Chris Scott watches his team slide towards defeat against Port Adelaide. Photo: Getty Images
A despondent but realistic Geelong coach shouldered most of the blame for the Cats' surprise 40-point loss to Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval.
“We had a lot of very good players who were down tonight,” Chris Scott said. “But if I had to choose one or the other right now, I would say it’s more my fault more than the players.
“We [the coaches] had an off night. I even said to the players at half-time – and I don’t mind saying this publicly – that we made some real blues in the coach’s box. In the preparation a little bit, but also not reacting to certain things. We will make sure that we review our performance really strongly as well.”
The loss meant Port replaced Geelong on top of the ladder, and snapped a 10-game winning streak starting from the 2007 grand final.
Scott refused to concede that playing tough games in the previous two rounds – a 75-point win against West Coast at Patersons Stadium and a 19-point win over Hawthorn – had been a factor in Geelong’s ordinary performance.
“We had a few issues, we had a few issues as the game went on as well, but that is every game,” Scott said.
“It would be the easy way out to look at the issues that were outside of our control as opposed to looking at how the game was played when the heat was really on.
“Believe it or not, I think we will be better for this game. The sting is short term. We did not play well; they played very well … in today’s footy that means a lot.
“I did not think the scoreboard was a reflection of the evenness of the game; the numbers don’t always tell the whole story. We weren’t able to put pressure on them and take our opportunities; they certainly took theirs.
“We are normally good at finishing off our work. It tends to be quite demoralising irrespective of the character of your people when you blow chances at one end and get opened up at the other end.
“I think it would be over-confidence to tell you that we will be fine and everyone will bounce back and we will be definitely better. It’s possible that we will be better if we react the right way and we do the work and have a look at the things we need to improve on.
“One game is not a disaster. We will continue to play the young ones who deserve the opportunity and back them in to do the job.”
Scott described Port’s midfield as one of the best Geelong had faced this season, and claimed it was bit of a misnomer this perception that Port had been low on talent.
“People really in the know have been aware that Robbie Gray is an exceptional player, Travis Boak is an exceptional player, Hamish Hartlett is an exceptional player,” Scott said.