Free-falling Crows still contenders - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Free-falling Crows still contenders

By Daniel Brettig 21/07/2008 04:28:47 PM Comments (0)

Adelaide's players are bullish as ever about their chances of playing AFL finals - much more so than their coach Neil Craig.

After the Crows' loss on Sunday to Port Adelaide, which tipped them out of the top eight for the first time since round one and also gave them five consecutive defeats, Craig conceded his side was not finals worthy.

According to Craig they lack the consistency and intensity required to stay afloat in a final.

It was particularly puzzling to Craig that Adelaide's players lacked the sheer desperation shown by Port in a game worth much more to the Crows than their opponents.

However, on Monday young tall Brad Moran declared the Crows were still gunning for a top eight spot and was convinced they would start their run to a fruitful September by beating Sydney at the SCG this week.

"I think we can be one of the best contenders in the league, it's just about being positive now, getting back on the horse and trying to get a win," Moran said.

"It's a mentality thing, I think that if one guy does it around the team it lifts everyone else to get involved and body language says a lot - it's about a fierce mind I think.

"We'll start this week and prepare for Sydney, at home they're generally strong but we have a good record against them.

"I think that's going to be the turning point where if we get a win this week then it will be possible to win four out of the next six."

The Crows, for several years a benchmark for sustained effort, have developed an alarmingly streaky element to their football in recent weeks.

As in the second term against Port they have looked world beaters for a time, but invariably become mild-mannered and second to the ball when it matters most.

Also vexing for Adelaide is the lack of attacking flair on show in the absence of injured goalkicking duo Brett Burton and Jason Porplyzia, meaning they will struggle to win games unless their midfield dominates for sustained periods.

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