Bailey expects Demons to end winless run - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bailey expects Demons to end winless run

By Robert Grant 17/04/2009 03:53:26 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne coach Dean Bailey expects the Demons to break their winless run to the AFL season on Sunday on their own merit against fellow strugglers Richmond.

The Tigers and their coach Terry Wallace have been put through the ringer this week after being thumped by the Western Bulldogs on Easter Monday.

As the pre-season wooden spoon favourites, the Demons have largely avoided outside scrutiny despite also starting the season with three straight losses, but Bailey insists they have the talent to beat Richmond.

"We expect to play well, regardless of the opposition," Bailey said on Friday.

"They've had a tough week but it doesn't change our focus.

"We need to be competitive for the whole game, for four quarters and it should happen this weekend."

While neither side has broken through yet, Bailey said Richmond had the tougher start.

"They've played two outstanding teams - Geelong at Skilled Stadium's a tough ask and the Bulldogs last week," he said.

"I'd reckon most of the people in the room would have those two teams playing off in preliminary finals and I would think that half the room might have them playing off in a grand final."

Bailey saw a window of hope during the Demons' 57-point loss to Port Adelaide last Sunday but indicated it would be some time before consistency could be achieved.

"We showed glimpses last week - not enough, not long enough and in the second quarter they kicked four or five really easy goals which is really disappointing," he said.

"The great challenge is to prevent the number of easy goals that have been scored against us.

"Last year there were a lot of them, this year there are less of them but that doesn't make it acceptable.

"Too often in the first three weeks there's been small windows of the game where teams have scored consecutive goals against us and we need to be competitive at that stage.

"When the game's in the balance that's when you have to be competitive."

Bailey said he had some sympathy with Wallace, who was the subject of a lurid "Death Row" newspaper headline this week speculating about his future.

"I think the words used were inappropriate but I would think Terry, and I know we, are looking forward to playing the game on Sunday," Bailey said.

"The headline certainly brought some attention. I don't think it was an acceptable headline but that's the way it was portrayed so we now move on and play the game."

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