Lyon only went for cash: Maclure
Fremantle coach Ross Lyon only left St Kilda for the money and it is showing in the Dockers game style, according to Cartlon premiership great Mark Maclure.
Speaking on AFL 360 last night Maclure said Lyon joined the Dockers for the wrong reasons and didn’t believe the group had enough class to win by playing offensive, old-fashioned football.
Fremantle have drawn strong criticism for their defensive gamestyle after massive losses to Hawthorn and West Coast over the past two weeks.
While the negative mindset has seen the Dockers concede the fifth least points this season, it has also affected their ability to hit the scoreboard themselves. The club ranks 15th in total points scored.
“Ross actually left for money and that’s not a good thing,” Maclure said.
“Sometimes you go for reasons because you want to go and coach that side, but it wasn’t because he wanted to go and coach that side (Fremantle). It was because they offered him a lot of money.
“I like Ross, I think he’s a very good coach. But sometimes he destroys the game and I don’t like that.
“This is a game we love. We’re in the entertainment business, we’re not in the killing of football business.”
Maclure’s comments are the latest in a swarm of criticism aimed at the port club and their new coach since Sunday’s disastrous western derby loss to West Coast.
Lyon’s former coach Robert Walls earlier this week said the coach had to get more offensive or risk losing supporters, while former Richmond champion Kevin Bartlett labelled the side “unwatchable”.
Collingwood premiership coach Mick Malthouse, who coached against Lyon in 2010’s grand final and the replay, says playing a purely defensive game is not a viable or successful option in the long term.
“They get all their players back behind the ball and very little structure in front of the ball, so when you come out you’re kicking it to no-one,” he said.
“If you don’t have the balance right, then you’re either too offensive or too defensive. Either one of those won’t win you a premiership.”
Some commentators have been more forgiving of the game style, but admitted the Dockers need to find more midfield class.
But despite the torrent of abuse, the club is sticking firmly by their coach and his defensive tactics.
Speaking at a school clinic yesterday, captain Matthew Pavlich admitted the side were struggling to come to grips with the new game plan, but warned that they would rebound quickly from their recent bad patch.
“We have got a couple of players injured at the moment who figure pretty prominently in our midfield group and we have got a couple of guys coming back who are a little bit under,” he said.
“We need to clearly work on some of the stoppage structure but we are not going to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
“We know that the group of players out there can get the job done for us. We just need to tweak a couple of things and our attitude is that the intensity has to be spot on the whole time.”