Not sure about Port this year. I have a sneaking suspicion they won't do as well as last year.
What was their injury run like last year?
Agree, been saying that all summer. They fall behind in a lot of games but come home like a steam train. If you ended their games at 3 quarter time, they would be about mid table.
The problem with that is as we've seen so many times before, the sides that have a fitness edge on opposition usually only have the edge for a year or 2 before the other sides catch up. I think other teams will have caught up to their edge in running / fitness, so they will have to win games now by being more polished than opponents and not relying on their superior fitness. If they had the edge in polish or class in previous years they would have been in front at 3 quarter time a lot more and they still haven't claimed a top 4 Home & Away spot as yet with this group. Will come back to the pack this year or at the latest next year.
Heard Ross Lyon say that Freo have added one extra running session to their training loads in order to keep up with the demands, and I dare say other clubs may have followed suit. So if other sides have caught up to Port in that regard, than that advantage (or perceived advantage) is gone.
Pretty much what all commentators are saying.
On Paddy, we offered up the excuse that our players had no preseason to prepare and that they are short a gallop, well so is Paddy. His first two games haven't been great but he is not match fit, not used to the team structure & game plan and not used to playing with this group. He will take some time to adjust. By midway through the season we shall see whether he remains slightly useless or whether he improves. I think it is a bit early to jump on the chance to bag Paddy over his performances.