Sheedy sets Bombers ambitious target

November 18, 2021 BY

The Don: Essendon godfather Kevin Sheedy reckons the current crop of baby Bombers could be knocking on the door of greatness. Photo: MICHAEL DODGE/ AAP IMAGE

ESSENDON legend Kevin Sheedy believes his former club should be pushing for a top four spot within two years after showing significant improvement in 2021.

The Bombers jumped from 13th to eighth in Ben Rutten’s first year as sole senior coach thanks to career-best seasons from All-Australian duo Darcy Parish and Zach Merrett and Jake Stringer’s red-hot form in the second half of the year.

Talented youngsters Nik Cox, Archie Perkins, Harrison Jones and Sam Draper all looked at home at senior level as Rutten’s new game style transformed the Bombers into one of the competition’s most exciting teams.

Sheedy, a four-time Essendon premiership coach, thinks the Bombers are on the right track under Rutten.

“To win the premiership would be very difficult but not impossible (in 2022),” Sheedy told SEN’s Sportsday.

“I think the boys need 50 to 80 games at least so I’m thinking to myself personally with the experience of being around footy for 50 years, I reckon the more 100-game players you’ve got out there or close to around 100 games, these young players are very early in their careers, and just remember, they didn’t even play the year before.

“I would like to think somewhere within two years we should be getting somewhere and knocking on the door of the top four.

“That’s only my personal belief, it’s not the club’s belief, but it’s a sincere belief that we don’t overrate this year, but we don’t underrate it also.”

The Bombers’ wait for a first finals win since 2004 extended this season after losing to the Western Bulldogs by 49 points in an Elimination Final.

Essendon currently holds picks 11, 51, 56 and 87 heading into this month’s National Draft.

 

– BY ALEX ZAIA/ SEN

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