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The veteran Cat who has “to have a big hard look” at his role over summer


Brownlow Medallist Gerard Healy has given his review of Geelong’s 2021 season.

The ageing Cats once again fell short near the final hurdle, finishing third before running into the Melbourne buzzsaw in the prelim.

Healy believes Geelong needs to make changes to their game plan, given their slower and more defensive style hasn’t ultimately taken them to the top.

“It’s unfortunate for the Cats that they haven’t been able to win one since Patrick Dangerfield arrived there,” Healy told Sportsday.

“They’ve been so close, they’ve just come up against super teams all the time and I suspect in the next year or two we may be talking about Melbourne as being a super team, so it’s no real embarrassment to get a thrashing from the Demons.

“The issue is, can they win the flag? They’re going to be close again, but can they get across the line?

“A few things have to go right. They can’t keep bowling up the same stuff and expect a different result.

“We look forward to seeing a new iteration of the Cats under Chris Scott and it won’t be a radical change, but it has to change somewhere.”

Healy adds that Geelong needs to find a role for veteran midfielder Shaun Higgins, after he struggled across 2021.

“The negative for me was the lack of form of Shaun Higgins,” he said.

“I think he was okay, but they just haven’t been able to find a spot for him.

“He also has got to have a big hard look at what he’s doing, how he’s doing it and somehow in conjunction with Chris, find a way that he can produce A-grade stuff that contributes to their winning of finals.”

On the positive side, the breakout of defender Jack Henry caught Healy’s eye.

“You’d just have to say he’s one of the finer young defenders coming through,” he said.

“I think the Cats could look at him as a mainstay for the next decade and looks like a genuine player.

“He’s a really good player. That’s the positive for the Cats.”

Henry finished second in the club’s best and fairest, only two votes behind Tom Stewart.

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