One bad quarter
Each of Fremantle’s three losses have been sealed by one bad quarter in each game.
In round one, Freo lost the first term by 19 points in a six-point loss.
In round two, Freo lost the third term by 13 points in a 12-point loss.
In round three, Freo lost the second term by 34 points in a 29-point loss.
Freo’s issue isn’t a lack of ability to compete with their opponents so far in 2020, it’s being able to compete with them consistently.
Ground ball winners
Much has been made of the damp conditions experienced when playing football in Queensland and Gold Coast have done well to take advantage.
When the ball goes to ground, they have league leaders Matt Rowell in hard ball gets and Hugh Greenwood in loose ball gets to win the footy.
Overall the Suns rank second for hard ball gets and third for loose ball gets.
Fremantle rank 16th for hard ball gets and 12th for loose ball gets.
Both forward lines are utilising their tall forwards as targets when moving inside 50. This is especially so for the Suns Ben King, who has been the target of 38 inside 50s this season, 10 more than any other player in the AFL.
Matthew Taberner is Freo’s main target having been kicked to 24 times – the sixth highest in the AFL.
Of those inside 50s, King has taken nine marks inside 50 compared to Taberner’s eight.
Fremantle lead the league for intercept marks this season averaging 16 per game. Unfortunately for Freo, Brennan Cox leads Freo in the stat and will miss the game this week due to a hip injury. It means a backline that is already missing Alex Pearce and Joel Hamling will be stretched even further.
You could make the case that Gold Coast are wasteful when moving the ball by foot, totalling the most ‘clangers’ and ranking fourth for ineffective kicks so far this season.
But the Suns are good at limiting the damage if they do turn the ball over, conceding only 27 points per game from turnovers, the second best in the AFL.
One bad quarter