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Recruitment and Retention at the Dragons.

Discussion in 'St George Illawarra Dragons' started by SIR LANCELOT, Mar 1, 2021.

  1. SIR LANCELOT

    SIR LANCELOT Juniors

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    This is a major problem for our club now and going forward. It must be addressed now. What are the thoughts of the Forum .
     
  2. Morotti

    Morotti Juniors

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    Who would want to come here except for huge money and a long contract?

    Not like they will take less money to play finals if you were going somewhere like the Roosters or Storm.

    And i think we also struggle to develop players into their full potential.

    I dont see benefits of coming to the dragons over other teams except for big money or if you are a fringe first grader and want to get first grade games.
     
    Heavy D and Dragon David like this.
  3. JohnnoMcJohnno

    JohnnoMcJohnno Juniors

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    My thoughts:

    No-ones going to come if they hope to play finals footy.
    No-ones going to come for the coach. He only signed for two years and no guarantee after that.
    No-ones going to come for the lifestyle. It's not that different from Sydney or Brisbane.
    No-ones going to come because of our proud heritage.
    No-ones going to come if they want to improve their game. That just never happened under Mary and the jury is still out on Hook.
    No-one will come for our great facilities - every club has them these days.
    No-one will come for our culture. Whatever we might have had has been shot to bits by JDB, Corey Norman and Folau incidents, irrespective of the rights and wrongs of these cases.

    They will come for a bag full of money, but given that our big money is tied up in Norman and Hunt, they will probably do better to look elsewhere.
    They will come if no other club will have them, particularly when at the back end of their career.
    They might come because there is some St George history in their family.
    They might come because Wollongong is a great place to own a jet-ski.
    They might come because if they carry an injury, even one which requires you to completely strap an entire leg like Patrick Kaufusi, you'll still get a game.

    Let's face it, recruitment and retention is going to be difficult for some time. Sustained success on the field will change that but who knows when that will happen. Failing that, support your juniors and build a team around them. It will still take time.
     
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  4. Inisai Toga

    Inisai Toga Juniors

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    They’ll come if they see an opportunity and a get a fair go and back themselves. Believe that Griffin will lay that platform, he’s got no choice really. If Lomax, Dufty, Ramsey and Sullivan, Bird, Ford can all deliver attacking flair that wins football games, they’ll see how that will compliment their own game. It will be a bit of a messy ride though, but most change is.
     
  5. Crush

    Crush First Grade

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    I feel this is going to be the hot topic on the forum all year long.
    Last few years it has been Sack Mary pinned to the top of the forum.
    Now with Mary gone it’ll be our roster.

    I think we can all see that this season is going to be miserable. I hate that before a whistle is blown we are defeated but it’s the truth. South’s gave us a taste of what’s install this year. Our forwards are mostly reserve grade level and those that aren’t (Vaughan, Sims) seem to be not putting in, no competition for their spots.
    Our halves aren’t going to lift. Corey isn’t going to play better this year because it’s a contract year because he doesn’t have it in him. He’s slow and pedestrian, devoid of creativity.
    Ben Hunt isn’t going to rise up and lead the men now that he is captain. I feel sorry for the guy, he will be the media scapegoat no doubt when we are getting flogged week in week out.
    We have some good young backs now in the team but they aren’t going to win us games of football. They are no better than other talented backs around the NRL who are playing outside functioning forwards and creative, confident halves.

    So I am sorry to say it but it’s going to be a very long while before we get back to where we should be.
    I can’t believe we are even weaker than last year....
     
  6. Dragon David

    Dragon David Juniors

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    Money and fame, is the name of the game. Whole hearted pride in wearing the Big Red V should be the motivator.

    Recruitment and retention of key players in all positions would be a tough job nowadays particular for us because of most of the reasons JohnnoMcJohnno stated.

    Success is built on getting the right results and unless we can develop to become successful, getting sought after players will be hard.

    Hook and Co. and Haran and Millward would know what we need surely, so by the end of this year they should be chasing the good ones to come to the club and re-signing the good ones we already have. In the meantime, get that winning culture as soon as possible.
     
