Worsfold hopes for bright Eagles future - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Worsfold hopes for bright Eagles future

By Adam Cooper 14/06/2009 04:11:42 PM Comments (0)

John Worsfold wants to continue coaching West Coast and believes he can take the Eagles to the AFL finals in 2010.

Worsfold is one of six coaches out of contract at the end of this season, on top of Richmond's search for a full-time replacement for Terry Wallace, and is hopeful he and the Eagles can reach a new deal during the mid-season break.

"I don't know what the club is thinking and what the process is going to be, but if I had it my way it would be all over tomorrow," Worsfold said following West Coast's defeat to Richmond at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night.

Despite Worsfold's desire to stay on, the Eagles have struggled since they were knocked out of the 2007 finals and Chris Judd and Ben Cousins left the club soon after.

West Coast have won just seven of their 34 games since then, and the 13.14 (92) to 11.11 (77) defeat to Richmond was their 17th successive loss in games away from Subiaco.

But Worsfold has enormous faith in the club's young players improving rapidly, and believes the club's rebuilding through high draft picks can propel it to a finals berth next year.

"I would love to take this group to the top eight, then the top four and then (become) a premiership-contending side," he said.

"... with a top eight side, I'd like to think we can push next year to be thereabouts.

"To be a top four and premiership-winning side, it might take another 12 months maybe, maybe another 12 months from that.

"You can't predict that, once you're in the eight you're a chance."

In the meantime, Worsfold is prepared to wear his young players making mistakes, like they did against the Tigers.

West Coast were encouraged by the debut of last year's No.2 draft pick Nic Naitanui, who showed great athleticism in the ruck and could be destined for a run of games in coming weeks.

"Depending on how he's travelling, if he's bringing something to the team then we'll certainly try to keep him going, that's how he's going to learn the best," Worsfold said.

The Eagles' next assignment is against Hawthorn at Subiaco on June 27.

Meanwhile, Worsfold again voiced his concern at the lack of protection afforded to his best midfielder, Daniel Kerr, from umpires.

Kerr was tagged out of the match by Daniel Jackson. Worsfold said his player was often double-teamed and unfairly blocked - he was at one point put down by Tom Hislop off the ball - for no reward.

"He got smashed once and nothing happens," he said.

"It's not really an issue for us, but I would think when the umpires are assessing their game it might be something they look at."

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