It has been reported that Melbourne Demon fans are buying seats at Optus Stadium for the preliminary final with the West Coast Eagles with the intention of leaving those seats empty as a tactic to throw the Eagles off their game.
The theory behind the tactic is a sound one. That is, empty seats will mean less sound created by West Coast supporters.
We predicted that Hillary Clinton would soundly defeat Donald Trump in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election, so our degree of tone-deafness needs no explanation, but while we have no ill feelings towards the Dees, if we laid down our funds for tickets to the AFL Preliminary final, we would be in the seats.
Another scheme to negate the home ground advantage of West Coast would involve the streaming of live footage of Melbourne fans to Demons players as a way to show those players the support they have in Victoria’s Capital.
Part of the streaming plan would be to post video of rabid Demons’ supporters on the big screen at Optus Stadium during the run out, but it is hard to imagine West Coast acceding to that plot.
With the exception of Rounds 1, 14 and 22 in the Toyota 2018 AFL Premiership competition, no club beat the Eagles at Optus, but intriguingly, one of the three losses was to Melbourne in Round 22.
Sports numbers crunchers generally agree that home ground crowd noise is harder on the on the umpires than the opposition players.
Some person or persons deserve the nod for creativity, as this idea has not been thought of before now.
If it were to work, even if only slightly, would a club outside Victoria be permitted to do the same thing for a Grand Final at MCG?
The question would be rendered moot if West Coast does not advance, as Melbourne, Richmond and Collingwood supporters would be balanced in the Grand Final.
Our strategy for a Melbourne win in Perth involves the Dees scoring more points than the Eagles, but that is overly simplistic.