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  7. Dragon David

    Dragon David Juniors

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    Yes, I agree with what you say Crush. The team is weaker and lacks true motivation to withstand the strengths of the other teams.
     
  8. Dragonslayer

    Dragonslayer First Grade

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    Firstly, I think the retention of our brightest juniors has to be commended, we have locked most up medium to long term, even the revent re-signing of Ramsey is testament to this.

    However!

    Our 'senior' recruitement and retention has been comical to say the least.
    Where did it go wrong?

    The answer lies somewhere between our previous coaching staff wanting 'experienced' players you know the ones they didn't have to 'coach' eg: Lats, Maranta, Luke even throw in Merrin, and the 'mate' relationship between coach and players ie: do what i say, no question and you will play.

    Another question is, why do (arguably our better) players want to leave such a famous club? Eg: Widdop and Friz as recent examples

    Finally, how many have been pushed out the door, due to lack of opportunity or development? Eg: Host, Herbert, Robson to name a few.

    The biggest clue to where we stand right now is the halt on re-signing players, Ramsey being the exception. No one knows our true Cap position and it's too easy to say, we should have X $$$ because a player left and hasn't been replaced. Current players may be on back-ended contract for example which would eat into our Cap position.
    We have tried to lure some players, big name players, but as recently reported, player managers see us as a hoaring bitch, a tool to get more $$ for their client. There's also the inflated opinion of players themselves, Big O is a good example, where we wanted to pay a certain amount he thought he was worth more. I actually agree with this strategy, as over inflated contracts, just to sign someone, is why we are in the position we are in today.

    Many will yave to face the hard truth that 2021 will not be a pretty year, and how unfortunate as it is our 100yr anniversary.
    And don't blame Hook, he has been on deck 4 months, he will try things, experiment, they sometimescwill work and sometimes they won't. The fact that he's trying is far better than retainig the status quo from previous years.
    Isn't that what a coach is employed to do, change and invent new things?
     
  9. kit66

    kit66 Juniors

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    St George Illawarra Dragons is a business and like any business you need great people in management to steer the company and get it humming along, being successful and turning a healthy profit. We don't have that, we have a bunch of incompetents who are happy to collect a pay cheque.
    If some other National company had a branch performing as bad as ours ( make no mistake, we are a basket case ) they'd shut it down, cut their losses.
     
  10. muzby

    muzby Village Idiot Staff Member

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    I think they should appoint Possm as head of recruitment & retention
     
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  11. redVinme

    redVinme Juniors

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    Only if bird stays healthy and plays centre have we replaced a player with a better quality player in the last 5 years...

    The idea of trying to win games like that boggles the mind.
     
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  12. FlameThrower

    FlameThrower Bench

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    The Club also needs to really think hard about being a development club. It takes years of investment and with no guarantee of success. We should be seriously considering looking at Feeder club agreement as an interim for the next few years, As I reckon we have 2-3 years of rebuilding. Meanwhile, look outside the NRL as nobody wants to come here and look at ESL as the Raiders have. It’s now obvious players no longer see the Dragons as a club of opportunity nor a powerhouse and consistent top-8 side with regular success.
    The Hunt / Norman albatross, just underlines how poorly we’ve recruited and now are stuck with duds eating up the cap who have never really stepped up.
     
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  13. Dragons4lyf95

    Dragons4lyf95 Juniors

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    100% Agree. People tend to forget that the big $ that Hunt is on is solely due to your above facts. We will continue to attract average at best players and pay overs just so they can come to the club. Or could be lucky to nag a Brandon Smith but again, will be something like a 4-5 year deal 1M a year.. its going to be a long road but it feels again we are at that period where Price was sacked and Mary came in.. we have done another 360 AGAIN.
     
  14. Slippery Morris

    Slippery Morris First Grade

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    I also think the bad press Griffin got, when he was appointed did not helped the club either. A lot of players probably feel Griffin is not capable of getting Saints to finals because apparently some so called media experts said he can't coach. If he improves the Dragons, they may have some success next year in recruitment plus they will have some $$ in the cap with Norman leaving.

