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Goddard talks up Essendon's AFL talent
Roger Vaughan
16:36 AEST Mon Nov 12 2012

Boom Essendon recruit Brendon Goddard has highlighted their talent as a major reason why he switched AFL clubs.

The 27-year-old was the biggest name in the league's trade period last month, using the new free agency provision to leave St Kilda after 205 games.

Saints coach Scott Watters said at the time that the two-time All-Australian made a decision outside their team-first structure and added it was about money.

But the utility told the Essendon website he saw a lot of upside in the Essendon list.

The Bombers plummeted out of the top eight in the second half of this season to finish 11th.

"I see the talent within the group and where they could go - that's obviously something that did appeal," he said.

"Obviously staying in Melbourne was one thing as well.

"Just the club ... what I can offer the footy club as a footballer and what the footy club can offer me as a person, summing up all that up, I thought Essendon was a really good choice."

It is the first time Goddard has spoken publicly since his high-profile move.

He is in Boulder, Colorado with several of his new team-mates for high-altitude training.

Another factor that enticed Goddard to Essendon is the certainty that he will spend more time in the midfield.

Goddard had more of a utility role at the Saints.

The Bombers badly need more midfield support for captain and Brownlow Medallist Jobe Watson.

"That was something obviously that stood out and was appealing," Goddard said.

"I'd like to play more in the midfield permanently, as an inside `mid'."

But Goddard stressed that he alone will not be responsible for the Bombers returning to the top eight - it will take the whole team's development.

"By no means am I here to be the saviour," he said.

Goddard said he is also prepared to have a greater leadership role at Essendon.

"I always look forward to that with open arms," he said.

"I don't have trouble with giving feedback and stuff like that.

"I can be quite narky at times, as a lot of people might know.

"At the end of the day, it's all about trying to get better."

He added defence was one area where the Bombers had room for improvement.

Ross Lyon, Watters' predecessor at St Kilda, made defence the focus for Goddard and his old team-mates when they nearly won the premiership in 2009-10.

"All guys get drafted because of their potential with the footy," Goddard said.

"The defensive side of the game is all about your attitude and about training ... and then obviously implementing it in a game.

"With this group, the biggest upside is the defensive side of the game.

"A lot of games are decided by two or three kicks and if you can kick two-five more goals just through turnovers in defence, it's going to go a long way to winning more games and playing in finals."


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