Mick McGuane has crunched the stats, added some conservative thinking and proved he is an unbiased commentator, leaving Collingwood out of the 8.
As to Essendon, he says the biggest challenge is we have to work on our team defence. 3rd in attack and 12th in defence in 2017 needs to improve./
MICK MCGUANE REVEALS HIS 2018 TOP 8
Collingwood premiership player Mick McGuane has named his 2018 top eight, with the runner-ups finishing first and a bolter into the top four.
Despite losing the Grand Final, McGuane reckons the Crows are the team to beat in the home-and-away series, while after a poor start last season, he believes the Swans will climb again. Meanwhile, he expects a long finals drought to be broken for a traditional Victorian team.
The Cats, Tigers, Power, Giants, and Bombers also get a run, but not in the spots some would expect.
View Mick’s full top eight below:
Greater Western Sydney
Some might think the impact of Smith, Saad , and Stringer will decide whether we compete for the bottom couple spots in the 8 or climb higher.
I believe the success of McGrath in the middle, Parish’s ability to step up further, and the improvement of Langford/Laverde/,and the evolution of McKenna is just as pivotal to our chance of finals success.
Our midfield is maye the worst in the comp. if Parish and McGrath take big steps forward, if Langford comes on, if we get solid contributions from someone like Mitch and if Smith and Stringer make a big impact, then the sky’s the limit. If not, we’ll miss the 8.
Sometimes ladder positions can be a bit misleading. 2016 the Dogs finished 7th but won 15 games. Last year 15 games was good enough for 3rd. Will be interesting to see where 15 wins gets you in 2018. That should be our aim, if you won over two-thirds of your games in a season, you’re a good team in my book and with even luck with injury and timing your run at the right time, you can go all the way.
Im not expecting much from The Landford.
but McGrath and Parish should improve, and more midfield time will at least improve our chasing ability and pressuring through the midfield.
Saad - takes pressure of McKenna who can be tagged out of games if opposition put some effort into him. I’d actually like to see McKenna progress to a wing where we can see more running bounces and kicking goals.
Stringer - if plays some midfield takes pressure off Parish and McGrath to a extent as opposition will try to stop him.
And up forward Stringer should get the third best tall defender. where he probably got the best defender at the dogs.
Smith Im not sure of his role, it may be to the detriment/ loss of Colyer. But I would love to see a fit and firing Colyer. And hope Smith can spend more time in midfield but also be a handy forward. He probably just adds more versatility and scoring power.
ruckman - Belly/Daniher will be key players for me. if they can give our mids first possession it will be important.
Midfield is still cooked, I don’t see us progressing any further with Watson retiring, Goddard a year older, Myers officially cooked, Parish/McGrath still to young and Bringing in forwards/backs Stringer, Smith and Saad doesn’t solve our midfield woes.
Our great hope is that the laconic Langford will somehow fix our midfield woes.
Just like the past 10 years (except for maybe 2013) I just don’t see it in 2018.