West Coast may not be playing for a place in this season’s AFL finals, but some of the Eagles may be playing for their careers when they meet Adelaide at Patersons Stadium on Saturday.
And while it appears likely that coach John Worsfold will sign a contract extension to continue beyond this season, a third consecutive thumping this weekend could put some doubt into the board members’ minds.
Eagles midfielder Chris Masten said today that Worsfold has made it clear that some players’ performances this season had not been up to AFL standard.
“A lot of players are probably playing for their careers a little bit,” Masten said.
“Yeah Woosha’s made mention, a lot of the boys have not been playing up to AFL standard, and that’s not good enough.
“Where we want to be at, is we want to be winning flags and playing in finals, and we’re not up to scratch. Our players out there playing aren’t up to the AFL standard, so they’ve really got to sort that out.
The Eagles are currently in 13th place on the ladder, on equal points to (but percentage behind) North Melbourne and Adelaide.
Carlton and Brisbane are other teams ahead of them, but currently outside of the eight.
While there is a very slim mathematical chance that West Coast could still slip in to ninth place on the ladder and play finals, too much would need to go the Eagles way for that to happen.
And presently, they aren’t playing well enough for them to suggest they can beat the Crows by the massive margin required to keep that hope alive.
But with veteran Andrew Embley likely to play his 250th and final AFL game this week and Adam Selwood also a chance of being called-up for a farewell appearance, Masten said the team will have many reasons to lift for the clash against the Crows.
“We’ve probably got a 250-game player, Whack, Andrew Embley, playing his last game maybe, so it will be good to get up for that,” he said.
“And obviously the boys have got to put their best foot forward and really finish the season off well, because it’s been a bit unacceptable our season. Below par.”
The Eagles have suffered their two biggest losses of season 2013 in the past two weeks, going down to Geelong by 66 points in round 21 and by 62 points to Colingwood the week before.
A third consecutive poor performance may not do Worsfold’s chances of being re-signed for another two years any good.
Masten says that a solid performance against the Crows would be a show of support for Worsfold in his bid to be re-signed.
“Definitely, I would probably say that,” Masten said.
“The last two haven’t done any favours for Woosha, and as a playing group that’s a bit disgusting, because it would be horrible to play bad games like that and not get him another contract.
“The boys have definitely got to stand up. We all want to play for him. He’s a great coach so hopefully we can get it done.”
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