AFLW 2018 team preview and predicted finish: Carlton Blues

Joel Shepherd Roar Guru

By Joel Shepherd, Joel Shepherd is a Roar Guru

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    I’ve talked a little about Carlton recently, so if you’re desperate to know why I’m so down on the team who boast gun forward Tayla Harris, possibly the league MVP last season if she weren’t injured Brianna Davey, and Collingwood’s season one MVP Nicola Stevens, you can read a longer explanation there.

    Put simply, this is about midfields.

    The four Victorian teams are a study in differing philosophies when it comes to the importance of midfielders. Melbourne and the Bulldogs value them above nearly everything else, while Collingwood and Carlton don’t.

    I’m personally in the camp that fails to see how you can win games of modern football without a midfield. If I’m wrong on this point, my predictions for Collingwood and Carlton will be spectacularly wrong as well.

    On the other hand, this isn’t just about midfields, because there’s been a lot of talk that Carlton might move Davey and Stevens up the ground.

    Both would make excellent midfielders, but if that move happens, it will leave the Blues’ backline exposed… Carlton just tossed a whole load of playing depth overboard in their rush to get Stevens and Harris, right at the time when everyone else is getting deeper.

    So one could argue that this isn’t really a midfield problem for Carlton at all — it’s a depth problem, as they now have too many important roles to be filled by too few really good players.

    We’re quickly getting to the point in the AFLW where a core group of four or five-star players is no longer enough. If it were, Carlton’s group of Harris, Vescio, Stevens and Davey are as good on paper as you’ll find.

    But after that? Carlton’s coaching group may have great faith in the rest of the list, and there are some very good players there… but let’s be blunt, these are not the A-list, they’re a very competent B-list.

    They’ll be fine if all they’re competing against is fellow B-listers, but other teams spent their off-season accumulating A-listers.

    We can dispute who’s on which side of the A-list/B-list divide in all the teams, but by my reckoning, Carlton’s off-season recruitment decisions now have them trailing nearly everyone in the quantity of A-list talent.

    This season look for Carlton’s core group of stars to impress in every game, but for everyone else to struggle.

    Prediction: 7th.

    In addition to his interest in sport, Joel Shepherd is a professional Science Fiction author. You can read more by him here.

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    The Crowd Says (7)

    • December 7th 2017 @ 1:20pm
      Harsh Truth Harry said | December 7th 2017 @ 1:20pm | ! Report

      If SOS built the list then the odds are they will finish last!

      • December 7th 2017 @ 1:59pm
        Don Freo said | December 7th 2017 @ 1:59pm | ! Report

        There you go again. Another put down of someone who has achieved something.

      • Roar Rookie

        December 8th 2017 @ 2:43pm
        Murphster888 said | December 8th 2017 @ 2:43pm | ! Report

        Even the most die hard Carlton haters concede that SOS has done an amazing job in building our list over the past 3 years after it was dessimated by Malthouse. We have an extra 6 first round picks on our list as of this years list lodgement thanks to SOS. He managed to repair the mess that was the 2014 draft by adding pick4 Pickett, pick6 Marchbank, pick 15 J Garlett and even added an extra 1st Rd pick no13 in Kennedy to the 3 we had in 2015, added Lang pick 16 from the 2013 draft and Plowman pick 3 from the 2012 draft. So not only has he drafted well from the drafts he has been in charge, he has done a sterling job repairing the past drafts before he was in charge, that is what you call pro-active thinking.
        He has built a solid core of players to take Carlton to sustained future success. Just like Geelong and Hawthorn did when they built there cores between the 2001 to 2006 drafts so to has SOS set us up for sustained success over the past 5 drafts it is just a matter of reaping that harvest when it has matured. By the time they all mature the different pieces of Boltons game plan will all be ready to Click into place and all you blind Freddie’s, or in your case half wit harry’s, will be eating your words as the Mighty Blues reap the rewards of the harvest that was fed by all you and others have pored on us since 2002. And we can wait because we know that number 17 will be in the case with the other 16 soon enough. Go Blues

    • Roar Guru

      December 7th 2017 @ 2:52pm
      Col from Brissie said | December 7th 2017 @ 2:52pm | ! Report

      Don, whilst I don’t always agree with some of your comments, you are too intelligent to be wasting your time on anything HTH posts.

    • December 7th 2017 @ 3:22pm
      Don Freo said | December 7th 2017 @ 3:22pm | ! Report

      No waste of time. Holidays.

      Just working on totally disarming him. Loving it.

      • December 7th 2017 @ 3:46pm
        Harsh Truth Harry said | December 7th 2017 @ 3:46pm | ! Report

        Don I’m still waiting for you to watch the 2017 grand final again and tell me ONE positional move Pyke made but you haven’t and you can’t!
        Tell me Don, what has SOS achieved so far at Carlton?

    • December 7th 2017 @ 11:20pm
      Kangajets said | December 7th 2017 @ 11:20pm | ! Report

      I think Carlton will finish equal 17 th with Collingwood.

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