Melbourne coach Simon Goodwin has labelled his AFL side easy to play against after St Kilda landed the latest blow to their faltering season with an inspired 40-point win.
The Demons' self-styled ballistic football that took them to a preliminary final last year was nowhere in evidence at the MCG on Saturday as the Saints made their more-fancied opponents look ordinary at times in a 15.5 (95) to 7.13 (55) win.
It was another frustratingly uneven performance from Melbourne who most had tabbed a legitimate premiership challenger.
But they're in a hole at 1-4 with four days to prepare for their Anzac Day eve clash with Richmond.
Goodwin offered a damning assessment of his underperforming charges.
"We're easy to play against," coach Simon Goodwin said bluntly.
"We're getting beaten in transition way too easily and we're not connecting with the ball forward of centre.
"There are a lot of little things going wrong in our game at the moment.
"We're breaking down in a few too many areas and the scoreboard pressure builds.
"In the end I thought the Saints' hunger and work rate in the second half was well above ours.
"That's the disappointing thing for us."
The Demons led by three points early in the second quarter but the slick Saints piled on eight unanswered goals to lead by 45 points at three-quarter time.
Perhaps most disappointing was the apparent lack of energy and enthusiasm on show a week after a stirring breakthrough win over Sydney that was supposed to kickstart Melbourne's campaign.
Misfiring forward Tom McDonald, who received Bronx cheers from the home crowd after taking a mark late in the game, went goalless for the third time this season.
With just two goals in five games, his struggles have mirrored his team's.
"We put him on the wing for a while ... we're trying to get him going," Goodwin said.
"He's just not marking the ball like he was so that's his great challenge: to mark the ball and be a real presence for us.
"We'll keep persevering with him forward. He's played the best footy of his career as a forward, so we'll keep working with him.
"We're five weeks in."
Australian Associated Press