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2017 AFLW Season Review - Intrigue and Potential in Inaugural Campaign

Embed from Getty Images Expectations as well as doubts surrounded the inaugural AFLW season but it proved to be an intriguing experience as groups of women realised their dream of becoming elite footballers.
The 2017 season will be looked at in a mixed light. The nay-sayers will criticise the game for its low attendances and the fact that the crowds had free entry to watch matches but for those who followed the competition intently, they would have seen that women’s football has the potential to grow.
Adelaide – Entertainers and Inaugural Premiers
Adelaide won the inaugural AFLW Grand Final against Brisbane by six points in a tight contest but the Crows were worthy winners. Throughout the season, the Crows were a powerful attacking force capable of outscoring almost any opponent that faced them.
Erin Phillips was the star of the team, displaying great goal sense and also possessing the ability to link-up with her teammates in the forward 50.
The daughter of SANFL legend Greg Phillips …

Brisbane 2017 AFLW Season Review - Lionesses Bringing Pride to Brisbane Town

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Brisbane was defeated in the AFLW Grand Final but the achievements of the Lions in the inaugural season should be something that the club and supporters should be proud of.
Before the season commenced, the Queenslanders weren’t given a hope or a prayer and were expected to finish the 2017 season as wooden spooners but instead they finished the top of the table and were the first side to secure their place in the Grand Final.
This was the team that defeated a highly-fancied Melbourne squad and defeated them by 15 points in the rain at Casey in Round 1 and then went on to win their next five AFLW matches.
Coach Craig Starcevich constructed a team built on solid defending and Brisbane was a very hard side to break down. There were teams that may have had more naturally gifted players but they could have been thrown kitchen sinks at the Lionesses and they coped more often that not.
Defensively, the Lions were great at closing down spaces, tackling opponents, marki…

Wenger must leave Arsenal at the end of the 2016/17 season

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Arsene Wenger needs to leave Arsenal at the end of the season if the club is to challenge for honours in the near future.
He will still go down in the history of the Gunners and he has done many great things for the club but both parties need a change of atmosphere.
Although the 67-year-old has brought silverware to the north London club, his reign will probably become infamously remembered for the number of times Arsenal has finished fourth in the English Premier League, which has happened six times.
He has been praised for his ability to work on a limited transfer budget, especially when the club had spent money on the Emirates Stadium, and he has turned a club once known for playing the most boring football in the United Kingdom into a team synonymous with entertaining football.
In the past the Gunners produced entertaining football and results but now there is style with little substance. He has become so focused on the aesthetics of football and his team a…

Brisbane Lions 2016 Review - A Season of Regression and Humiliation

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Disappointment and a lack of competitiveness were evident to see throughout the 2016 AFL season for Brisbane.
In the third season with Justin Leppitsch as coach, the Lions went backwards in terms of results, performances and player development.
Although some promising youngsters have emerged such as Josh Schache, Rhys Mathieson, and Jarrad Jansen, Brisbane looks like it is in worse shape than what it was in 2013 when Michael Voss was sacked as senior coach and Angus Johnson stepped down as club chairman.
Dismal Performances, Dismal Results
There were many occasions in which the Lions played some dour and uninspiring football and that should not be a surprise considering that the Queenslander club lost 19 games.
The 138-point defeat to Adelaide in Round 20 was clearly the worst of the lot but most of the other losses were just as humiliating and embarrassing. More often than not, Brisbane looked non-competitive and devoid of inspiration and determination.
Injury woes did have an effec…

Glimmers of Hope for Brisbane Despite Richmond Defeat

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Although the 2016 AFL season has been a dismal one for Brisbane, there are some positive signs for the future thanks to some of the youngsters that are emerging.
The Lions lost to Richmond by 42 points on Saturday and collectively they played uninspiring footy but there were some young players who showed that they deserve to be in the senior squad.
If there was one youngster that appealed to me more than the others, it was key forward Eric Hipwood.
He scored 3.2 from just seven disposals in only his second game of AFL football, which is quite impressive when great forwards like Wayne Carey and Jonathan Brown had to wait for their sixth and seventh games respectively to score their first senior goal.
His fellow key forward Josh Schache has played 13 games this season and against Richmond he had just eight touches but he scored a goal and set-up three others.
Both Hipwood and Schache were selected by Brisbane in the 2015 AFL draft and Lions coach Justin Leppitsch said after the game a…

Brisbane coaching staff needs to be held to account

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Brisbane needs to look at its coaching staff after the Lions succumbed to another defeat.
On Sunday the Lions lost to Melbourne by 63 points and although there was more effort than in the defeat against Collingwood, there were still some skill errors made and the inaccuracy in front of goal still remains.
To keep blaming the players or poor recruiting is narrow-minded in my view and certain aspects of Brisbane’s coaching need to be assessed.
If the press conference after the 78-point loss against the Magpies was anything to go by, head coach Justin Leppitsch seems to have lost faith in his own ability to coach the Lions.
This team has progressed little since 2014 and the players are inconsistent performers. Leppitsch from the outside looking in does not come across as a great strategist or a great motivator.
It is very easy to single out the senior coach and it is also easy to blame the players for a lack of ability or effort but how about the assistant coaches?
Leigh Harding and S…

Brisbane was So Close to Victory Against Sydney

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Brisbane lost to Sydney today but the Lions can take pride in the performance that they put on show, almost coming close to victory themselves.
Although the Lions only lead for a few minutes in the first quarter, they kept on persisting and they avoided another heavy defeat like the one they got last week against the Western Bulldogs.
There some were some players that under-performed in the three-point defeat but there were others that performed well in slippery conditions at the Gabba.
The Positives
Dayne Zorko was the standout for Brisbane with 33 disposals, seven tackles and a goal. He showed great fight and stamina and he used the ball well throughout the match. Pearce Hanley was also fantastic for the Lions, collecting 25 disposals, making 12 tackles and scoring two vital goals.
Mitch Robinson gathered 28 disposals and made seven tackles and he demonstrated once again that he is one of Brisbane’s toughest midfielders. He was a hard tackler and he went in hard into the contests.
D…