Thompson compliments Swans performance - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Thompson compliments Swans performance

By Daniel Brettig 08/05/2010 10:00:39 AM Comments (0)

Geelong coach Mark Thompson doesn't think Sydney can play any better than they already have.

If he's right, then Swans coach Paul Roos predicts his side will lose to the Cats in the AFL match of the round at Skilled Stadium on Sunday.

But if Sydney can keep improving at the rate Roos thinks they have been, then things may get a little more interesting.

"We're playing really well, how much better can we get? We'll need to get better than last week to beat Geelong," said Roos.

"So we'll certainly need to improve. If we can't improve on last week it's going to be really tough to beat Geelong."

At 5-1 and atop the AFL ladder, Sydney have surprised many this year, earning the following compliment (of sorts) from Thompson.

"They're playing as well as that team could possibly play, they're playing for one another," he said.

"You can just see on their faces and their expressions and how close they are that they're really enjoying their footy at the moment and it's going to be a big test next Sunday.

"The good thing is, we played well (against Richmond), we played the sort of footy we wanted to play and I really look forward to playing Sydney."

Thompson's words resembled admiration, tinged with superiority, though not enough for the diplomatic Roos to bite.

"I think what Mark was saying is we are playing for each other, we're playing well as a team," he said.

"How much better we can get is probably up in the air ... I take it as a bit of a compliment."

Roos was at pains to articulate the chasm that existed between the Swans and the Cats in 2009, when the two sides were so far apart in terms of performance as to have been playing in different leagues.

"We could very well play our best game (on Sunday) and get beaten because their best is in my opinion still a little bit ahead of most teams in the competition," Roos said.

"And people tend to forget that last year we were eight wins and 14 losses, so we've got a fair gap to build between last year and where Geelong were.

"Geelong are way ahead of us if you talked about last year's form, so what we'll find out Sunday is how much have we improved.

"We could play our best game potentially, if we don't improve on last week and we don't keep improving, I don't think our best is going to beat Geelong, so we're hoping to get better and better."

Both sides will lack a ruckman after Mark Seaby (ankle) pulled out for the Swans then Brad Ottens (foot) was ruled out for two months.

But the Cats have recalled Gary Ablett and Matthew Scarlett, as good a pair of additions one is ever likely to find.

Sydney's players are exceptionally keen for the contest, as evidenced by debutant Gary Rohan's offer to play on Ablett.

Faced by the finest team of the era, it will be a matter of how long the Swans can maintain that sort of appetite for battle.

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