I have got fingers crossed that this game is better to watch then the Eagles game of last week. The good news is that it surely couldnt get any worse then last weeks performance.
After a week in the spotlight over their technique in evading tackles, you can be sure that the eyes of the AFL world will be on them, and the team as a whole need to step up and prove that there is nothing illegal or untoward about their free kick count.
This should be another simple win for the Eagles, but by no means should they go into the game with a sense of complacency. The Tigers have a number of players who can hurt a team. Brett Deledio, Dustin Martin and Trent Cotchin can all have a massive impact on the game if they are left unattended for even a few seconds, and forward pair Robin Nahas and Jack Riewoldt are always going to be dangerous if they get the ball anywhere near the forward line.
There are a number of improvements that the Eagles can make from their game last week. Excluding the obvious points of improving their ball disposal efficiency, they need to concentrate on goal accuracy. Their conversion on Saturday was attrocious and no amount of poor weather can excuse a 5 goal, 21 point game. Their accuracy hasnt been all that flash in previous weeks either, scoring 16 and 12 points in their round 2 and 3 matches. They can’t simply rely on the same few players to provide the scores because when they come up against a good defensive team who can shut these players out, their scoring could dry up completely.
As I said earlier, if they can go into the game as ferocious as they have in the first few rounds on concentrate on doing the practiced thing around goal instead of trying to be too cute, I don’t see how Richmond can come up and win.
My prediction: Eagles by 31.