Swans Desperate To Dismantle Freo

Image courtesy of foxsports.com.au/News Limited
Lance Franklin will be eager to justify his pretty paypacket this weekend. Image courtesy of foxsports.com.au/News Limited

Sydney v Fremantle
SCG
Saturday, April 19, 4.45pm (AEST)

Form:
Sydney:LLWL
Fremantle: WWLW

Why watch?

I's the Preliminary Final rematch and Sydney will be looking for a better show against the Dockers after being blown off the park by them last September. Freo's performance that night at Patersons Stadium has been called one of the greatest example of defensive footy every seen but unfortunately for the Swans, the Dockers don't seem to have dropped off too much if Sunday's win over Essendon is anything to go by.


Match notes 
- Lance Franklin's time in the forward line at Sydney probably won't be getting much easier this weekend against the miserly Dockers defence. Last weekend, Buddy went goalless and got towelled up by North's Scott Thompson.  And, on Saturday evening he faces a red hot Luke McPharlin, who only posted 31 possessions in Freo's 53-point win over Essendon.

- The Swans may be able to bring in some help for Franklin, though, as Kurt Tippett has overcome the knee injury that sidelined him for the first four weeks. Tippett trained strongly on Monday and may be a chance to come straight back in, although a run in the NEAFL may also be a goer.

- Such are the woes in the Sydney forward line, it took defender Jeremy Laidler to kick two of the first three goals against the Kangaroos last weekend.

- Fremantle will be sweating on the fitness of key midfielder David Mundy after he was concussed during the win over Essendon. Mundy's cause won't be helped by Freo having a six-day break between games. But coach Ross Lyon will be desperately hoping to have him available as Michael Barlow remains injured although the side will get Nathan Fyfe back from suspension.

- Forgotten Docker Anthony Morabito may also be a starter against the Swans. Having missed three seasons with a succession of knee injuries Morabito has built his form up over four WAFL games, posting 23 possessions and kicking two goals for Peel Thunder last weekend.  

Say what? 
"What we do know is that they have got fantastic leaders and talented players and we are not going to fall for 'oh Sydney aren't going that well'," Freo skipper Matthew Pavlich in The West Australian on the Swans poor start to the year.

Last five games (includes 2013 season)
Sydney 

L 25 Fremantle
L 32 GWS
L 20 Collingwood
W 63 Adelaide
L 43 North Melbourne

Fremantle 
L 15 Hawthorn
W 70 Collingwood
W 48 Gold Coast
L 58 Hawthorn
W 53 Essendon

Fantasy factoid 
You probably can't expect him to post such fine numbers every weekend, but you would have been happy having Luke McPharlin in your side last weekend with 31 disposals and 13 marks.

Cold hard fact 
Although a lot of the attention is going to be on Franklin, Sydney's woes this year seem an extension of last season's poor finish to the campaign. Overall, Sydney have won just three of their last 11 matches and look anything but a premiership contender.

Final word 
The Dockers looked listless after a six-day break when they faced Hawthorn. But then again, most sides look listless against the Hawks and Freo suffered some major injuries in that game as well. Sydney's season may almost be on the line in this clash, but don't expect Freo to show any mercy after they tore Essendon a new one last weekend. Fremantle by 23 points.

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