Cats channel spirit of 1970s Hawks - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cats channel spirit of 1970s Hawks

By Greg Buckle 16/09/2010 05:12:06 PM Comments (0)

Coaching against Mark Thompson's Geelong side is a bit like going up against John Kennedy's Hawks in the 1970s, Mick Malthouse says.

Malthouse's AFL minor premiers Collingwood take on Thompson's Cats in Friday night's preliminary final at the MCG and for Malthouse there's nothing new in what the Cats will offer.

"In the past three or four years they've been the best side," Malthouse said of the 2007 and 2009 premiers.

"That type of set-up is there for everyone to see.

"The more successful you are, the more you are being watched.

"There wouldn't be a side that doesn't know how they play.

"It's hard to coach against when they've got great players who are in great form.

"John Kennedy way way way back said `we're going to do this, and we're going to do it because we're familiar with it and consistent with it. Everyone will know about it but we're going to do it better than everyone else.'

"So you know the game structure but have you got the weapons to counter it? That's what you've got to ask."

Malthouse, who has been an AFL coach since 1984 and claimed two premierships with West Coast in the 1990s, says the match-day influence of the coach is over-rated anyway.

"We have this bit of a hang-up about the coach. If a side wins, the other side has been outcoached," he said.

"I think that's the biggest fallacy there is.

"It's not the case. I could coach very very well and be beaten.

"I could coach poorly and the side gets over the line.

"Very rarely does a coach on match day help the side win.

"Collectively as a coach and player group, you help win from October because that's what you set in place.

"Great sides can make great coaches. Great coaches don't necessarily make great sides.

"But let's take nothing away from Bomber (Thompson). He has been outstanding and so have Geelong."

Thompson said last week of Geelong's finals success in the past three years at Collingwood's expense: "I'm sure they probably hate us."

Malthouse says he doesn't know the context of the comments and isn't bothered.

"Was he joking or was he serious? Unless I see these things I don't get too caught up," Malthouse said.

"It's been reported three or four times and it's been said differently, so I don't know what it was all about.

"I don't personally (hate Geelong) and I don't think my player group do either. It's not something that we've ever discussed."

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