Preview Round 18 vs Fremantle at Optus Stadium

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Bless

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Recent Form

Both teams come into this clash with playing some fairly disappointing football in recent times. Fremantle have slumped to four losses on the trot; including a convincing loss against Hawthorn in Tassie, a derby smashing, a last minute loss to Carlton at home and a last quarter fade out against Melbourne. These results coming into the game have completely derailed their finals hopes being 2 games out of the Top 8 with 6 games to play. In order to keep their slim mathematical chances alive they must win this game here. Sydney on the other hand, after consecutive disappointing close losses to Essendon at the MCG and Carlton at home now sit at 6-10 with the season done. At this point, they will just be hoping to recapture some form and confidence, and finish the season playing some good football to build upon going into preparations for next season.

Players To Watch

:freo: Nathan Fyfe

The Fremantle Dockers' star midfielder has had a good month individually despite the disappointing results from a team perspective. Last week against Hawthorn after a disastrous start left them 5 goals behind early, Fyfe single-handedly dragged the Dockers back into the contest with 3 goals in the third quarter. Historically, Fyfe does enjoy playing against the Swans as he finds a lot of the ball and between 2010-2015 he polled 13 Brownlow votes in 7 H/A games against the Swans. Even in the last two clashes where Sydney were dominant winners Fyfe gathered 28 disposals.

:sydney: Aliir Aliir

Since Callum Sinclair's injury against the Suns, for the past 3 weeks Aliir has needed to fill the role of the team's primary ruckman. He has performed admirably in an unfamiliar role where he used his agility to follow up on the ruck contest in order to win clearances and send the Swans forward. In the last three weeks he managed to get 20 Inside 50s and 19 clearances. While conceding hitouts was not so much of a factor against a below average ruck in Zac Clarke, Kruezer's influence allowed Carlton to dominate the clinches. With Sydney still struggling to score the past fortnight and Aliir's interceptions being missed, don't be surprised if Amartey or Knoll is brought in as ruck so that Aliir can be sent back to defence to offer interceptions and rebound.

Key Issues
  • Sydney's Small Forwards need to lift: Hayward and Ronke have both gone goalless in the past two weeks as the Swans went down by 2 goal margins. With Buddy not around, small forwards will be the primary avenue to goal so we need them to contribute goals in order to put up a winning score. Their recent form puts them at risk of missing selection so if they get another opportunity they will need to take it.
  • Fremantle's Inside 50 conversion: Fremantle have struggled with creating goal-scoring opportunities with their entries into the forward line. Last week against Hawthorn they only managed 13 scoring shots from 45 I50s, the week before only 21 from 60 (and only 2 goals). Their delivery will need to improve if they are to break their losing streak.

Tip

We're undefeated at Optus Stadium. Got a good recent record against Fremantle. It hasn't been evident the past couple weeks but this group is capable of some good football - I'll back them in. Blakey to have his clear breakout game with 4 goals as the Swans bounce back.

Sydney by 38

Get it done boys!
 
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S120

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Hoping for at least a couple of changes. Amartey has to come in, whether this is his ideal time to debut or not, we need someone to play in the ruck so Aliir can go back. Aliir would lose the hitouts substantially to Darcy/Lobb anyway and his clearances are hit and miss against skilled ruckmen, so we may as well have him down back where he's been so good this year.

Then I'd be getting rid of at least two of Hayward, Jack and Ronke. We just can't afford so little out of our smaller forwards. Quite possibly all three. I'd love to give Hayward a run somewhere else on the ground to free him up in seniors but I don't know he can fit anywhere else for now. It's got to be hard when you're not tall or that small but not big enough to get a lot of ball kicked to you like him. I'd send him back to reserves and tell him to just go out and ominate and enjoy himself for a few weeks. It all looks a bit of a dirge for him atm.

So I'd go Amartey in the ruck, Aliir down back. With Aliir down back, you don't need Dawson in defence so he moves up the field to a HF flank and drop Ronke. The other thing I'd love to see is Stoddart get rewarded for a consistent year and play at HB. With that Cunningham shifts up to a wing/HF and you drop Jack. Then Menzel comes in for Hayward. That requires a lot of change to the side, but we'd be a significantly better side than what were yesterday with that imo.
 

S120

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I can see Clarke getting a call up this week. Fremantle have some strong running wingmen and he's been in good form in the reserves.
 

The King!

