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West Coast Eagles

Sheed says grand final heroics won't sway selectors

Sheed press conference 09.01.19 The Eagles midfielder talks to the Perth media for the first time since the 2018 grand final

He may well have written himself into West Coast Eagles folklore by nailing the match-winning goal in last year’s grand final, but Dom Sheed says his spot in the starting 22 is far from guaranteed heading into season 2019.

Fans will long remember Sheed’s imperious set shot, the seemingly perfect drop punt from the boundary in the dying minutes that edged West Coast in front of Collingwood and helped the club secure its fourth premiership victory.

However, what some supporters might forget is that the joint winner of the club’s Player of the Finals Award was dropped three times throughout the year.

Despite being the toast of the town for the past four months, Sheed knows he can’t rest on his laurels – or his grand final heroics – to cement his spot in the Eagles’ round one side.

“I finished the year off well and I’ll take confidence from that, but footy is a funny game and it can change very quickly,” Sheed said.

“When you’re playing in a top eight or top four team, you are going to have players who are playing in the twos who are capable of playing at AFL level.

“That’s just a reality of footy. You’re only two or three games off being back out of the team again.

“You have to stick to it, keep your head down and try to stay focused.”

Sheed will have plenty of competition for his midfield spot this year.

Two-time all-Australian Andrew Gaff will be eyeing a return to senior football once his suspension ends in round three and a host of young Eagles will be eager to break into the AFL side.

The 23-year-old hoped the friendly rivalry among teammates would bring the best out of the on-ball brigade.

“With a fit and healthy squad this year, there is only so many midfield positions and there’s going to be that competition once again this year,” Sheed commented.

“I think everybody has come back in good nick and everybody is hungry.

“A lot of the younger boys who have got one or two pre-seasons under their belt, they are all ready to go.”