2010 Season Preview: Game Plan

New Game, New Era – that’s the propaganda coming out of Arden St this season. But will 2010 represent an exciting new beginning for the North Melbourne Football Club? Or will it go down as another clichéd season for the perennial battlers? In this installment, Reverend Shinboner takes a look at the game plan North supporters are likely to see in 2010.

Brad Scott looking tough

North’s hot new front man, Brad ‘Bon’ Scott, has become the most popular appointment since Batman took over law enforcement in Gotham City. Whether his popularity remains intact at season’s end will largely depend on the game plan he drills into his chargers. While still very much an unknown, some clues as to what this might entail can be gleaned from the pre-season:

Contested Footy

North’s drafting told a tale in and of itself: Scott rates inside midfielders. Training sessions also suggest a heavy emphasis on moving the ball out of heavy traffic, defensive pressure and winning contested ball. The Geelong, Hawthorn and Brisbane premiership teams all possessed this trademark.

Rotations

Collingwood have utilised extraordinarily high midfield rotations to great effect over the past couple of seasons. Whether Scott (former midfield coach at CFC) was the innovator or not is unclear, but I expect a similar approach from the Roos in 2010, particularly given his recent study tour in the US. Apart from keeping players fresh, it will hopefully free up North’s key playmakers.

Attack through defense

North was the lowest scoring team in 2009 (yes, worse than Melbourne). Unsurprisingly, North also had the fewest inside 50s, many of which were optimistic long-bombs. Pre-season training drills suggest a renewed focus on clean transitional play from defensive 50, especially kick-ins (thank God!).

Conclusion

Under Laidley, North played to a defensive, if not reactive game style which got them over the line often enough, but failed against the A-grade sides. I expect this to change. While consistency will be a problem until the team settles, I’m anticipating a tough, uncompromising brand of football will ensure the Roos take some serious scalps in the season ahead. Brad Scott wouldn’t stand for anything less.

My Man: Sam Wright – check the massive handsand
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4 Comments

Filed under On Field

4 responses to “2010 Season Preview: Game Plan

  1. this is exactly right, well done! i really hope they do go for higher scoring, which would mean less close games

  2. The key to any game plan is to have a recognisable strategy and structure to your play. When you think of teams like North in the 90s, those Brisbane premiership sides, the Sydney premiership side, and the current Geelong, St.Kilda, Hawthorn, and Footscray teams, you can easily visualise and describe what their general strategies and structures are. But with Laidley, and after all the time he spent as our coach, I still couldn’t figure out our pattern of play was (apart from trying to negate the opposition). If in 12 months time, we can look at the North side and know what Scott is trying to do with the team, we would have moved forward.

    I just remember 12 months ago when Laidley was talking up a new game plan that would be used in 2009. After one shit half of football, in a pre-season game against Carlton, it was scrapped. I hope that whatever Scott does, he backs himself.

  3. Pingback: 2010 Season Preview: Key Players « Roo Beauty

  4. Pingback: 2010 Season Preview: Best 22 « Roo Beauty

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