CARLTON 5.2 5.4 7.6 8.7 (55)
ADELAIDE 4.5 9.6 13.9 19.10 (124)
Adelaide has confirmed their position as premiership contenders, demolishing Carlton by 69 points at Etihad stadium.
There may have been concerns about the scoring ability of Adelaide with the loss of Taylor Walker but it proved to be no hurdle as the Crows kicked 15 goals to three after half time.
The win emerged from the midfield, Adelaide were able to monster the Carlton midfield gathering 28 more contested possessions, the likes of Patrick Dangerfield, Scott Thompson, and Rory Sloane were getting first hands on the ball and tearing open Carlton, the most damning stat was the Crow’s 58 points from stoppages compared to the Blues 16.
While their inside work was impressive their outside work was also of a high standard. The Crows’ excellent disposal and use of the corridor sliced through Carlton, the quick movement ensured that their forwards had plenty of space to work with.
Although Adelaide were impressive, Carlton were simply not up to scratch: many of their players did not perform leaving the work to a select few. They were unable to distribute the ball to their outside players and their usually high uncontested marks and possessions numbers were low.
Their situation was made worse with the loss of Marc Murphy to a suspected AC joint in a crunching clash with Dangerfeild during the second quarter. This left the Blues with even less midfield grunt which the Crows duly capitalised on.
The game began with a close opening quarter, momentum swinging back and fourth as the lead changed multiple times. Carlton looked as if they would trouble the Crow’s defence as four of their five goals came from marks inside 50. However Adelaide were showing signs of what was to come, their quick and accurate ball movement was breaking down Carlton’s zone at the kickout and resulted in two end to end goals.
Just as they had done in the previous week against Geelong, Adelaide chose the second quarter to blow Carlton out of the water. They took it to the next level in all the key areas including contested ball, run and carry and tackling preassure. Carlton could not find a way forward and were left goaless as the Crows piled on five.
After half time the situation got worse for the Blues; they had now lost Murphy and were falling further behind. Adelaide continued their dominance at the contest and were able to find multiple targets up forward, mature age recruit Ian Callinan kicked two for the quarter.
In the last five minutes Carlton made a desperate push but the Crows found Josh Jenkins on the counterattack, he was able to take a bounce, run to 50 and kick the goal increasing the lead to 40 points.
In the final quarter Adelaide had its way with Carlton, they kicked six goals to one and were able to stream through the corridor at will and deliver the ball to the forwards on a silver plate. Kurt Tippett was the main benificiary kicking the last three goals after being kept quiet all game. By the end Carlton looked like a team that had been broken.
The best on field was clearly Dangerfield, he had one of the best performances of his career collecting 35 disposals, 19 contested, eight clearances and two goals. His hardness around the ball and explosiveness away from the contest was simply brilliant. He was supported by Thompson who was at his usual best racking up 31 disposals and 10 clearances.
They were joined by the likes of Rory Sloan and Nathan Van Berlo who also contributed in the midfield, Van Berlo was able to keep Murphy quiet before he was subbed off and create pressure with nine tackles. Sam Jacobs was also great against his old club, dominating the ruck with 38 hitouts, his taps gave the midfield an even bigger advantage.
For Carlton there were not many that could say they performed acceptably. Chris Judd was his usual ever reliable self, he was the only midfielder that took it up to the Crows with 24 disposals, seven clearances and eight tackles. Heath Scotland could also hold his head high, he gathered 33 disposals and was great off the half back trying to launch Carlton’s attacks.
Carlton have a lot to turn around for next week, luckily they face Melbourne and should not face the prospect of three losses in a row. As for Adelaide they have another big challenge when they head home to tackle a Collingwood team that has won its last five.
1) Patrick Dangerfield
2) Scott Thompson
3) Nathan Van Berlo
Carlton: Garlett 3, Simpson 2, Thornton, Henderson, Kreuzer
Adelaide: Callinan 3, Vince 3, Tippett 3, Mackay 2, Jenkins 2, Dangerfield 2, van Berlo, Thompson, Porplyzia, Petrenko
Carlton: Scotland, Judd, Ellard, Jamison, Walker
Adelaide: Dangerfield, Thompson, Sloane, van Berlo, Callinan, Jacobs
Carlton: Murphy (shoulder/AC joint), Henderson (groin), Duigan (soreness)
Adelaide: Mackay (corked back)
Carlton: Marc Murphy (shoulder/AC joint) replaced by Chris Yarran at half-time
Adelaide: David Mackay (back) replaced by Tom Lynch at three-quarter time