West Coast and Fremantle will clash for the second time this year when they meet at Patersons Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Western Derby should provide a thrilling contest in which a win is essential for both teams.
While the rivalry between the two teams will bring out the usual ferocity at the ball, the four points that are on the line will play a much more significant role.
West Coast are one game out of the top four and are looking on the decline as their long injury list begins to take a toll. A win would keep them in touch with the second chance but a loss will make that task almost impossible.
This game is of equal importance to Fremantle who sit out of the eight on percentage. Winning their last four games has thrown them back into contention, however with the race so close this year dropping this game may be the difference between playing finals and not.
When they met earlier in the season the Eagles won by 48 points and dominated the Dockers. It was in that game where Ross Lyon began to really feel the heat in relation to his under performing game plan. However the Dockers seem to have adjusted and should put up more of a fight this time around.
Players To Watch
While his first game back wasn’t a revelation, Waters showed last week in his second how good of a player he really is. When Waters is left free he is one of the best at getting to marking contests and killing them either through a spoil or a mark. If the Dockers leave him unopposed the will struggle to find a target up forward.
Fyfe returned from his shoulder injury last week and did not miss a beat, with the most possessions of any Docker on the ground. When he is playing Fremantle are a better team and he will play an important role on Saturday. He will most likely have to do so under the tag of someone like Scott Selwood.
This game has all the hallmarks of another great Derby, both teams are playing a top eight standard football and are desperate for the 4 points. The Eagles have their backs against the wall with injuries and the Dockers will be looking for revenge.
Despite all this the game will come down to Fremantle’s ability to score. Ross Lyon’s game plan should keep them in the contest they just need to kick a winning score. However the Eagles class will be too much and they will be able to restrict Fremantle and replicate the scenes from earlier in the year.
West Coast by 24