By Daniel Foley
Coburg could not match the undefeated Footscray Bulldogs in the Lions’ first home game of the 2021 VFL season, going down by 32 points at Highgate Recreation Reserve on Saturday. The Dogs won every quarter and slowly extended their lead to take a 13.6 (84) to 7.10 (52) victory.
Coburg weren’t able to create as many quality options inside forward 50, while the Dogs capitalised off turnovers, scoring multiple goals after the Lions turned the ball over. Coburg won the possession count and out marked Footscray (119 to 88) but had 10 less inside 50s.
Marcus Lentini was the highest possession getter on the ground, Lentini had 37 touches (15 kicks, 22 handballs) and was prolific once again in the midfield. Ryan Exon (28 disposals, 19 kicks) provided spark off half-back and ended the match with a game-high ten marks.
A Peter McEvoy goal cut Footscray’s lead to just nine points mid-way through the third term, but the Bulldogs went on to kick the next three majors to take a 26 point lead into the final quarter. Coburg’s two goals in the fourth quarter were not enough, Footscray’s third goal for the quarter in the 25th minute extended their lead to a game high 32 points.
In his first VFL game Dinny Cleary (eight tackles) laid the most tackles on the ground. He was given the role of tagging Bulldogs midfielder Patrick Lipinski, who had 28 touches with only nine of those possessions being kicks.
Sam Lowson and Peter McEvoy would be the only multiple goal scorers for the Lions with two goals apiece.
Coburg: 2.2 14 | 3.5 23| 5.7 37 | 7.10 (52)
Footscray: 4.1 25 | 6.1 31 | 10.3 63 | 13.6 (84)
Goals: Lowson 2, McEvoy 2, Gillard, Jepson, Podhajski