Blues now more even, says coach Ratten - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Blues now more even, says coach Ratten

By Robert Grant 18/06/2008 04:10:49 PM Comments (0)

Carlton coach Brett Ratten is convinced the flaws the Blues displayed against Essendon last time the two sides met won't be a problem at the MCG on Sunday.

The major fault in the Blues' 16-point loss in round three was an uneven contribution from the team.

Ratten said a handful of players kept the side afloat while the rest did little.

Brendan Fevola kicked eight goals in the high-scoring loss, while skipper Chris Judd amassed 32 disposals.

Now, with Carlton's confidence-boosting victory over Collingwood last week behind them, the mindset has changed.

"I think that we're getting an even spread across the board, sharing the load," said Ratten.

"Last time we had six outstanding players on the ground and then we got virtually nothing from the rest of the group.

"When you looked at Essendon's performance, they played very well but they had an even spread across the board, everyone chiming in.

"So that was our challenge, to fix that and I think we have to a degree, but I think it was the way we played against Essendon and the manner that we went about it was very disappointing for me."

While there is now a more even contribution, Ratten said the improvement made it harder to blood new players.

"That's a tough one," he said.

"We need to get games into our younger-type players to give them experience.

"It's hard if you've got players who are playing well in certain positions, I think it makes it even tougher.

"So that's been the pleasing aspect as we go along.

"Maybe earlier in the year we might have given some free games away to players to get that experience but now you've really got to earn your stripes to get into this team.

"That's what we need, that's what the successful teams have had, the Geelongs and Hawthorns and the teams that have been in the finals year in year out."

While the Blues are now in the top eight Ratten is still mindful that the players' minds need to be kept focused each week.

"Does complacency set in in a group? That's our challenge to make sure our boys are switched on and focused.

"And why have we got ourselves into the eight? It's because we've done certain things and put aspects into our game.

"But as quick as we got into the eight is as quick as we can fall out too if we don't play the way that we need to play," he said.

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