Eagles eager to knock off Blues - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eagles eager to knock off Blues

Justin Chadwick 20/06/2011 06:59:07 PM Comments (0)

West Coast will try to use their new-found weaponry to knock high-flying Carlton off their perch in Sunday's AFL clash at Etihad Stadium.

The third-placed Blues have announced themselves as a genuine premiership threat following a dominant start to the year, with nine wins and a draw from 12 games.

But West Coast forward Mark LeCras believes the Eagles have the talent to beat Carlton, saying the time is right for the club to knock off a top-four side.

"I definitely think we can beat Carlton this weekend if we come out and play the best footy we can," LeCras said on Monday.

"I don't think we've beaten a top-four side yet this year so, if that's something we're aiming for, then it's definitely the next step. Hopefully, we can get over them."

After winning just four games last year, the Eagles have already posted eight victories from 12 outings in 2011 to sit in fifth spot on the table, just four points and percentage adrift of fourth-placed Hawthorn.

LeCras admits the side's rapid improvement has even caught him by surprise.

"Personally, I can only speak for myself, (I'm) maybe a little bit (surprised at how we are placed)," LeCras said.

"I knew we were a good side and were probably capable of playing this good footy. But I mean coming off last year, we were also realistic that it does take time.

"Now I'm not surprised at all that we are playing this good footy.

"There's still halfway to go in the season so we're not trying to get ahead of ourselves. But it's good to be winning the games we weren't winning last year."

West Coast forward Josh Kennedy has been a star for the Eagles this season, booting 37 goals in 13 games to sit third in the Coleman Medal standings.

Kennedy arrived at the Eagles as part of the Chris Judd trade and LeCras says the swap has been a big boost for West Coast.

"I mean they got a pretty good player in return. But I think Josh Kennedy for us has been a great player and will be for a long time, so we're pretty happy with it," LeCras said.

"Even off the field, around the club, he's just a great player and leader. He's fit in perfectly for us.

"When the ball comes in around his vicinity, you know that it's going to come to ground if he doesn't take the mark because he's such a hard player. It definitely makes it easier for us small blokes."

LeCras says he has been enjoying alternating between the midfield and forward line, claiming it will make him a better player in the long run.

The Blues were dealt a blow on Monday when Carlton ruck-forward Shaun Hampson was ruled out for up to eight weeks with a knee injury.

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