues to goal, but de Goey is a big loss.
WHO DOES RANCE GO TO?
Richie Stanley – Whoever he wants to. What people fail to understand is that it doesn’t matter who he goes to as our defence is a unit. Him, Grimes and Astbury rotate through the entire opposition forward set up. All of them help and all of them work for the team. It isn’t about one guy.
Ricky Spooner – Finished with the Rance appreciation? He will go to Mihocek similar to the way McGovern did when we played against West Coast. It is up to Mihocek to be dangerous and compete to make him accountable.
HBMeyers – Good answer.
Richie Stanley – Thanks.
HBMeyers – Not you.
WHO IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PLAYER ON THE GROUND?
Richie Stanley – I’ll give you one that you may not expect. Kane Lambert. He has been awesome all year and should be right in contention for All Australian consideration this season. He is a running machine and does a lot of the work that goes unnoticed unless you have a trained eye. Did you have him in your last All Australian team, Mongrel?
HBMeyers – Nope.
Richie Stanley – See, you don’t know a good player when you see one.
Ricky Spooner – I’ll give you a considered answer instead of the idiocy you’re getting from him. Shane Edwards is the one I worry about at Richmond. When he gets it, he uses it wel so we need to limit him. For us, Travis Varcoe needs to do what Edwards has been doing for Richmond. He needs to be clean, make good decisions and make others around him better.
HBMeyers – You think he has the capacity to do this for the entire game? He flashes in and out a little too much for me.
Ricky Spooner – I know you think that. I read your reviews, but he is a difference maker and he reads the play so well. Have you seen some of his front and squares this season. They’ve been close to perfect.
Richie Stanley – Like those of Mister Jack Higgins?
Ricky Spooner – He is a very different player.
Richie Stanley – But he reads the ball off the pack beautifully. You can’t deny that.
Ricky Spooner – I’m not denying it.
Richie Stanley – Because you can’t.
DARCY MOORE – FORWARD OR BACK?
Ricky Spooner – I’d try him forward unless Riewoldt has a good start. I think he is the ideal opponent for Riewoldt, but I want a good marking target that has a bit of speed about him to trouble the Richmond defenders.
Richie Stanley – Better look elsewhere then, because Jack will own him. No one uses their body as well as Riewoldt and he is playing out of his skin. Another AA possibility.
Ricky Spooner – I will admit that Riewoldt has been excellent, but I think a combination of Scharenberg and a floating Howe can subdue him. We need to take intercept marks and take those crumbing Tiger forwards out of the game.
Richie Stanley – You need a reality check, and you’ll get one tomorrow.
I’M REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THE RUCK DUEL. CAN NANKERVIS LIMIT THE INFLUENCE OF GRUNDY?
Ricky Spooner – In a word; no. Grundy is a competitive beast, and while Nankervis is a good and diligent worker, he is a plodder and can’t keep up with Grundy.
Richie Stanley - **** me! Did you watch any Nankervis games this year? The guy is an animal. Aerobically I would back him against any ruck in the league. He just doesn’t give up.
Ricky Spooner – So he’s a battler? A good, honest battler?
Richie Stanley – You underestimate him at your own peril. He does the stuff no one else wants to do. He will sneak forward and make Collingwood hurt tomorrow. You mark my words, son.
Ricky Spooner – And if he doesn’t? Can I still mark your words and throw them in your face? Grundy is the potential All Australian ruck. Nankervis is a solid contributor but you’re delusional if you think they’re on the same level. Grundy is miles ahead. He controls games.
Richie Stanley – Nank will put that knee into his gut and take him out.
Ricky Spooner – Words of the wisdom from the ruck guru, it seems.
MASON COX BACK IN THE COLLINGWOOD SIDE – HOW DOES THIS AFFECT THINGS?
Ricky Spooner – It straightens us up and brings the smaller guys into it when he brings the ball to ground. He has improved out of sight this year.
Richie Stanley – He’s a spud. You can take a spud, skin it, mash it, fry it, boil it and do whatever you like to it, but at the end of the day it’s still a spud, and Mason Cox is an absolute spud! A well-structured defence will render him ineffective and he’ll revert to that big clunky dud who was dropping uncontested marks earlier in the year.
Ricky Spooner – Or he’ll put you to the sword with some big overhead marks. When he elevates and extends, no one can spoil him. No one.
Richie Stanley – Lucky we have a few guys who know how to put a body on a guy so he can’t get a clean run at it. Defence isn’t all about that contest. It’s about the work that goes into it early.
AND FINALLY, GENTLEMEN – A WINNER AND A MARGIN?
Richie Stanley – Tigers by nine goals after a close first half. They will hang in for a little while and then the premiership quarter will tell the tale for the Tigers.
Ricky Spooner – Pies in a close one. It’ll be tight and we’ll be able to make them sweat. We’re a better team than we were earlier in the year. Richmond are the same.
Ricky Spooner – You know what, we could lose today, take a bit out of it and come back better prepared for September. We are really in a no lose situation. We are an excellent team with room for improvement. I reckon Richmond has peaked too early. They’re drinking their own bath water at the moment and it’ll come back to haunt them. They won’t win the flag this year – they’re too full of themselves – at least the supporters are anyway, and everyone wants to see you fall on your ass.
Richie Stanley – Want a tissue? We’ll whack you tomorrow. We’ve talent we haven’t spoken about. Rioli, Vlastuin, Caddy, Short off the back of the square. We’ve got too many weapons and you’ll run out of steam trying to stop them all. You’ll try to take the game on and fail, and when you do, we will pounce. Mongrel, do you know what time it’ll be about then?
HBMeyers – Tell me.
Richie Stanley – TIGER TIME!
Ricky Spooner – I reckon your watch stopped in 2017.
Like what you’re getting from the Mongrel? Wanna be involved in a preview or write for us? You can! Send us a message, give us a Like on Facebook or a Follow on Twitter and hopefully we can have these two back after the game to discuss what went right and what went wrong. It’s going to be a cracker today!