June 23, 2024

Essendon captain Zach Merrett acknowledges the significant impact that coach Brad Scott has made on the team since joining at the end of 2022. Despite the Bombers’ lengthy drought without a final win spanning over 7000 days, Merrett expresses optimism that the team is now heading in the right direction, attributing this positive change to the improvement of their professional standards. In a detailed discussion with former Collingwood star Nathan Buckley on Fox Footy’s Face To Face, Merrett candidly discusses the challenges he and the club have encountered in recent times.

Brad Scott, Coach of Essendon. Picture: Sarah Reed/AFL Photos via Getty Images

Essendon captain Zach Merrett reflects on the significant impact coach Brad Scott has had on the team since his arrival at the end of 2022, highlighting how Scott’s observations and challenges have prompted positive responses from the players. Merrett acknowledges his own receptiveness to Scott’s guidance, describing him as amazing and crediting him for simplifying matters. The Bombers’ 2023 season saw them as finals contenders, although they faced disappointing losses towards the end. Merrett emphasizes the team’s collective approach to improvement and the shift towards creating a world-class environment and culture. He expresses excitement about the team’s new recruits and the balanced feel they bring to the squad. Additionally, Merrett discusses his personal journey, including moments of self-reflection and a shift in mindset towards prioritizing the team’s success over individual accomplishments. Despite this, he remains fiercely competitive and committed to self-improvement.

A key aspect of Zach Merrett’s ongoing development as a footballer lies in his ability to strike a balance in both his personal life and his leadership role. The Essendon captain emphasizes the importance of living in the present moment and not dwelling on past mistakes while also being fully committed and focused when at the club. Merrett draws inspiration from his former captains, Jobe Watson, Brendon Goddard, and Dyson Heppell, noting their diverse leadership styles and incorporating elements from each into his own approach.

Merrett also shares a memorable encounter with Nathan Buckley, whom he reached out to in 2017 following a recommendation from his close friend and former Collingwood player, Tom Langdon. Despite initial nerves, Merrett found value in Buckley’s advice to appreciate the journey and not solely focus on the end goal. Reflecting on his past, Merrett admits to being consumed by the desire to win a premiership, leading to moments where he neglected to appreciate the journey. However, Merrett acknowledges that adopting a more balanced perspective has significantly enhanced his enjoyment of the game, particularly cherishing moments like leading the team out onto the field each week.

Bombers head coach Brad Scott celebrates winning with Zach Merrett. Picture: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *