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Every game 'like a final', says Goddard

Katrina Gill  February 17, 2017 3:57 PM

Bec Goddard Presser February 17 Crows AFLW coach Bec Goddard speaks to the media ahead of the women's top of the table clash with Carlton at Thebarton Oval on Sunday.
It’s only a seven-week season and you’ve got to treat every game almost like a final.

Women’s Senior Coach Bec Goddard says the Crows will treat Sunday’s top-of-the-table clash with Carlton – and each of the remaining games – like a final.

The Crows, Blues and the Brisbane Lions are undefeated after two rounds of the inaugural AFL Women’s Competition. The winner of Sunday’s match at Thebarton Oval could move into outright top spot on the AFLW ladder if Collingwood can upset the Lions in Queensland.

Full match day information is available here

Goddard said it was important her team remained focused on the process rather than results.

“(On top of the ladder) is a good place to be. The competition is really tight, though. It’s only a seven-week season and you’ve got to treat every game almost like a final,” Goddard said.

“We think that success isn’t the goal, it’s more a by-product and we’re on the right track for where we wanted to set ourselves up as a Club.

“It’s great that we’ve got a couple of wins, but we’re really just focusing on this week, beating Carlton and putting on a great show at home for our fans.”

The Crows, who toppled former flag favourites the Western Bulldogs at Whitten Oval last week, have exceeded external expectations in the past fortnight.

Goddard said the Club wasn’t getting carried away with its early-season results.

“I think we are grounded … because we know what we’re capable of,” she said.

“You say that it (our form) has been a surprise, but that’s out there – outside of our group. We’re not surprised with ourselves.

“We did a great pre-season and we drafted the right people. They all get along. They’re one big family and I think it shows when they play footy together.”

Spearheaded by AFLW leading goalkicker Darcy Vescio, Carlton has impressed in wins over the Magpies and Greater Western Sydney.

Goddard said the Blues had potential match winners across the ground.

“I think they (the Blues) are number one for disposal efficiency in the competition. So, we expect their skills to be pretty slick,” Goddard said.

“Bri Davey is certainly one to watch. She’s playing really good footy at the moment. Darcy Vescio, aside from being a prolific goalkicker, has football IQ like you wouldn’t believe. She’s a great player.

“They’ve got a couple in the backline that we think we’ll be quite solid for them, like Nat Exon, and then Bianca Jakobsson plays forward.

“We think we’ve got a good handle on them. We hope we get the match-ups right and we’ve got a couple of contingencies if they start out fast and we’ve got to catch up.”

The Crows will have to make one forced change to the team that beat the Bulldogs.

Northern Territory-based midfielder Sophie Armitstead will miss the remainder of the season after having surgery to repair a torn meniscus in her left knee.

“Soph (Armitstead) obviously had a knee issue in last week’s game, but other than that we’ve got everyone available to select from,” Goddard said.

“We’re in a good position at the moment. The players are executing the game plan really well and their skills were great last week.

“Hopefully, it stays dry this weekend and we have another good show.”

A crowd of more than 9,000 turned out to watch the Club’s historic win over GWS at Thebarton Oval in Round One. Entry to Sunday’s match, which starts at 11:35am, is free.

Goddard encouraged fans to get along and support the team again.

“Sunday footy, there’s nothing better really,” she said.

“We’re winning and we’re playing a good brand of footy at the moment. We want Adelaide people to get behind us and they have so far. It’s been great.”