David Schwarz savages Simon Goodwin over post-match claim about Melbourne Demons

The backlash comes after another disappointing defeat for an out-of-sorts Melbourne.

Melbourne Demons great David Schwarz has taken a sledgehammer to his beloved club and coach Simon Goodwin after their latest disappointing defeat in the AFL. The Demons crashed to their fourth loss in five games after a 38-point loss to Collingwood in the King’s Birthday fixture on Monday but it was the manner of the defeat and Goodwin's response to the performance that really rankled Schwarz.

The Demons were hoping to bounce back from a trouncing against Fremantle the week before, but they coughed up another display littered with turnovers. Melbourne were beaten in clearances 39-29 and centre clearances 14-6 and their forward line was once again found wanting. Collingwood had just three more inside 50s than Melbourne for the entire game but were able to boot eight more goals than their opponents.

On the left is Melbourne Demons great David Schwarz and coach Simon Goodwin on the right.
Melbourne Demons great David Schwarz is sick of hearing the excuses from coach Simon Goodwin amid a worrying form slump for his beloved AFL club. Pic: Getty

The Demons rank 12th for goals per inside 50s in 2024 and on Monday were guilty of squandering numerous goal-scoring opportunities after kicking a whopping 15 behinds, compared to just six majors. It's been a common theme for Goodwin's men but the Demons coach was not ready to hit the panic button after the game. Goodwin described it as "a little patch" his side was going through and insisted they would sort it out.

But Schwarz - who played 12 seasons for the Demons in the AFL and was the club's best and fairest in 1999 - wasn't copping that explanation from Goodwin. He said the output from Melbourne's forwards has been an area of concern for quite some time and the club has done very little to address one of the team's biggest weaknesses.

“I can honestly say, I’ve never been more disappointed,” Schwarz told SEN WA Breakfast about Monday's loss to Collingwood. “What a load of crap. Three years this bullcrap has been happening in trying to find a forward line... the coaches have to take responsibility.

“This isn’t a patch. This is a systematic breakdown of the most important part of your game, which is your forward line. They haven’t been able to address it and it doesn’t matter how many good performances you put in like against St Kilda (in Round 11), it’s just not good enough. For a club that has got... a good midfield, a good backline and they haven’t been able to address their forward line, (it's not acceptable).

Since winning the 2021 premiership, Melbourne have finished in the top four in consecutive seasons but have been bundled out of the AFL finals in straight sets on both occasions. And Schwarz says Goodwin, his coaching staff and the Demons' recruitment team need to take responsibility for their shortcomings.

Seen here, Melbourne Demons AFL coach Simon Goodwin.
Melbourne Demons coach Simon Goodwin is under pressure to turn things around after a fourth loss in five games for the AFL club. Pic: Getty

“No matter what spin Simon Goodwin puts on it, it lays with him," Schwarz added. "It lays with him and his selection committee that they have not been able to recruit, develop and identify a forward line that is going to be comparable... to a side that is playing for a top eight, top four position. It’s just not good enough... We go inside 50 as much as anyone... the way we go in, it’s like we’re drunk... they’ll probably fall into the eight, but their season is done, they can’t recover from this.”

The Demons' woes have been compounded by an injury to Christian Petracca that left the midfield gun in hospital after he copped a knee to the ribs by Collingwood skipper Darcy Moore in a marking contest just before quarter-time. He played in the second quarter in discomfort but was substituted ahead of the third term, and it was revealed on Tuesday that Petracca suffered four broken ribs, lacerations to the spleen and a small puncture in his lung.


The 28-year-old was transferred to hospital by ambulance during the game. "Obviously, Christian's health is the No.1 priority for us at the moment," Melbourne football boss Alan Richardson said in a statement. "The next few weeks will be crucial, and we'll be monitoring his progress closely to make sure he heals properly and fully.

"As his recovery progresses, we will look towards a return to play timeline. He's obviously an extremely important player for the team, but his health and recovery are our top priorities right now."

with AAP