    Alvaro is the new Latimore. This guy is not going to improve the squad any better than a current junior that is on the books. All he will do is block their development like Latimore did to poor Luciano which saw him have less game time than he should have had.

    Millward has done a great job securing local juniors but his form in getting players from other teams has not been good. Do you blame the scouts for this or the coaches? Who are the scouts that Saints use?

    Watching the Charity shield I think the Souths team is now playing a Demitriou style of footy. Very attacking just like Saints did when he had the juniors. Saints should have never let him go and replaced Mary with him. That is the biggest stuff up they have made.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2021
  15. Dragon David

    Dragon David Juniors

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    Slippery Morris said -
    "Watching the Charity shield I think the Souths team is now playing a Demitriou style of footy. Very attacking just like Saints did when he had the juniors. Saints should have never let him go and replaced Mary with him. That is the biggest stuff up they have made."

    Again another stuff up by management. Demetriou was far better equipped to coaching first grade than McGregor. He had previous success of course coaching the Northern Pride and the Illawarra Cutters to premiership wins and as assistant coach at the Cowboys, Dragons, Broncos and Bunnies (the last two being under Bennett). So his credentials now are quite impressive. He should have continued success when Bennett leaves the Bunnies at the end of this year.

    Until we have several games in the 2021 premiership proper, the abilities of the new coaches and how they get our current squad to perform will be closely watched. It is going to be a tough year and who we retain and recruit subsequently will be a major matter.

    We need more positives than negatives going forward to have appeal for recruitment of desirables. Attractive football from our guys would help as well as good management.
     
  16. This Year?

    This Year? Coach

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    We're a development club. Instead of paying ridiculous money for players like Hunt and Norman we should be giving our juniors incremental 1st grade time with the money to match. If Norman and Hunt went well it would have been a masterstroke, but sadly they haven't delivered and it has become more of a lesson in cap management.
    We still need some outside players but more as fillers instead of stars. If our juniors are as good as many here say they are, then why aren't they showcasing their skills on the big stage?
     
  17. Old Timer

    Old Timer Coach

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    Acquisitions: Norman, Graham, Williame, Latimore, Fuimaono, Maranta, T Sims, Merrin

    Losses: Widdop, Frizzell, Leilua, Host.

    Amazing that both the acquisitions and the losses have impacted us badly.

    Dopey decisions: Hunt not for actually signing him that was sort of understandable but for the length of the contract and the extra year being in his favour not ours. Mc Innes for the way / manner by which we didn't negotiate which was embarrassing especially in light of his service and him being our captain. The entire Folau clusterf**k.

    Sort of shows the reality of things.

    Hopefully now Hook & Co can sift through the wreckage and make astute decisions re retention of juniors and acquisition of players on the verge of succeeding and get rid of the dead wood and ultimately gain a few worthy signings of established players.

    Not going to happen this year or probably even next but small steps and development of what we have to the best of its ability (some of it very limited) and then the hard climb back up the ladder.
     
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  18. SIR LANCELOT

    SIR LANCELOT Juniors

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    Terrific input from the forum members.Keep it going lads.I am sure there is more of us who have an opinion to give.What are your thoughts re the Illawarra connection re Millward.Our recruited juniors from St George Dragons do not seem to be kept on.
    e.g Host,Sele, Leilua and maybe letting Duffy go.Seems a bit suspicious to me.Or is it the area divide.St.George area and then Illawarra.A few more points from me for discussion
     
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  19. muzby

    muzby Village Idiot Staff Member

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    I think you’ll find that rather than a conspiracy, it comes down to the quality of the St George juniors not being as good as what’s coming from the south coast.

    You only need to look at the silverware collected to see that.

    Plenty of Illawarra juniors are let go too..
     
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  20. JohnnoMcJohnno

    JohnnoMcJohnno Juniors

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    Suspect it's more to do with St George juniors preferring to remain in Sydney rather than travel down to the 'Gong.
     

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