THIS YEAR AT THE RHYCE SHAW MEDAL, WE DECIDED TO LET THE FANS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES IN DESCRIBING THE INS AND OUTS OF SUPPORTING THEIR PARTICULAR FOOTBALL CLUBS. THEY HAVE UNIQUE INSIGHTS INTO THE APPROPRIATE HAPPY AND SAD EMOJIS TO USE WHEN SUPPORTING THEIR PARTICULAR TEAMS AND, USUALLY, A FORM OF ONE-EYED SUPPORT THAT EVERYONE ELSE FINDS HILARIOUS.
#15 – CARLTON BLUES
By Nate Dogg
Since I was in year 2 at school (1990), I’ve bled navy blue-and-white. A friend had moved to Adelaide that year from Victoria and was a massive Carlton fan. His Kernahan-esque mullet gave him extra cred, and so I jumped on the bandwagon (following Carlton, not the mullet…). Not 5 years later, Carlton repaid that bandwagoning in full – the 1995 premiership season. Winning 20 of 22 and taking home the flag was amazing and redemptive, with Carlton having lost the grand final 2 years prior. Although I do appreciate you have to be at least 20 years old now to actually remember this happening in your lifetime…
More growing pains are likely on the 2015 horizon as the reshaping of the roster continues at the now renamed Ikon Park. The midfield core at Carlton remains intact and its more experienced crew (Judd/ Murphy/ Gibbs/ Simpson/ Carrazzo) will again be asked to do a lot in terms of providing plenty of on-field leadership. That said, the forward and back lines clearly remain a work in progress. The roster contains plenty of ‘swingman’ players who can play either end of the ground but it would be great to see a solid and cohesive 22-man line-up by at least mid-season. Concerns about goal scorers and toughness will also need to be addressed, particularly after the off-season departures of Jarrad Waite and Mitch Robinson. But the Malthouse style of footy has got its rewards elsewhere, so if this young squad can turn the corner to finally take it and run with it (without handpassing back and forth 20 times) things might just be on the up. While finals footy might be slightly too optimistic (there’s a lot of very solid teams there in the mix), I’d be very happy with moving on from the 7 wins in 2014 to having a number with double digits in the ‘W’ column.
All-time favourite player?
Anthony Koutoufides. Of Souvlaki Hut fame.
Most interesting off-field player?
Tushay is the sort of company that parodies itself.
“Tushay Clothing represents fresh and creative designs with a strong focus on high quality fabrics.”
I really enjoy the mental picture of Gibbs and Russell going through a selection of cotton bolts, rubbing the material between their fingers and thoughtfully asking each other whether the thread count couldn’t be higher, and why not Egyptian? Or better yet, clothes made out of Mevlar?
“Tushay’s first collection ‘Pioneer’ is a reflection of their personal style and represents an experience or memory the boys share. You know, like repeatedly choking in finals, or receiving sad looks from Brett Ratten.”
Most hateable player?
Dale Thomas (especially in a Collingwood jersey)
Rising Star for your team?
Clem Smith, hard runner with a thumping kick.
Kade Simpson. Has a massive engine and can take the game on with great skills and determination.
Andrejs Everitt, too inconsistent.
Some might also argue that, “being Andrejs Everitt” is enough of an argument.
Listen, it’s not going to be an easy season for the Blues. But all I really need to see is Marc Murphy finally in the mix for a Brownlow. And Collingwood landing the wooden spoon. And Mick Malthouse taking that spoon and beating Bucks with it. That’s all. Not much to ask.
Carlton can win the flag this year if Kreuzer finally gets healthy, Murphy fulfils his potential as captain, Judd still has plenty in the tank and our defensive play finally clicks. If not, then there’s always tanking for priority picks again. A man’s gotta dream.