West Coast Eagles report card

The West Coast Eagles made AFL history in 2011 by becoming the first team to come from wooden spooners last year to finish in the top four the following, only to bow out in a preliminary final.

 

2011 RECORD

Won 17, Draw 0, Lost 5: Finished 4th

THE LIST

FINDS OF 2011

Luke Shuey, Scott Selwood, Jack Darling, Andrew Gaff

TRADE POTENTIAL

Matt Rosa, Brad Ebert, Brad Sheppard

GOING, GOING

Ashley Smith, Brett Jones, Bradd Dalziell

GONE

WHAT THEY NEED

An outside pacy midfielder would add some polish to the Eagles’ on-ball brigade while a tall key position defender could assist the development of Eric Mackenzie and the injury-prone Mitch Brown.

COOPS’ VERDICT

The revival in the past 12 months has been extraordinary by the West Coast Eagles. Wooden spooners last year and a top four finish in 2011 that no one saw coming. The development of Nic Naitanui has been rapid while the sudden improvement in Scott Selwood and Luke Shuey has resulted in stellar seasons. First-year sensations Jack Darling and Andrew Gaff have been terrific, while Josh Kennedy continues to impress with 59 goals as a key forward. The catalysts to the Eagles’ season has also included veterans Darren Glass, Andrew Embley, Dean Cox, Daniel Kerr and Beau Waters. A feature of their improvement in 2011 has been the innovation of the forward press and their tackling pressure. The Eagles have plenty to like about their successes this season and have enough to build on for 2012.

 

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