Melbourne great Garry Lyon believes one inside midfielder is Essendon’s missing piece, with Collingwood youngster Brayden Sier the perfect fit.
Lyon spoke on SEN Breakfast Thursday morning, stating that Essendon, who are winless in the opening two rounds of the season, should be targeting the 21-year-old who Lyon referred to as the “forgotten man of this AFL season”.
“Is he the player the Essendon footy club would absolutely die for? Isn’t he exactly what the Essendon footy club would need right now?” Lyon asked.
“He’s an inside bull.
“I’m not for a second suggesting Collingwood are even ever thinking about this.
“When you’ve got someone who sits outside a deep elite group like that…. if I’m Essendon, I’m ringing TLA, his management, and saying, ‘Righto, can we have a chat?’.
“If you can’t get in… you want to play senior footy… he’s a senior footballer, this kid.”
After debuting in round 15 against the Suns, Sier became a pivotal part of Collingwood’s on-ball brigade right up until the Grand Final.
In what was his third year on the Magpies list after being a surprise selection in the 2015 National Draft, Sier gained coach Nathan Buckley’s attention with his tackling and contested ball-winning abilities.
The Northern Knights product earned his spot all finals, and had a 21 possession, four tackle game in the Grand Final – in what was his 12th game of senior football.
“His back half of the year, last year, was outstanding. From Round 20 to the Grand Final, he averaged 22 disposals, 12 contested possessions, four tackles, four clearances,” said Lyon.
“They’re better numbers than Josh Kennedy, who I likened him to throughout the course of the year.”
After the major inclusion of star midfielder Dayne Beams, Collingwood’s midfield have received attention for boasting one of the best midfield brigades of the modern era.
In preparation for their Grand Final rematch against West Coast this weekend, Collingwood are set to include Taylor Adams who has recovered from a finger injury, while veteran Daniel Wells isn’t far away from being available.
For a player like Sier, he will look to learn from the talented crop of midfielders at the club, but is unlikely to receive an opportunity unless an injury or a suspension occurs.