Adelaide Senior Coach Matthew Nicks says his side is hurting after a disappointing performance against West Coast.
The Crows went down 8.8 (56) to 14.14 (98) on Sunday evening, after a scrappy first half gave way to a final term fade-out.
Nicks said players were disappointed and frustrated by the result, feeling they had strayed from the form that defeated top sides like Melbourne and Geelong.
“At the moment we’re just too far off our best, and our best gets us up there right in the contest and gives us the chance to beat anyone,” Nicks told media after the game.
“We’re too far off that as individuals and as a team, we did a lot of things that burned us.
“If you talk about the Friday performance of last week compared to the first half this week you say, ‘right, we were in the fight and we let ourselves down up to half time with execution’.
“With respect, we probably came in at half time and felt like we kept them in it then the second half, for whatever reason, we were challenged and we dropped away.
“That’s the most disappointing part for our group at the moment. The brand that we’d like to be known for and the way we want to play our football isn’t there consistently at the moment.”
Nicks conceded basic failings in skills and structure allowed West Coast too much clear air around the ball.
“When we talk about individual form, it’s those key moments where we’ve got a simple structure game plan and we need to execute that,” he said.
“In the first half we had the right method and we just didn’t execute… in the second half, we didn’t go there at all.
“We got scored on heavily from back 50 stoppages.
“Whether that’s fatigue in the moment, or whether that’s a lack of concentration, lack of communication, leaving players free in a back 50 stoppage is something that hasn’t changed in the last 30 or 40 years of football… it’s just something that you don’t do.
“Today, for whatever reason, we were off in that area.
“The parts that take no talent, we didn’t get those right. You don’t need to be drafted in the AFL Draft or AFL system and be an elite ball-user to stand in the spot where your teammates need you.
“That hurts, when you sit around post-game as a group.
“As a team we have to get better in those moments and as individuals, we can’t allow for individuals to not play the way the team needs.
“But sometimes when the team’s not at their best, the individuals suffer… that’s what we’re trying to find out at the moment, if it’s individuals or the team not connecting.”