Blues' Ratten still upbeat for AFL season - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Blues' Ratten still upbeat for AFL season

Roger Vaughan 16/07/2011 07:40:38 PM Comments (0)

Carlton coach Brett Ratten remains optimistic about what is possible this AFL season, despite a poor month.

Saturday's 19-point loss to Collingwood in the MCG blockbuster means the Blues have lost three of their past four matches.

Essendon, who have won their past two games, are their next opponent on Saturday night in what has become a must-win clash.

But the Blues played much better against the Magpies, pulling to within four points during the third term and pushing the reigning premiers throughout.

In the past four weeks, Carlton have lost to West Coast, thrashed Richmond, suffered an upset loss to the Western Bulldogs and gone down to the top side.

"We lost against West Coast and there's no doubt they beat us in all aspects of the game, when you look at the stats," Ratten said.

"We were comprehensively beaten on the day.

"Last week, I thought we were our own worst enemy - 70 possessions more.

"We just played safe and over-used the ball.

"We've lost three of the last four, but there's still a fair bit to look at in a positive aspect instead of sitting there and saying 'geez, doom and gloom' ... it's not like that at all."

Ratten said contested marks, turnovers from kickouts and handball clangers were the three major areas of concern against Collingwood.

While Collingwood key forward Travis Cloke took five contested marks down the other end of the ground, Carlton could not buy a mark in attack during the first half.

"He took five contested marks for the day and that would be half of our team," Ratten said.

"Cloke, (Darren) Jolly and Luke Ball together took (as many) contested marks (as) our whole team."

Ratten added handball has been a part of the game they have worked on since the summer.

"It wasn't making a mistake with your hands. It was the type of handball and we've tried to address this through pre-season," he said.

"That was one aspect of the game I was pretty disappointed (with) today."

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