Even though the West Coast Eagles lost last week against the Swans, the margin wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be… So that’s still a win isn’t it?
I’m counting it! This week, the West Coast Eagles take on the Western Bulldogs at Etihad Stadium as they will be looking to steal their first win on the road for the season. The Eagles come into this round off a 29-point loss to the Sydney Swans at Optus Stadium. Buddy Franklin lead the way for the Swans with his eight goals, while Mark LeCras and Jack Darling stood out for the Eagles, finishing with three goals each. Nic Naitanui only played about half a game on his return to AFL footy however, he got straight back out there and played like he had never left!
The Western Bulldogs come into this game after a devastating 82-point defeat at the hands of the GWS Giants. That is painful, especially for round 1. They will be ready to redeem themselves on their home turf this week, and start a fresh. Lin Jong, Lukas Webb, Caleb Daniel and Ed Richards come into the squad this week, for injured Tom Liberatore and Hayden Crozier, and an omitted Fletcher Roberts.
Only one change for the West Coast Eagles this week, with the inclusion of Willie Rioli! It’s great to see him make his debut as he has been troubled with injury since arriving at West Coast. I remember when he first showed up at South Fremantle Football Club to play Colts in the WAFL, he was a bright spark back then and he will be a bright spark now for the Eagles and I think we will be seeing a lot more of him in the AFL.
Both teams are looking to bounce back from big losses this week. Bulldogs are going in as the favourites, I think one of the main reasons for that is the home ground advantage. If the Eagles can replicate the way they played last week, with Nic Nat given a bit more game time, I think they will be able to get over the line at Etihad.
I am tipping the West Coast Eagles to defeat the Western Bulldogs by 15 points!
Phot cred: @WestCoastEagles