June 24, 2024

As a devoted follower of the Bulldogs for numerous years, I’ve grown accustomed to seasons filled with disappointment. Thus, it came as a complete surprise, or rather, a shock, when the Bulldogs achieved the ultimate feat in 2016. Similarly, although far from expected in 2021, they managed to make it to the grand final, another remarkable accomplishment.

However, the period between these two milestones has been far from impressive. A discernible trend has emerged in my observation: the Bulldogs seem to be on a downward trajectory. Despite possessing one of the most talented rosters in the league, the coaching staff, led by Bevo and Co., appear unable to consistently extract the best performances from the team.

While there have been glimpses of the Bulldogs’ potential in strong team displays on a couple of occasions this season, their weaknesses and shortcomings have been glaringly evident on at least four occasions. Sunday’s lackluster performance against Hawthorn was particularly disappointing, especially considering that they were facing a team vying for the wooden spoon.

AFL 2024: Western Bulldogs problems, Luke Beveridge sacked chances,  contract, future, will he leave like Damien Hardwick, analysis, latest news

Let’s begin with the decision to include certain players at the expense of proven performers being left out of the team.

Additionally, there’s the issue of deploying our talented players in unfamiliar positions and a noticeable deficiency in basic skills execution. This includes missed kicks, handpasses leading to trouble, collisions among teammates in marking contests, and a general lack of tackling pressure.

Opposing players often seemed to effortlessly bypass Bulldogs players, leaving observers wondering if they were simply watching in awe.

While the players undoubtedly have the ability to perform better, what seemed to be lacking was the passion and attention to detail.

I’m confident that the coaching staff did not intend for such a display from the team, but they must take responsibility for it nonetheless.

The fundamental problem seems to be Beveridge’s inclination towards reshaping the team for the future. However, both the players and the fans are left perplexed by this approach and are discontent with the current trajectory.

This lack of understanding and dissatisfaction has created a communication barrier between the players and the coaching staff, with the former failing to fully embrace the new structure and selection strategies proposed by the coaching panel.

Furthermore, there are concerns about the direction taken by some specialist coaches within the club, particularly evident in the midfield’s struggles.

Then there were the comments made by Sam Draper. As a devoted Bulldogs fan, I appreciate Sam’s candidness because it echoes the sentiments of many long-time supporters.

While Bevo may find the comments “bizarre,” it’s worth recalling that a similar situation led to his hiring at the club many years ago.

In essence, Mr. Beveridge, it’s time to step aside and allow for a fresh perspective and a coach who can effectively communicate with the team.

Regrettably, this transition may also necessitate changes within the support staff and possibly see some fringe players finding success elsewhere.

As someone who has supported the club through thick and thin, I am not eager to return to the cycle of mediocrity following our premiership victory in 2016.

With that said, Bevo, I extend my gratitude for the memories of 2016, but it’s time to bid farewell and allow for new leadership to guide the Bulldogs forward.

Dogs on upward AFL curve: coach Beveridge | Blue Mountains Gazette |  Katoomba, NSW

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