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  • Writer's pictureJosh Kempton

Demons not dead yet: Woewodin

Melbourne champion Shane Woewodin is still confident his former side are a premiership threat despite their qualifying final loss.

The Demons could not get the job done against the top-seeded Collingwood last Friday night, losing by seven points despite dominating most major statistical categories, including a 69-37 inside-50 advantage.

Woewodin, who won the 2000 Brownlow Medal while representing the club where his son Taj now plays, told Sports Breakfast his former side needed to enhance their connection between their midfield and forward line and capitalise on their chances in front of goal.

“They played 15 minutes of poor footy last week in the first quarter. They got jumped,” Woewodin said.

“After quarter time, they dominated that game of footy … they just didn’t get it on the scoreboard. They’ve got a couple of things to work through, but their game stacks up.

“I still think they can get the job done. They certainly would’ve loved to go straight through to a prelim but that’s not to be, they’ve got to go the hard way around now.

Melbourne will have to overcome a resurgent Carlton to win their first final since the 2021 season decider and avoid their second consecutive straight-sets exit, with Woewodin saying the two sides profiled similarly.

“They’re a stoppage team, that’s their great strength. So are Melbourne, so that’s certainly an area they’ve got to be able to curtail,” he said.

“It’ll be interesting how Carlton go with McKay out. I did think they’re a better unit with just Curnow.

“Carlton have got two big rucks in De Koning and Pittonet against Gawn, does the two wear him down?”

Woewodin said he had Brisbane pegged as his premiership favourites after their dominant 48-point win over Port Adelaide at the Gabba on Saturday Night.

“The offensive powerhouse of Brisbane was too big for [Port], they overwhelmed them,” he said.

“I didn’t think Collingwood showed enough against Melbourne. They got the victory and well done to them, but they’re game’s not humming like it was earlier in the year.

“Whether or not they can do it in Melbourne if they get the job done in the preliminary final, I think Brisbane are the hot favourites right now.”

The clash between the Demons and the Blues bounces at 5:50pm WA time tomorrow at the MCG.


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