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  1. #1
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    Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    https://www.theage.com.au/sport/afl/...?crpt=homepage

    Western Bulldogs midfield duo Tom Liberatore and Mitch Wallis are close to re-committing to the club.

    Wallis' future has been the subject of intense speculation with the 25-year-old receiving tempting offers from rival sides including Essendon and the Brisbane Lions, while Liberatore has spent the last year of his contract in 2018 recovering from a ruptured ACL he sustained in round one.

    The Age understands the pair, who were taken with father-son selections in the 2010 national draft, will soon sign on with the Western Bulldogs with contract terms being finalised. Their commitment represents a significant boost for the fledgling side's midfield stocks.

    Liberatore, 25, was one of the best clearance players in the AFL from 2012-16 before a drop in form in 2017. He was crucial in the Bulldogs' 2016 premiership. He enjoyed a strong and uninterrupted pre-season to the 2018 campaign and was understood to be back to his physical peak before being cruelly struck down in round one.

    His teammate Wallis was controversially dropped twice in 2018 which fuelled speculation about his future at the Whitten Oval. However later in the season coach Luke Beveridge revealed the club had offered Wallis a contract.
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    "There is [an offer in front of Wallis], so we're just working through that with his management," Beveridge said in early August.

    "Mitch Wallis is a prime example of a player we've had some conversations around what's going to improve him as a player, and we know how capable he can be."

    It's understood those improvements were around the defensive side of his game.

    Wallis played the last 10 games of the season spending time in the midfield and forward. He kicked 15 goals in that stretch (20 for the season) including bags of three against Hawthorn and Melbourne.

    Once they sign the dotted line they will join Roarke Smith and Dale Morris in re-committing to the club after season's end.

    It is all but assured that Luke Dahlhaus will depart the Bulldogs for Geelong, who are offering the midfielder a better contract. He will likely be followed by Jack Redpath and Jordan Roughead, whose destinations are unknown.

    Billy Gowers and Tory Dickson are expected to stay however, while the futures of Lin Jong, Brad Lynch and Tom Campbell remain unclear.

    Mitch Wallis played the last 10 games of the season and was important in the Bulldogs' upturn in form.
    Mitch Wallis played the last 10 games of the season and was important in the Bulldogs' upturn in form.
    After a tough 2017 and a difficult start to 2018 the Bulldogs came home in impressive fashion, winning three of their last four games and losing narrowly to Richmond at the MCG.

    Beveridge was able to regain more experienced players through that stronger period with the sides he fielded through 2018 regularly the youngest in the competition.

    The late-season purple patch came on the back of sterling displays by their classier players such as Marcus Bontempelli, Lachie Hunter, Caleb Daniel, Jack Macrae, Josh Dunkley and Jason Johannisen. Morris' return from injury was also vital.

    They were aided by significant contributions from youngsters Gowers, Patrick Lipinski, Aaron Naughton and Ed Richards.

    With Liam Picken set to attempt to return from concussion complications in 2019, added to the return of Liberatore and hopefully Tom Boyd, the Bulldogs will head into their next campaign with an optimism that seemed unlikely in the first half of 2018.
    I wept from seeing greatness. Bontempelli was Royce Hart at his best, full of grace, intertwining his ballet seamlessly into a game of football.

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  3. #2
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Meanwhile, Jordan Roughead has headed to Perth to meet with the Eagles.
    Footscray member since 1980.

  4. #3
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    I'm happy to call this one as being accurate so it will be great to get this news confirmed by the club in the next few days.
    Both Liberatore and Wallis are important to this club and getting their commitments is very much a good news story.
    Tough times don't last, tough people do

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  6. #4
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Probably the two I and most others were most hoping to see sign who didn't have a contract. Good news.

    Interesting to see it was supposedly the defensive side of Wallis' game that needed improvement and not versatility/forward craft as most of us here assumed.

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  8. #5
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Quote Originally Posted by hujsh View Post

    Interesting to see it was supposedly the defensive side of Wallis' game that needed improvement and not versatility/forward craft as most of us here assumed.
    His defensive game is still pretty poor. I'm a critic of Mitch's so might not be a fair judge, but he is extremely poor at tracking back when the opposition have the ball in transition or from a stoppage... he just seems to get lost.

