Brennan Cox is coming into his own as a defender after a standout performance in Freo’s four-point loss to Carlton on Saturday night at Optus Stadium, according to teammate Rory Lobb.

Cox made life difficult for the Carlton forwards with 10 spoils and eight intercepts as he worked brilliantly with star backman Luke Ryan (24 disposals, 14 intercepts).

Drafted as a versatile tall forward and defender, Cox has only recently made the switch to a full time back in the past 18 months.

“That’s the best I’ve seen him play as a backman,” Lobb said.

“The way he was flying at the ball and being able to just get a fingernail in here and there, he’s really been able to take his game to another level down there.”

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'A tough one to swallow' | Lobb post-match

We spoke to Rory Lobb after the heartbreaking finish to our clash with Carlton, in his 100th AFL game milestone.

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Lobb also praised fellow forward Matt Taberner, who kicked three goals to bring his season tally to 21, already eclipsing his career-best season total of 18 in 2016.

Alongside Jeremy Finlayson of GWS, Taberner is one of only two players who have kicked a goal in every possible round this season.

“He’s been unbelievable all year,” Lobb said.

“The way he’s marking the ball and been able to hit the scoreboard is really good. I think he’s kicked the most goals that he’s ever done in a season so I hope he can continue killing it.”

Lobb added that Freo are continuing to see impressive performances from their young midfielders Andrew Brayshaw (10 contested possessions, seven tackles), Adam Cerra (18 disposals, five tackles) and Caleb Serong (13 disposals).

“I think the way the young mids, Andy, Caleb Serong, Cerra, those boys - they really compete all game,” Lobb said.

“They’re really showing that they’re a good midfield and can handle these really experienced players.”