Time to buck up your ideas, West Coast, as season hinges in balance

NO FUN: West Coast's Jamie Cripps and Jarrod Brander look on after a Brisbane goal. Picture: Getty Images
NO FUN: West Coast's Jamie Cripps and Jarrod Brander look on after a Brisbane goal. Picture: Getty Images

WEST Coast coach Adam Simpson insists his club doesn't regret a shift to a Queensland hub despite two disappointing losses in rounds two and three.

Is it a matter of the Eagles struggling to adapt on-field? According to Simpson, yes.

The premiership coach moved to deny his players were unhappy at their Gold Coast base after their loss to Brisbane last weekend.

The defeat left the club - a pre-season flag fancy - languishing in the bottom four.

"I don't think (the players are) unhappy," Simpson said.

It's a pretty good environment here, there's no complaints on being here.

Adam Simpson

"Trying to get the elevation of energy when you need it and when to step up during the game, they're the critical things we're looking for.

"It's a pretty good environment here, there's no complaints on being here. It's just how long I suppose the boys have been asking. No excuses on that front.

"It's hard to measure how different environment affects players and individuals and staff, but I really don't want to use it as an excuse.

"I think we came up here to win, so otherwise what is the point of coming here? That has been our attitude and we just haven't delivered."

While Simpson says the Eagles have no complaints, they'd obviously rather be at home with their families in Perth. That's just a given.

We don't know what his internal messaging is. Could this be an opportunity as much as it's a hindrance?

We often hear about the 'siege mentality' in sport and how that can help a team charge through a period successfully.

Talent is no issue for West Coast. On paper, it has arguably the best list in the competition.

Nic Naitanui is elite, Josh Kennedy is a spearhead and Andrew Gaff and Elliot Yeo are both superstars.

It also managed to add Tim Kelly to its already star-studded midfield in the off-season.

Some of the best coaches in the world - especially those in European soccer - have used a siege mentality to win championships.

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Making players believe the odds are stacked against them can deliver a big return on-field. It unifies teams, produces leaders, and creates momentum.

The reality is right now the odds are stacked against all teams living in a hub, not just West Coast. Use that mental disadvantage to generate some hunger, some anger, some desire to prove the doubters wrong.

Don't forget - with Western Australia announcing as many as 30,000 fans could be inside Optus Stadium from Saturday - there's a pretty high chance both West Coast and Fremantle could get a stretch of home games towards the end of the season.

But for now, it's over to you, West Coast.

Wins are needed to salvage your season.

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This story Buck up your ideas: Siege mentality needed at Eagles first appeared on The Standard.