Scoreboard nourishment

“We just don’t get the scoreboard nourishment that other teams are getting.” St Kilda coach Brett Ratten. The Age 27/4/21


Scoreboard nourishment?

When Les Everett and I started this little archive of scoreboards about a decade ago we chose the deliberately ambiguous title of ‘Scoreboard Pressure’.

On the one hand it was a dig at one of the most common euphemistic phrases of modern footy jargon – an obfuscation to get around a coach saying “Well, we were not good enough. We couldn’t kick enough goals. They were better than us.”  There was a sense of trying to save face by saying “We needed to create more scoreboard pressure.” Mumbo-jumbo really.

On the other hand, the phrase was a nod to anyone who has actually had to work a scoreboard, to keep up with the game and the scores and the rusty nails and the tin numbers and the weather and the advancements in technology that may render them obsolete on a Saturday afternoon.

Now, along comes St Kilda coach Brett Ratten with the phrase ‘scoreboard nourishment’.

When I parked myself in the tin shed scoreboard at Williamstown from 2008 to 2014 my nourishment was an apple, a banana, a muesli bar and maybe a peanut butter sandwich.

There was another form of nourishment – watching the game from a different point of view.

And another – an interest in scoreboards that led to this website. (Well, a bloke’s gotta have a hobby.)

But I don’t think Ratten was thinking like that. He was using a roundabout way of saying “We’re in strife. We’re crap.”

One mate of mine reckons that what Ratten meant to say was: “My inability to communicate in plain English means that unfortunately the players have no idea what I’m talking about. So, we’re rooted.”

Another mate simply said “What a load of baloney!”

Les surmised: “Ratten’s just trying to avoid the surcharge.”

Tucked away on this website is a section called Sundries, where we have lots of examples of coaches and captains and commentators using the phrase ‘scoreboard pressure’. To that Sundries page we now add Ratten’s gem.

Meanwhile, Les and I ponder if this site should now be called

(Ratten  also said “Our inability to score, which was a great strength of ours from an accuracy and potency point of view has dried up…”, but maybe an overworked underpaid sub-editor had a minor lapse there.)

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