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VFL player review: Round 2

VFL | Kreuzer goes long Matthew Kreuzer goes for goal on-the-run in his return to football via the VFL.

NORTHERN Blues senior coach Josh Fraser analyses the performances of the Carlton-listed players who featured in the one-point win over Geelong. 

1. Jack Silvagni

Stats: 20 disposals, five clearances, five tackles, 2.3
From the coach: Jack split his time between forward and inside mid. He finished with six shots on goal — he was lively and creative in the front half of the ground. His stoppage work and contested ball-winning ability was a highlight when he was playing through the midfield. It was a really strong performance in both areas of the ground.

Jack Silvagni was prolific in the midfield and forward line for the Northern Blues. (Photo: Rose Zarucky)

8. Matthew Kreuzer

Stats: 15 disposals, 27 hitouts, six inside 50s, one goal
From the coach: It was a return to playing for Kreuz and he hit the ground running basically straight away with his competitiveness in the ruck. He kicked a terrific running goal, was involved with a lot of follow-up and tackle efforts and really showed the strength of his game when he was on the ball. It was pleasing that he got through and performed well against three quality talls. He’ll only get better from here too.

13. Liam Stocker

Stats: 16 disposals, five marks, seven rebound 50s
From the coach: ’Stock’ continues to impress and grow parts of his game defensively. His ball-use across half-back was terrific. He’s still learning and adapting to our defensive systems and structure but he’s showing growth in that each week. We’re really pleased with how he’s developing. To get 16 disposals in that half-back area of the ground is a good return.


16. Darcy Lang

Stats: 12 disposals (100 percent efficiency), four rebound 50s
From the coach: Darcy’s first return to footy, he was quite lively offensively across half-back. He’s playing more in the defensive end of the ground, so he’ll have to keep refining the system and positioning. It was really exciting to get the ball in his hands and see some run and zip out of that part of the ground.

19. Angus Schumacher

Stats: 15 disposals, four rebound 50s
From the coach:
’Schuey’ generally used the ball by foot pretty well. He had some really good moments under pressure where he was nice and composed and was able to find a teammate. Defensively, he showed a lot of improvement in the air and being able to come back and defend his man one-on-one. We think if he can become more consistent over four quarters, we’re going to see someone really good footy from him.

21. Jarrod Garlett

Stats: Nine disposals, one goal
From the coach: Jarrod played 75-80 percent up forward with a little hit on the wing. He had nine possessions: we’d like to see him apply more tackle pressure in the front half. He’s dangerous around goals and he’s really creative, we saw little pieces of excitement from him. We need to see more of it but he’ll keep getting better spending his time between midfield, forward and down back.

32. Alex Fasolo

Came from the ground early in the first quarter due to a back injury.

36. Patrick Kerr

Stats: 13 disposals, three score assists, 2.1
From the coach: Patty Kerr had three or four shots on goal and presented well at the kicker. His contested marking work on the day wasn’t a strong suit, so there’s something for us to work on there this week. He’s going to keep working on his ability to apply pressure as a tall. He’s definitely having an impact for us as a lead-up forward and his hands are as clean as anyone’s.

Patrick Kerr kicked two goals for the Northern Blues in the one-point win. (Photo: Rose Zarucky)

37. Ben Silvagni

Stats: Eight disposals, four spoils, three rebound 50s
From the coach: We liked some of what Benny was able to do. We thought his defensive positioning got much better from previous weeks, he put himself in the contest and was able to get the ball to the ground. That’s some big growth, it’s something that can be difficult for a young player to adjust to. We thought that there were some encouraging signs and we know he’s working really hard on his game each week. We’ll keep seeing improvement from him.

38. Finbar O’Dwyer

Stats: 10 disposals, one goals
From the coach: Finbar, he was lively: that was the best way to describe his game. He did some things which were really classy for a young player. He’s got to keep building his ability to play through four quarters of football, he’s someone who hasn’t played a lot of football in 12 months. He’s a player who we see little improvements from and we think he’s going to be a clever player in the front half of the ground.

Finbar O'Dwyer celebrates his first VFL goal. (Photo: Rose Zarucky)

44. Matthew Owies

Stats: Two disposals, three tackles
From the coach: Matthew Owies was a bit unwell on the day but he was able to provide a spark in our forward half, whether he was jumping for aerial balls, halving contests or applying pressure on the ground. For someone who’s new to footy, he’s someone who will get better each week. As a small forward, he’s doing some things we like.

45. Hugh Goddard

Stats: 12 disposals, five marks, five spoils
From the coach: I liked Hugh’s game: defensively, he was really stable for us in the back-line and he had some really important aerial wins against guys who are over 200cm. His organisation and leadership with the other defenders around him was really important.