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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Quote Originally Posted by Mantis View Post
    His defensive game is still pretty poor. I'm a critic of Mitch's so might not be a fair judge, but he is extremely poor at tracking back when the opposition have the ball in transition or from a stoppage... he just seems to get lost.
    Interesting. It's something I often struggle to notice in the heat of the game so I tend to rely on the analysis of those here.

  11. #7
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    I like him up forward he is pretty reliable shot at goal , presents well for his height and I think is great in the forward line with pressure.
    Bring back the biff

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  13. #8
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Very happy to have them both at the club...looking fwd to it being 100% confirmed by the club.
    I will never see #16 the same!!

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  15. #9
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Quote Originally Posted by Mantis View Post
    His defensive game is still pretty poor. I'm a critic of Mitch's so might not be a fair judge, but he is extremely poor at tracking back when the opposition have the ball in transition or from a stoppage... he just seems to get lost.
    Yeah Ive noticed that too. It's not that he is lazy, he looks confused when they have it and unsure of what to do. Like you say he gets a bit lost and gets caught out ball watching when he should have an opponent or some space to guard.
    AFLW Premiers 2018




    After speaking to Obie for about fourty-five minutes on the telephone we
    Finally arrived at the truth of the matter and said that we had to go down
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    Police officer's station. So we got in the red vw microbus with the
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    Now friends, there was only one or two things that Obie coulda done at
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    Both immediately arrested. Handcuffed. And I said "Obie, I don't think I
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  16. #10
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Great news. Hoping Libba has a great 2019 and Wallis gets better as well.
    AFL PREMIERS 2016

  17. #11
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Yes potentially fantastic news

    Id always back Wallis to find a way to improve

    Libba is a real talent when focused

  18. #12
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Quote Originally Posted by Mantis View Post
    His defensive game is still pretty poor. I'm a critic of Mitch's so might not be a fair judge, but he is extremely poor at tracking back when the opposition have the ball in transition or from a stoppage... he just seems to get lost.
    Yep. I like him in F50 where his assets are best deployed and his weaknesses are minimised. In the midfield his lack of defensive spread can get exposed by decent opposition mids.

    With Clay, Picko and Dickson all either having huge injury clouds or gone, Wallis has been the perfect reinforcement in this area, and it's a credit to him that he added strings to his bow that otherwise didn't previously exist. To kick 20 goals in basically half a season is an excellent return.
    "You've got no fear of The Underdog, that's why you will not survive"
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  19. #13
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    Re: Still sons of the west: Mitch Wallis and Tom Liberatore to sign on

    Quote Originally Posted by Sedat View Post
    Yep. I like him in F50 where his assets are best deployed and his weaknesses are minimised. In the midfield his lack of defensive spread can get exposed by decent opposition mids.

    With Clay, Picko and Dickson all either having huge injury clouds or gone, Wallis has been the perfect reinforcement in this area, and it's a credit to him that he added strings to his bow that otherwise didn't previously exist. To kick 20 goals in basically half a season is an excellent return.
    It was 20 goals and not many behinds too IIRC. Straight shooters for goal is another skill we desperately need.
    AFLW Premiers 2018




    After speaking to Obie for about fourty-five minutes on the telephone we
    Finally arrived at the truth of the matter and said that we had to go down
    And pick up the garbage, and also had to go down and speak to him at the
    Police officer's station. So we got in the red vw microbus with the
    Shovels and rakes and implements of destruction and headed on toward the
    Police officer's station.

    Now friends, there was only one or two things that Obie coulda done at
    The police station, and the first was he could have given us a medal for
    Being so brave and honest on the telephone, which wasn't very likely, and
    We didn't expect it, and the other thing was he could have bawled us out
    And told us never to be seen driving garbage around the vicinity again,
    Which is what we expected, but when we got to the police officer's station
    There was a third possibility that we hadn't even counted upon, and we was
    Both immediately arrested. Handcuffed. And I said "Obie, I don't think I
    Can pick up the garbage with these handcuffs on. " He said, "Shut up, kid.
    Get in the back of the patrol car. "




    Arlo Guthrie

    WOOF NUMBER 6

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