Each week, The Behind Post looks at who’s falling behind the pack and failing to live up to expectations. If things don’t go according to plan for this player or team this round, they could well be bashed from pillar to post come Monday morning.
The Gold Coast Suns
The talent on the Suns’ list is unquestionable. So why aren’t they performing? Five years since the club’s induction into the league, the young draftees are no longer kids with potential, but young adults who by now should be star players.
Perhaps the recruiting team at the Suns simply got it wrong and we were all deceived. Perhaps the players actually aren’t good enough to turn this side into a champion team. However, judging from the start the Gold Coast had to the season last year and the flashes of brilliance we’ve seen, that’s unlikely to be the case.
The biggest issue appears to be consistency. Any great team of the past decade, most notably Geelong and Hawthorn, will tell you that turning talent and exciting wins into regular polished consistent performances is the hardest part of taking the next step. Rodney Eade needs his side to find those consistent performances week in week out. The Suns must find a way to start winning and quick smart. If they don’t, the consequcnes will be devastating.
Losses to Melbourne and St. Kilda were bad enough. A loss to GWS this week would spell disaster. These issues have been brought up before; however, now that the Suns are in year five, the situation has become dire. The Suns don’t appear to be hungry enough on the ground and are clearly not playing for eachother. The talent is there, but their knowledge of how to play the game is also far behind where it should be.
The blowtorch is shinning even brighter due to the recent coaching change. The Suns narrowly missed the finals last year and this year brought in an experience head coach in Rodney Eade in order to take them deep into finals action. The final piece in the puzzle it seemed. However, seeing as so far the change has seen the Suns start the season without a win, the spotlight is on them now more than ever.
Of equal importance is the growth of Greater Western Sydney. The expansion club who began their journey into the AFL a year later than the Suns seem to have recruited better and overtaken their counterparts to be further along in their development. All this makes for a lot of pressure on the players’ shoulders come game day. Should GWS beat Gold Coast this week, their season is as good as over, 2015 will be another disappointed and by Monday morning, the AFL media will be circling.