ECHUCA United coach Guy Campbell was right about the weekend’s game against Deniliquin.
In last Monday’s Riv he said the Rams were getting close to a win.
After defeating Shepparton East and looking forward to the weekend’s game, Campbell said: ‘‘It’s sad to see a club like Deni in the state they are, but they’re getting close to a win.’’
Oh, how right you were Guy.
United lost by 16 points to the Rams — a side which had not won a single match this year until Saturday — on a day United’s past players came together to celebrate the club’s success.
It is Deni’s first victory in 11 months, and ended a hot four-game streak by United, which was starting to claw its way up the Murray Football League ladder.
Campbell yesterday made no bones about his team’s performance, and said it should have been a ‘‘percentage and confidence booster’’.
Instead he will be culling the players who ‘‘didn’t turn up’’ to play their role for the club, instead looking to the reserves ahead of the coming Finley away match in an attempt to turn the tide.
‘‘We had 22 players at the start of the game, and five or six didn’t turn up and play their role at all. Some played half a role, and some did everything but play their role,’’ a disappointed Campbell told the Riv.
He admitted coming off the back of four wins against Tungamah, Shepparton East, Tongala and Congupna, a loss to cellar dwellers the Rams, was unacceptable.
‘‘You have just completed four straight wins, you are playing the bottom side and knowing what the outcome should be, but not putting the processes in play to get the result.
‘‘The processes went out the window and that’s that. When the blokes choose not to play their role that’s what happens,’’ he said.
A redeeming factor ahead of the Finley game on Saturday is the return of up to six key players.
Jordan Florance, Farran Priest, Nathan Bottomley, Sam Toulmin, Dean Moon and Leigh Sobotnicki have all been sidelined with injuries of late, and are likely ins for the match.
Campbell confirmed the knee injury suffered by key player Zach Mihocek against Tongala will most likely be a long-term recovery, meaning he will not be back ‘‘in the near future’’.
‘‘If the wheels have fallen off somewhere there’s no point in leaving them on now, so come Tuesday (at training) we want to see who wants to play for the team.
‘‘Whether we can sort that out in a week we’ll see, but we had blokes in that side who have played in the reserves and did a good job on the weekend, but they just didn’t have the backing of the rest of the group,’’ Campbell said.
He said the great thing about footy is the chance for teams to put a bad result behind them and redeem themselves against tough opposition like Finley.
‘‘Come Tuesday we’ll get rid of all the thoughts from the game. We can have an ordinary Saturday like that and get the chance for a turn-around quick smart for Saturday.
‘‘I certainly made it known that things like that (the loss) can’t happen. That team that was out there was capable, they just didn’t get it done,’’ he said.