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Jack should have been delisted/retired in 2017 so who knows

Buddy won’t play on this surface nor waste the 300 game marketing on an away game even if he were close

I think McVeigh will return and surely a ruck

If he picks fox to ruck, then he really has lost the plot
 

TheMase

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Season over, might be time to see if a few of the others have a future.

Amartey last few weeks in the NEAFL have been strong. I am not completely sold on him but worth seeing if it is worth persisting with him. It would allow Aliir to go back to defence. Perhaps for Jack. Dawson can push back up towards the wing.

Wicks should be able to be promoted due to Smiths injury, so might be worth seeing what he can offer perhaps for Ronke.
 

McRobie

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Jack, Ronke and Melican out all three were dreadful.
That can be Kizzas farewell he’s tarnishing his career at present.
Melican was patheitc imo and Ronke just no confidence.
 

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caesar88

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OUT - Ronke, Jack
IN - Amartey, Stoddart.

Honestly given we will probably be facing Sandilands in the ruck, it wouldn’t shock me one bit if Horse went with Aliir and Reid again.
 

TheMase

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OUT - Ronke, Jack
IN - Amartey, Stoddart.

Honestly given we will probably be facing Sandilands in the ruck, it wouldn’t shock me one bit if Horse went with Aliir and Reid again.
Haha you decided against Menzel (begrudgingly?). :p ;)

Amartey to ruck, Aliir to defence
Dawson and ? maybe Cunningham into the forward line?
 

caesar88

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Haha you decided against Menzel (begrudgingly?). :p ;)

Amartey to ruck, Aliir to defence
Dawson and ? maybe Cunningham into the forward line?
Yeah I’d been thinking it but then I remembered.. Menzel was poor last week. One good NEAFL showing should not equal a recall. So Hayward gets a very lucky reprieve.

Amartey rucks and Aliir goes to defence freeing up Dawson to play between the arcs where he looks best. I know that we’re losing two forwards and technically not replacing them (though Amartey can go forward), but Jack and Ronke had one possession inside 50 between them. Any makeshift moves we make, like sending a Dawson or Cunningham or Heeney will do better than getting the ball only once in the forward line.

Stoddart coming in also frees up those flexible types like Dawson and Cunningham out of being strictly in defence.

Either way Amartey and Stoddart are musts IMO, Amo because of our ruck situation and Stoddart because his form has warranted it.
 

TheMase

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Yeah I’d been thinking it but then I remembered.. Menzel was poor last week. One good NEAFL showing should not equal a recall. So Hayward gets a very lucky reprieve.

Amartey rucks and Aliir goes to defence freeing up Dawson to play between the arcs where he looks best. I know that we’re losing two forwards and technically not replacing them (though Amartey can go forward), but Jack and Ronke had one possession inside 50 between them. Any makeshift moves we make, like sending a Dawson or Cunningham or Heeney will do better than getting the ball only once in the forward line.

Stoddart coming in also frees up those flexible types like Dawson and Cunningham out of being strictly in defence.

Either way Amartey and Stoddart are musts IMO, Amo because of our ruck situation and Stoddart because his form has warranted it.
Well I’ve come around on Stoddart a bit, as we had a discussion sometime ago and I wasn’t so positive. Has had a number of impressive weeks so I’d be happy for him to come in, however imo he has to play half back.

I feel that he is best suited behind the ball. He actually seems to read the flight of the ball pretty well, when defending and he seems solid one on one too.
 

caesar88

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Well I’ve come around on Stoddart a bit, as we had a discussion sometime ago and I wasn’t so positive. Has had a number of impressive weeks so I’d be happy for him to come in, however imo he has to play half back.

I feel that he is best suited behind the ball. He actually seems to read the flight of the ball pretty well, when defending and he seems solid one on one too.
Agreed. If anything I think he is better defensively than he is when he’s attacking. But his pace off half back could be handy if he can translate it at senior level. Might be suited to the bigger ground at Optus anyway
 

alex4445

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Out: Hayward, Ronke, Jack
In: Knoll, Mclean, Mcveigh(provided fit)

Dont know if we can play both rookies but I would if possible.

Not getting anything of value from the 3 outs
Knoll rucks as much as possible otherwise goes to the bench
Mclean stays deep forward does not leave the forward 50 unless rucking
Mveigh fits in wherever
Allir stays back and Reid stays forward.
 
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